Entrepreneurial Tenacity and Self-Efficacy Effects on Persisting Across Industry Contexts

Keywords: Tenacity, Entrepreneurial self-efficacy, Persistence, Start-up, Pre-launch, Manufacturing


This study examines trait and context antecedents of entrepreneurial persistence in new venture creation. Two personality traits, entrepreneurial self-efficacy and tenacity, differently impact subsequent entrepreneurial persistence behavior in different industry contexts. These relationships are tested using logistic regression in a sample of entrepreneurs from the Panel Study of Entrepreneurial Dynamics (PSED-II; Curtin & Reynolds, 2018). In developing the PSED-II dataset, 31,845 individuals were screened using phone interviews in order to identify a sample of 1,214 nascent entrepreneurs. Results of the current study identify significant relationships between entrepreneurial persistence in efforts to launch a new business and entrepreneurial self-efficacy and tenacity. However, the relationships have diminishing returns and vary with the industry context of the business (manufacturing, retail, services). In the retail industry sector, neither trait was significant; however, in manufacturing industry contexts, tenacity seems to matter more for continuing to pursue new ventures than self-efficacy, while in services industries, self-efficacy seems to matter more than tenacity.

Author Biographies

James Robert Van Scotter, II, University of Colorado Colorado Springs
Dr. James R. Van Scotter II (Corresponding author) is currently an Assistant Professor of Strategy in the College of Business at University of Colorado Colorado Springs. His research interests include strategic leadership, top executive individual differences and personality, behavioral research methods, positive organizational psychology, and the influence of contextual factors on performance outcomes. His recent research has been published in the Journal of Business Ethics, Journal of Vocational Behavior, Management Review Quarterly, and the International Journal of Human Resources Management.
Swapnil Garg, Indian Institute of Management (Indore)
Dr. Swapnil Garg is currently a Professor of Strategic Management at the Indian Institute of Management, Indore. His research interests include entrepreneurship, public-private partnerships, relational governance, contract coordination mechanisms, alliance management, and monopsony markets. His recent research has been published in the Journal of Public Affairs and the Journal of Business Ethics.
How to Cite
Van Scotter, J., & Garg, S. (2020). Entrepreneurial Tenacity and Self-Efficacy Effects on Persisting Across Industry Contexts. Contemporary Management Research, 15(3), 147-173. https://doi.org/10.7903/cmr.19501
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