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Entrepreneurs’ attitudes towards failure : an experiential learning approach

Politis, Diamanto LU and Gabrielsson, Jonas (2009) In International Journal of Entrepreneurial Behaviour and Research 15(4). p.364-383
Abstract
Purpose
– This paper employs theories of experiential learning to examine why some entrepreneurs have developed a more positive attitude towards failures compared to others.

Design/methodology/approach
– The paper conducts statistical analysis on a sample of 231 Swedish entrepreneurs that have started new independent firms in 2004.

Findings
– The empirical findings support the guiding proposition that more favourable attitudes towards failure could be learned through entrepreneurs' life and work. The results suggest that previous start up experience is strongly associated with a more positive attitude towards failure. The paper also finds that experience from closing down a business is associated with a more... (More)
Purpose
– This paper employs theories of experiential learning to examine why some entrepreneurs have developed a more positive attitude towards failures compared to others.

Design/methodology/approach
– The paper conducts statistical analysis on a sample of 231 Swedish entrepreneurs that have started new independent firms in 2004.

Findings
– The empirical findings support the guiding proposition that more favourable attitudes towards failure could be learned through entrepreneurs' life and work. The results suggest that previous start up experience is strongly associated with a more positive attitude towards failure. The paper also finds that experience from closing down a business is associated with a more positive attitude towards failure. In addition, a more fine‐grained analysis suggests that experience from closing down a business due to reasons of poor performance is a highly valuable source of learning while closure due to more personal reasons does not lead to the same result.

Research limitations/implications
– In sum, the findings add to the knowledge of why some entrepreneurs have a more positive attitude towards failure compared to others. It also provides some general implications for the understanding of entrepreneurial learning as an experiential process.

Practical implications
– A positive attitude toward failure might be a significant asset for entrepreneurs as it might help them to deal with and learn from their mistakes and to move forward. The results indicate that the attitudes toward failure are not homogeneous among entrepreneurs. Rather, this attitude can, at least to some degree, be influenced due to new experiences and new information.

Originality/value
– The paper provides novel insights with regard to the role that critical career experiences can play for the development of entrepreneurs' attitudes towards failure. (Less)
Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:
author
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
keywords
Careers, Experience, Experiential learning, Business failures, Sweden, Enterpreneurs, careers, experience, experiential learning, business failures, Sweden, entrepreneurs
in
International Journal of Entrepreneurial Behaviour and Research
volume
15
issue
4
pages
20 pages
publisher
Emerald Group Publishing Limited
external identifiers
  • scopus:67749095685
ISSN
1355-2554
DOI
10.1108/13552550910967921
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
d40ed374-ad78-4e51-955e-ac9541494519
date added to LUP
2017-01-31 21:38:33
date last changed
2017-12-10 05:04:50
@article{d40ed374-ad78-4e51-955e-ac9541494519,
  abstract     = {Purpose<br/>– This paper employs theories of experiential learning to examine why some entrepreneurs have developed a more positive attitude towards failures compared to others.<br/><br/>Design/methodology/approach<br/>– The paper conducts statistical analysis on a sample of 231 Swedish entrepreneurs that have started new independent firms in 2004.<br/><br/>Findings<br/>– The empirical findings support the guiding proposition that more favourable attitudes towards failure could be learned through entrepreneurs' life and work. The results suggest that previous start up experience is strongly associated with a more positive attitude towards failure. The paper also finds that experience from closing down a business is associated with a more positive attitude towards failure. In addition, a more fine‐grained analysis suggests that experience from closing down a business due to reasons of poor performance is a highly valuable source of learning while closure due to more personal reasons does not lead to the same result.<br/><br/>Research limitations/implications<br/>– In sum, the findings add to the knowledge of why some entrepreneurs have a more positive attitude towards failure compared to others. It also provides some general implications for the understanding of entrepreneurial learning as an experiential process.<br/><br/>Practical implications<br/>– A positive attitude toward failure might be a significant asset for entrepreneurs as it might help them to deal with and learn from their mistakes and to move forward. The results indicate that the attitudes toward failure are not homogeneous among entrepreneurs. Rather, this attitude can, at least to some degree, be influenced due to new experiences and new information.<br/><br/>Originality/value<br/>– The paper provides novel insights with regard to the role that critical career experiences can play for the development of entrepreneurs' attitudes towards failure.},
  author       = {Politis, Diamanto and Gabrielsson, Jonas  },
  issn         = {1355-2554},
  keyword      = {    Careers, Experience, Experiential learning, Business failures, Sweden, Enterpreneurs,careers,experience,experiential learning,business failures,Sweden,entrepreneurs},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {4},
  pages        = {364--383},
  publisher    = {Emerald Group Publishing Limited},
  series       = {International Journal of Entrepreneurial Behaviour and Research},
  title        = {Entrepreneurs’ attitudes towards failure : an experiential learning approach},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1108/13552550910967921},
  volume       = {15},
  year         = {2009},
}