Practice Makes Perfect: Entrepreneurial-Experience Curves and Venture Performance
This study tackles the puzzle of why increasing entrepreneurial experience does not always lead to improved financial performance of new ventures. We propose an alternate framework demonstrating how experience translates into expertise by arguing that the positive experience-performance relationship only appears to expert entrepreneurs, while novice entrepreneurs may actually perform increasingly worse because of their inability to generalize their experiential knowledge accurately into new ventures. These negative performance implications can be alleviated if the level of contextual similarity between prior and current ventures is high. Using matched employee-employer data of an entire population of Swedish founder-managers between 1990 and 2007, we find a non-linear relationship between entrepreneurial experience and financial performance consistent with our framework. Moreover, the level of industry, geographic, and temporal similarities between prior and current ventures positively moderates this relationship. Our work provides both theoretical and practical implications for entrepreneurial experience—people can learn entrepreneurship and pursue it with greater success as long as they have multiple opportunities to gain experience, overcome barriers to learning, and build an entrepreneurial-experience curve.
|Date of creation:||17 Jul 2013|
|Date of revision:|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: The Ratio Institute, P.O. Box 5095, SE-102 42 Stockholm, Sweden|
Phone: 08-441 59 00
Fax: 08-441 59 29
Web page: http://www.ratio.se/
More information through EDIRC
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Jing Chen, 2013. "Selection and Serial Entrepreneurs," Journal of Economics & Management Strategy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 22(2), pages 281-311, 06.
- Ucbasaran, Deniz & Westhead, Paul & Wright, Mike, 2009. "The extent and nature of opportunity identification by experienced entrepreneurs," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 24(2), pages 99-115, March.
- Steven Klepper, 2002. "The capabilities of new firms and the evolution of the US automobile industry," Industrial and Corporate Change, Oxford University Press, vol. 11(4), pages 645-666, August.
- Paul Gompers & Anna Kovner & Josh Lerner & David Scharfstein, 2006. "Skill vs. Luck in Entrepreneurship and Venture Capital: Evidence from Serial Entrepreneurs," NBER Working Papers 12592, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Michael A. Lapré & Amit Shankar Mukherjee & Luk N. Van Wassenhove, 2000. "Behind the Learning Curve: Linking Learning Activities to Waste Reduction," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 46(5), pages 597-611, May.
- Marc Gruber & Ian C. MacMillan & James D. Thompson, 2008. "Look Before You Leap: Market Opportunity Identification in Emerging Technology Firms," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 54(9), pages 1652-1665, September.
- Shepherd, Dean A. & Wiklund, Johan & Haynie, J. Michael, 2009. "Moving forward: Balancing the financial and emotional costs of business failure," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 24(2), pages 134-148, March.
- Stuart, Robert W. & Abetti, Pier A., 1990. "Impact of entrepreneurial and management experience on early performance," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 5(3), pages 151-162, May.
- Klepper, Steven, 2001. "Employee Startups in High-Tech Industries," Industrial and Corporate Change, Oxford University Press, vol. 10(3), pages 639-74, September.
- Lee, Lung-Fei, 1983. "Generalized Econometric Models with Selectivity," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 51(2), pages 507-12, March.
- Linda Argote & Sara L. Beckman & Dennis Epple, 1990. "The Persistence and Transfer of Learning in Industrial Settings," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 36(2), pages 140-154, February.
- Timothy B. Folta & Frédéric Delmar & Karl Wennberg, 2010.
INFORMS, vol. 56(2), pages 253-269, February.
- Frese, Michael, 2009. "Towards a Psychology of Entrepreneurship — An Action Theory Perspective," Foundations and Trends(R) in Entrepreneurship, now publishers, vol. 5(6), pages 437-496, November.
- Melissa A. Schilling & Patricia Vidal & Robert E. Ployhart & Alexandre Marangoni, 2003. "Learning by Doing Something Else: Variation, Relatedness, and the Learning Curve," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 49(1), pages 39-56, January.
- Oe, Akitsu & Mitsuhashi, Hitoshi, 2013. "Founders' experiences for startups' fast break-even," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 66(11), pages 2193-2201.
- Joel A. C. Baum & Paul Ingram, 1998. "Survival-Enhancing Learning in the Manhattan Hotel Industry, 1898--1980," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 44(7), pages 996-1016, July.
- Cassar, Gavin, 2014. "Industry and startup experience on entrepreneur forecast performance in new firms," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 29(1), pages 137-151.
- Delmar, Frederic & Shane, Scott, 2004. "Legitimating first: organizing activities and the survival of new ventures," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 19(3), pages 385-410, May.
- Rerup, Claus, 2005. "Learning from past experience: Footnotes on mindfulness and habitual entrepreneurship," Scandinavian Journal of Management, Elsevier, vol. 21(4), pages 451-472, December.
- Tversky, Amos & Kahneman, Daniel, 1992. "Advances in Prospect Theory: Cumulative Representation of Uncertainty," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 5(4), pages 297-323, October.
- Ucbasaran, Deniz & Alsos, Gry Agnete & Westhead, Paul & Wright, Mike, 2008. "Habitual Entrepreneurs," Foundations and Trends(R) in Entrepreneurship, now publishers, vol. 4(4), pages 309-450, March.
- Epple, D. & Argote, L. & Darr, E.D., 1995. "The Acquisition, Transfer and Depreciation of Knowledge in Service Organisations: Productivity in Franchises," GSIA Working Papers 1995-16, Carnegie Mellon University, Tepper School of Business.
- Argote, L. & Epple, D., 1990. "Learning Curves In Manufacturing," GSIA Working Papers 89-90-02, Carnegie Mellon University, Tepper School of Business.
- Scott Shane & Rakesh Khurana, 2003. "Bringing individuals back in: the effects of career experience on new firm founding," Industrial and Corporate Change, Oxford University Press, vol. 12(3), pages 519-543, June.
- C. Lanier Benkard, 2000. "Learning and Forgetting: The Dynamics of Aircraft Production," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(4), pages 1034-1054, September.
- Colin Mason & Richard Harrison, 2006. "After the exit: Acquisitions, entrepreneurial recycling and regional economic development," Regional Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 40(1), pages 55-73.
- Simon, Herbert A, 1978. "Rationality as Process and as Product of Thought," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 68(2), pages 1-16, May.
- Eric D. Darr & Linda Argote & Dennis Epple, 1995. "The Acquisition, Transfer, and Depreciation of Knowledge in Service Organizations: Productivity in Franchises," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 41(11), pages 1750-1762, November.
- Cooper, Arnold C. & Gimeno-Gascon, F. Javier & Woo, Carolyn Y., 1994. "Initial human and financial capital as predictors of new venture performance," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 9(5), pages 371-395, September.
- Parker, Simon C., 2006. "Learning about the unknown: How fast do entrepreneurs adjust their beliefs?," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 21(1), pages 1-26, January.
- Tornikoski, Erno T. & Newbert, Scott L., 2007. "Exploring the determinants of organizational emergence: A legitimacy perspective," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 22(2), pages 311-335, March.
- Bates, Timothy, 1990. "Entrepreneur Human Capital Inputs and Small Business Longevity," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 72(4), pages 551-59, November.
- Stuart, Toby & Sorenson, Olav, 2003. "The geography of opportunity: spatial heterogeneity in founding rates and the performance of biotechnology firms," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 32(2), pages 229-253, February.
- Edward P. Lazear, 2004. "Balanced Skills and Entrepreneurship," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(2), pages 208-211, May.
- Barton H. Hamilton, 2000. "Does Entrepreneurship Pay? An Empirical Analysis of the Returns to Self-Employment," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 108(3), pages 604-631, June.
- Robert A. Baron & Michael D. Ensley, 2006. "Opportunity Recognition as the Detection of Meaningful Patterns: Evidence from Comparisons of Novice and Experienced Entrepreneurs," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 52(9), pages 1331-1344, September.
- Gartner, William B. & Starr, Jennifer A. & Bhat, Subodh, 1999. "Predicting new venture survival: An analysis of "anatomy of a start-up." cases from Inc. Magazine," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 14(2), pages 215-232, March.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:hhs:ratioi:0210. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Martin Korpi)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.