Personality and entrepreneurial status
Personality variables may have an important role to play in developing theories of the entrepreneurial process. We are often prone to like the whole "entrepreneurial theme" and in todays society everyone´s an innovator. Organisations are innovative, processes are innovative and the taxonomy of entrepreneurs and innovators are potentially diluted.
In an meta analysis from 2006 Zhao and Seibert set out to examine the relationship between the Big Five and Entrepreneurial status (ES).
Zhao and Seibert chose to compare the personality traits of entrepreneurs and managers testing six different hypothesis. They reviewed 60 studies containing over 10,000 individuals.
As hypothesized entrepreneurs scored significantly lower than managers on Neuroticism (-0.37) and Agreeableness (-0.16). They also found that entrepreneurs scored significantly higher than managers on Openness to Experience (0.36) and perhaps the most strikingly result was related to Conscientiousness (0.45)
Interestingly enough Extraversion showed no significant difference.
The results suggests that entrepreneurs differs from those in a managerial position in 4 out of 5 dimensions of personality.
This not only helps us identify individuals with entrepreneurial status but, treated right, it can also give us useful information on how to approach these individuals. Our innovation systems may draw new insight on how to rig the innovation and the entrepreneurial environments.
Last but not least it is invaluable information the next time you are out looking for your next manager.