Entrepreneurial success [Elektronische Ressource] : the role of human capital and learning / Jens M. Unger

Entrepreneurial success [Elektronische Ressource] : the role of human capital and learning / Jens M. Unger

English
244 Pages
Read
Download
Downloading requires you to have access to the YouScribe library
Learn all about the services we offer

Description

Entrepreneurial Success: The Role of Human Capital and Learning Inaugural-Dissertation zur Erlangung des Doktorgrades der Philosophie des Fachbereiches 06 der Justus-Liebig-Universität Gießen Jens M. Unger aus Bad Homburg 2006 Dekan: Prof. Dr. Joachim C. Brunstein 1. Berichterstatter: Prof. Dr. Michael Frese 2. Berichterstatter: Prof. Dr. Joachim Stiensmeier-Pelster To my Mother Anneliese To my Brother Christian Acknowledgements First of all, I thank my doctor father Michael Frese for his creative energy and his on-going inspiration throughout the duration of my dissertation. Second, I thank Sabine Sonnentag for taking her time to discuss my research and for providing the impetus for Study 2 of my dissertation. Next, I want to thank all of my colleagues and former colleagues. My special thanks go to Nina Keith for her valuable intellectual and practical support throughout the whole dis-sertation. I am also especially grateful to Andreas Rauch and Mario Krist for many discus-sions on the topic, to Stefanie Krauss for her support for Study 3 and to Holger Steinmetz for his input for Study 1. I am thankful to a great team of capable and ambitious students: Christine Hilling, Mi-chael Gielnik, and Petra Zinsberger. I also want to thank our team of student assistants: Leon-ore Schulze, Charlotte Knoll, and Prisca Alig.

Subjects

Informations

Published by
Published 01 January 2006
Reads 19
Language English
Document size 1 MB
Report a problem





Entrepreneurial Success:
The Role of Human Capital and Learning



Inaugural-Dissertation
zur
Erlangung des Doktorgrades
der Philosophie des Fachbereiches 06
der Justus-Liebig-Universität Gießen




Jens M. Unger
aus Bad Homburg





2006

























Dekan: Prof. Dr. Joachim C. Brunstein
1. Berichterstatter: Prof. Dr. Michael Frese
2. Berichterstatter: Prof. Dr. Joachim Stiensmeier-Pelster













To my Mother Anneliese


To my Brother Christian
Acknowledgements
First of all, I thank my doctor father Michael Frese for his creative energy and his on-
going inspiration throughout the duration of my dissertation.
Second, I thank Sabine Sonnentag for taking her time to discuss my research and for
providing the impetus for Study 2 of my dissertation.
Next, I want to thank all of my colleagues and former colleagues. My special thanks
go to Nina Keith for her valuable intellectual and practical support throughout the whole dis-
sertation. I am also especially grateful to Andreas Rauch and Mario Krist for many discus-
sions on the topic, to Stefanie Krauss for her support for Study 3 and to Holger Steinmetz for
his input for Study 1.
I am thankful to a great team of capable and ambitious students: Christine Hilling, Mi-
chael Gielnik, and Petra Zinsberger. I also want to thank our team of student assistants: Leon-
ore Schulze, Charlotte Knoll, and Prisca Alig. Thanks to Phillip Reichardt for helping me
format the text.
Most of all, I want to thank my family: My mother Anneliese, my father Hartmut, my
brother Christian, and my sister Stefanie Unger. Thanks Christian for letting me use your
computers. They are all yours again! My special thanks go to the Bosch-family, Roger, Lilli,
Karen, Kirsten, and David in LA. Thanks for always believing in me. A special note of thanks
goes to my 83-year old aunt for her support over many phone calls. Last but not least I thank
my friend Johannes Lütz for his emotional support throughout the entire time of my disserta-
tion.

"For it is like a man, going into another country, who called his own servants,
and entrusted his goods to them. To one he gave five talents, to another two, to
another one; to each according to his own ability. Then he went on his jour-
ney. Immediately he who received the five talents went and traded with them,
and made another five talents. In like manner he also who got the two gained
another two. But he who received the one went away and dug in the earth, and
hid his lord’s money. "Now after a long time the lord of those servants came,
and reconciled accounts with them. He who received the five talents came and
brought another five talents, saying, ‘Lord, you delivered to me five talents.
Behold, I have gained another five talents besides them.’ "His lord said to him,
‘Well done, good and faithful servant. You have been faithful over a few
things, I will set you over many things. Enter into the joy of your lord.’ "He
also who got the two talents came and said, ‘Lord, you delivered to me two
talents. Behold, I have gained another two talents besides them.’ "His lord
said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant. You have been faithful over
a few things, I will set you over many things. Enter into the joy of your lord.’
"He also who had received the one talent came and said, ‘Lord, I knew you
that you are a hard man, reaping where you did not sow, and gathering where
you did not scatter. I was afraid, and went away and hid your talent in the
earth. Behold, you have what is yours.’ "But his lord answered him, ‘You
wicked and slothful servant. You knew that I reap where I didn’t sow, and
gather where I didn’t scatter. You ought therefore to have deposited my money
with the bankers, and at my coming I should have received back my own with
interest. Take away therefore the talent from him, and give it to him who has
the ten talents. For to everyone who has will be given, and he will have abun-
dance, but from him who has not, even that which he has will be taken away.
Throw out the unprofitable servant into the outer darkness, where there will be
weeping and gnashing of teeth.’"
Matt 25:14-30
Abstract
This dissertation reports three studies. Study 1 meta-analytically assesses magnitude,
moderators, and mediators of human capital success relationships in entrepreneurship. Study
2 shifts the focus to the acquisition and effects of current entrepreneurial knowledge. Study 3
examines the role of entrepreneurial knowledge in the context of owner self-efficacy believes.
The first study (Chapter 2) analyzed human capital from a learning perspective and
meta-analytically integrated results from two decades of human capital research in entrepre-
neurship. While most reviews conclude that human capital is related to success there have
been conflicting findings. Magnitude, best estimate of the relationship, and the processes from
human capital investments to success are unknown. Based on 67 studies (N = 21.597) we
found a significant but small relationship between human capital and success (r = .10). Mod-c
erator analysis yielded higher relationships for human capital related to entrepreneurial tasks
compared to human capital with low task relatedness, for human capital conceptualized as
knowledge/skills compared to human capital conceptualized as experience/schooling (human
capital proxies), for young compared to old businesses, in less developed countries compared
to developed countries, and for success measured as size compared to growth and profit. Hu-
man capital as knowledge/skills and human capital in young business yielded the highest av-
erage relationship with success (r = .17 and r = .19, respectively). We further compared the c c
validity of three approaches to entrepreneurial success: Schooling, cognitive ability, resource-
based view. Cognitive ability and variables attributable to the resource-based view produced
higher success relationships than schooling. Finally, we tested a mediational model of human
capital. Meta-analytic path analyses showed indirect effects from experience/schooling and
cognitive ability to knowledge/skills to success. Findings are relevant, lenders, policy makers,
educators, and the entrepreneurs themselves and may guide researchers in their variable selec-
tion and choice of measurements.
The second study (Chapter 3) examines antecedents and outcomes of deliberate prac-
tice activities in entrepreneurship. Deliberate practice consists of individualized self-regulated
and effortful activities aimed at improving one’s current performance level. Interview and
questionnaire data from 90 South African business owners showed a direct impact of deliber-
ate practice on entrepreneurial knowledge as well as an indirect effect on business growth via
entrepreneurial knowledge. Cognitive ability and education were identified as antecedents of

deliberate practice. The study emphasises the importance of continuous learning efforts in en-
trepreneurship.
The third study (Chapter 4) examines the role of entrepreneurial knowledge and per-
ceived self-efficacy for small business growth. Questionnaire and interview data from 280
Zimbabwean small businesses owners were analyzed. Structural equation models showed sig-
nificant effects of entrepreneurial knowledge on financial and employment growth. While
there was only a marginal effect of self-efficacy on financial and no effect of self-efficacy on
employment growth the data showed interaction effects of entrepreneurial knowledge and
self-efficacy for both growth indicators. The relationship of self-efficacy with financial and
employment growth was stronger for business owners with higher entrepreneurial knowledge.
Findings are interpreted as detrimental effects of overconfidence, the discrepancy between
what owners know and what they believe they are capable of. The study adds to the under-
standing of potentially negative effects of self-efficacy on performance.


Table of Contents

CHAPTER 1
Introduction 10
1.1 Human Capital and Success 11
1.2 Deliberate Practice 14
1.3 Knowledge and Self-Efficacy 15
References 18

CHAPTER 2
Human Capital and Entrepreneurial Success: A Meta-Analytical Review 20
2.1 The Concept of Human Capital 21
2.2 Human Capital and Success 23
2.3 Human Capital from a Learning Perspective 24
2.3.1 Knowledge versus Experience 25
2.3.2 Task-Relatedness of Human Capital 26
2.3.3 Context as a Moderator of the Human Capital - Success Relationship 27
2.3.4 Schooling, Cognitive Ability, Resource-Based View 29
2.3.5 Human Capital and Success: Measurement of Success 30
2.3.6 A Mediational Model of Human Capital 30
2.4 Method 32
2.4.1 Selection Criteria 32
2.4.2 Collection of Studies 33
2.4.3 Variable Coding 33
2.4.4 Analytical Approaches 34
2.5 Results 36
2.6 Discussion 41
2.6.1 Limitations 45
2.6.2 Implications for Future Research 46
2.6.3 Conclusion 47
References 48

CHAPTER 3
Deliberate Practice in Entrepreneurship:
Relationships with Education, Cognitive ability, Knowledge, and Success 56
3.1 Deliberate Practice Applied to Entrepreneurship 57
3.1.1 Deliberate Practice, Knowledge, and Success 60

3.1.2 Cognitive Ability and Education as Prerequisites of Learning 62
3.2 Methods 63
3.2.1 Sample 63
3.2.2 Procedure 64
3.2.3 Measures 65
3.2.4 Method of Analysis 68
3.3 Results 69
3.4 Discussion 71
3.4.1 Future Research Directions 72
3.4.2 Limitations and Strengths 73
3.4.3 Conclusions and Practical Implications 75
References 76

CHAPTER 4
To know or to believe you can? The Role of Entrepreneurial Knowledge and Self-
Efficacy for Small Business Growth 81
4.1 Knowledge and Self-Efficacy in Entrepreneurship 82
4.1.1 Entrepreneurial Knowledge, Self-Efficacy and Business Growth 84
4.1.2 Interactions between Self-Efficacy and Entrepreneurial Knowledge 85
4.1.3 Cognitive Resources and Entrepreneurial Knowledge as a Mediator 86
4.2 Methods 87
4.2.1 Sample 87
4.2.2 Procedure 88
4.2.3 Measures 88
4.2.4 Method of Analysis 89
4.3 Results 90
4.4 Discussion 96
4.4.1 Theoretical Implications 97
4.4.2 Practical Implications 99
4.4.3 Limitations and Future Research 100
References 101

CHAPTER 5
Conclusion 104
References 109

APPENDIX

Chapter 1 Introduction
1 CHAPTER 1
Introduction
Researchers from various disciplines agree about the significance of successful entre-
preneurship for desired outcomes such as job creation, wealth, innovation, and societal eco-
nomic development (e.g. Autio, 2005; Birch, 1987; Kirzner, 1997; Frese, 2000). It is therefore
important to better understand the factors that contribute to small business success. One area
of research that is receiving growing attention, by academics and practitioners, is the impor-
tance of learning and knowledge (e.g. Harrison & Leitch 2005; Reuber & Fisher, 1994; Grant,
1996; Zahra & George, 2002; Shane, 2000; cf. Sonnentag & Frese, 2002). This is also re-
flected in a recent special issue on entrepreneurial learning in the Entrepreneurship Theory
and Practice journal which emphasises the role of learning in organizational adaptation and
flexibility in conditions of change and uncertainty. Knowledge helps owners to detect busi-
ness opportunities (Shane, 2000) and represents a source of competitive advantage (e.g.
Levinthal & March, 1991; Senge, 1990; Zahra & George, 2002). Learning is the process that
generates this knowledge. Because knowledge in modern work environments has a limited
shelf-life it needs to be constantly revised and updated (Reuber & Fisher, 1999). This requires
continuous engagement in processes of learning. Knowledge and learning may play an even
larger role in the future because of increasing knowledge intensive activities, rapid change
and new requirements in the work place (cf. Honig, 2001; Pennings, Lee, & van Witteloos-
tuijn, 1998; Bosma, van Praag, Thurik, & de Wit, 2004; Sonnentag & Frese, 2002).
Given the importance of learning to small business success it is surprising that empiri-
cal studies on how business owners learn and accumulate relevant knowledge are still rare
(Agnal, 1999; Ravasi & Turati, 2005). The link between learning and entrepreneurial effec-
tiveness is far from proven (Harrison & Leitch, 2005). Scholars therefore conclude that re-
search on learning in entrepreneurship is still in its early stage (e.g. Ravasi & Turati, 2005).
The present dissertation seeks to contribute to a better understanding of the effects of
knowledge in entrepreneurship and the learning process that generates knowledge. We first
meta-analytically assess the impact of human capital attributes (experience, knowledge, and
skills) on success and examine influences that moderate the relationships. Second, we use the
concept of deliberate practice from expertise research comprising activities designed to im-
10