Early Influences and Entrepreneurial Intent: Examining the Roles of Education, Experience, and Advice Networks

  • Mark T. Schenkel Belmont University
  • Rodney R. D'Souza Northern Kentucky University
  • Jeffery R. Cornwall Belmont University
  • Charles H. Matthews University of Cincinnati


The independent effects of education, personal experience, and advice networks in the development of new venture creation intent is of considerable interest to educators, researchers, practitioners, and policy makers. Little research, however, has systematically considered the possibility that the relative importance of these factors varies in the early stages of entrepreneurial intent formation. Using a unique dataset (n=963), this study investigates these key relationships at two different points in time. Our results suggest that personal start-up experience and advice networks are particularly influential on the formation of intent to start a new venture, and that a marked shift in significance occurs from the former to the latter.


Download data is not yet available.


Ajzen, I. (1987). Attitudes, traits, and actions: Dispositional prediction of behavior in personality and social psychology. In L. Berkowitz (Ed.), Advances in experimental social psychology, (pp. 1-62). San Diego, CA: Academic Press, Inc.
Ajzen, I. (1991). The theory of planned behavior. Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, 50(2), 179–211.
Alvarez, S. A., Barney, J. B., & Young, S. L. (2010). Debates in entrepreneurship: Opportunity formation and implications for the field of entrepreneurship. In Z. Acs and D. B. Audretsch (Eds.), Handbook of entrepreneurship research: An interdisciplinary survey and introduction, (Volume 5: pp. 23-45). New York, NY: Springer New York.
Alvarez, S. A., & Busenitz, L. W. (2001). The entrepreneurship of resource-based theory. Journal of Management, 27(6), 755-776.
Amit, R., Glosten, L., & Muller, E. (1993). Challenges to theory development in entrepreneurship research. Journal of Management Studies, 30(5), 815-834.
Bandura, A. (1986). The social foundations of thought and action. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall.
Bates, T., (1995). Self-employment entry across industry groups. Journal of Business Venturing, 10(2), 143–156.
Becker, G. S. (1964). Human Capital. Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press.
Bellu, R., Davidsson, P. & Goldfarb, C. (1990). Toward a theory of entrepreneurial behavior: Empirical evidence from Israel, Italy, and Sweden.’ Entrepreneurship and Regional Development, 2(2), 195-209.
Blair, E. S., & Marcum, T. M. (2015). Heed our advice: Exploring how professionals guide small business owners in start-up entity choice. Journal of Small Business Management, 53(1), 249-265.
Boden, R., & Nucci, A. (2000). On the survival prospects of men's and women's new business ventures.’ Journal of Business Venturing, 15(4), 347-362.
Brännback, M., Krueger Jr., N. F., Carsud, A. L., Kickul, J. & Elfving, J. (2007). ‘Trying’ to be an entrepreneur: A ‘goal specific’ challenge to the intentions model. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=1135224.
Campbell, J. M., Line, N., Runyan, R., and Swinney, J. L. (2015). ‘The moderating effect of family-ownership on firm performance: An examination of entrepreneurial orientation and social capital.’ Journal of Small Business Strategy, 22(1), 46–81.
Casson, M. (2003) Entrepreneurship, business culture and the theory of the firm. In Z. Acs and D. B. Audretsch (Eds.), Handbook of entrepreneurship research: An interdisciplinary survey and introduction, (Volume 1: pp. 223-246). New York, NY: Springer US.
Chrisman, J. J., & Katrishen, F. (1994). The economic impact of small business development center counseling activities in the United States: 1990-1991. Journal of Business Venturing, 9(4), 271-280.
Chrisman, J. J., & McMullan, W. E. (2004). Outsider assistance as a knowledge resource for new venture survival. Journal of Small Business Management, 42(3), 229-244.
Cohen, W., & Levinthal, D. (1990). ‘Absorptive capacity: A new perspective on learning and innovation.’ Administrative Science Quarterly, 35(1), 128-152.
Davidsson, P., & Honig, B. (2003). The role of human and social capital among nascent entrepreneurs. Journal of Business Venturing, 18(3), 301-331.
Dreyfus, H. L., & Dreyfus, S. E. (1986). Mind over machine. Oxford, United Kingdom: Basil Blackwell, Ltd.
D'Souza, R. R., & Schenkel, M. T. (2011). How does opportunity variation develop? A study of the factors that influence identification of innovative and imitative opportunities. Journal of Business and Entrepreneurship, 23(1), 1-29.
Duval-Couetil, N. (2013). Assessing the impact of entrepreneurship education programs: challenges and approaches. Journal of Small Business Management, 51(3), 394-409.
Evans, D. S., & Jovanovic, B. (1989). An estimated model of entrepreneurial choice under liquidity constraints. The Journal of Political Economy, 97(4), 808-827.
Fregetto, E. (2015). Investigating the impact of a small business consulting course on entrepreneurial attitudes. Journal of Small Business Strategy, 22(1), 46–81.
Gimeno, J., Folta, T., Cooper, A., & Woo, C. (1997). Survival of the fittest? Entrepreneurial human capital and the persistence of underperforming firms.’ Administrative Science Quarterly, 42(4), 750-783.
Haber, S., & Reichel, A. (2007). ‘The cumulative nature of the entrepreneurial process: The contribution of human capital, planning, and environment resources to small venture performance. Journal of Business Venturing, 22(1), 119-145.
Hayek, F. (1945). The use of knowledge in society. American Economic Review, 35(4), 519-530.
Harris, M. L., Gibson, S. G., and Taylor, S. R. (Fall 2007/Winter 2008). Examining the impact of small business institute participation on entrepreneurial attitudes. Journal of Small Business Strategy, 18(2), 57–75.

Hindle, K., Klyver, K., & Jennings, D. (2009). An “informed” model of intent: Incorporating human capital, social capital, and gender variables into the theoretical model of entrepreneurial intentions. In A. L. Carsrud & M. Brännback (Eds.), Understanding the entrepreneurial mind: Opening the black box, (pp. 35-50). New York, NY: Springer Science+Business Media, LLC.
Honig, B. (1996). Education and self-employment in Jamaica. Comparative Education Review. 40(2), 177–193.
Honig, B. (1998). What determines success? Examining the human, financial, and social capital of Jamaican microentrepreneurs. Journal of Business Venturing, 13(5), 371 – 394.
Honig, B. (2004). ‘Entrepreneurship education: Toward a model of contingency-based business planning.’ Academy of Management Learning and Education, 3(3), 258-73.
Hmieleski, K. M., & Corbett, A. (2006). Proclivity for improvisation as a predictor of entrepreneurial intentions. Journal of Small Business Management, 44(1), 45-63.
Jöreskog, K. G. (1969). A general approach to confirmatory maximum likelihood factor analysis. Psychometrika, 34(2), 183–202.
Katz, J. (2007). Education and training in entrepreneurship. In J. R. Baum, M. Frese, and R. Baron (Eds.), The psychology of entrepreneurship (pp. 209-235). New York, NY: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, Inc.
Kim, P., H. Aldrich, & Keister, L. (2006). Access (not) denied: The impact of financial, human, and cultural capital on entrepreneurial entry in the United States. Small Business Economics, 27(1), 5-22.
Kirkwood, J. (2007). Igniting the entrepreneurial spirit: Is the role parents play gendered? International Journal of Entrepreneurial Behaviour and Research, 13(1), 39-59.
Kirzner, I. (1979). Perception, opportunity, and profit: Studies in the theory of entrepreneurship. Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press.
Kirzner, I. (1999). Creativity and/or alertness: A reconsideration of the Schumpeterian entrepreneur. Review of Austrian Economics, 11(12), 5-17.
Klyver, K. & Schenkel, M. T. (2014). From resource “access” to “use”: Exploring the impact of resource combinations on nascent entrepreneurship. Journal of Small Business Management, 51(4), 539-556.
Knight, F. H. (1921). Risk, uncertainty and profit. Boston, MA: Houghton Mifflin.
Krueger Jr., N. F. (1993). The impact of prior entrepreneurial exposure on perceptions of new venture feasibility and desirability. Entrepreneurship: Theory and Practice, 18(1), 5-21.
Krueger Jr., N. F. (2007). What lies beneath? The experiential essence of entrepreneurial thinking. Entrepreneurship: Theory and Practice, 31(1), 123-138.
Krueger Jr., N. F., Reilly, M. D. & Carsrud, A. L. (2000). Competing models of entrepreneurial intentions. Journal of Business Venturing, 15(5), 411-432.
Kuehn, K. W. (2008). Entrepreneurial intentions research: Implications for entrepreneurship education. Journal of Entrepreneurship Education, 11(6), 87-98.
Kuratko, D. F. (2005). The emergence of entrepreneurship education: development, trends, and challenges. Entrepreneurship: Theory and Practice, 29(5), 577-598.
Malewicki, D. S. & (Folker) Leitch, C. A. (2011). Female & male entrepreneurs' perceived value of formal networks: Are there differences? Journal of Small Business Strategy, 22(1), 1–20.
Markman, G. D., & Baron, R. A. (2003). Person–entrepreneurship fit: Why some people are more successful as entrepreneurs than others. Human Resource Management Review, 13(2), 281-301.
Matthews, C. H., & Brueggemann, R. F., (2015). Innovation & Entrepreneurship: A Competency Framework. New York, NY: Routledge Taylor & Francis Group.
Matthews, C. H., & Moser, S. (1996). A longitudinal investigation of the impact of family background and gender on interest in small firm ownership. Journal of Small Business Management, 34(2), 29-44.
Matthews, C. H., Schenkel, M. T, & Yates, M., (2015). Opportunity unchained: Seeking success. In S. Newbert (Ed.), Small business in a global economy: Creating and managing successful organizations (Vol. 1, pp. 185-214). Santa Barbara, CA: Praeger.
Neck, H. M., & Greene, P. G. (2011). Entrepreneurship education: Known worlds and new frontiers. Journal of Small Business Management, 49(1), 55-70.
Palich, L., & Bagby, R. (1995). Using cognitive theory to explain entrepreneurial risk taking: challenging conventional wisdom. Journal of Business Venturing, 10(6), 425-438.
Peterman, N. E., & Kennedy, J. (2003). Enterprise education: Influencing students’ perceptions of entrepreneurship. Entrepreneurship Theory and Practice, 28(2), 129-144.
Polanyi, M., (1967). The tacit dimension. London, United Kingdom: Routledge and Kegan.
Reynolds, P. D. (1997). Who starts new firms? Preliminary explorations of firms-in-gestation. Small Business Economics, 9(5), 449-462.
Robinson, P., & Sexton, E. (1994). The effect of education and experience on self-employment success.’ Journal of Business Venturing, 9(2), 141–156.
Ronstadt, R. (1988). The corridor principle. Journal of Business Venturing, 3(1), 31–40.
Seawright, K. W., Smith, I. H., Mitchell, R. K., & McClendon, R. (2011). Exploring entrepreneurial cognition in franchisees: A knowledge-structure approach. Entrepreneurship: Theory and Practice, 37(2), 201-227.
Schayek, R., & Dvir, D. (2011). The impact of public assistance programs on small businesses: strategic planning, entrepreneurship resource usage, and market orientation as mediating variables.’ Journal of Small Business Strategy, 22(1), 67–97.
Schenkel, M. T. (2004) New enterprise opportunity recognition: Toward a theory of entrepreneurial dynamism. University of Cincinnati, Cincinnati.
Scherer, R. F., Adams, J. S., Carley, S. S., & Wiebe, F. A. (1989). Role model performance effects on development of entrepreneurial career preference. Entrepreneurship: Theory and Practice, 13(3), 53-81.
Shane, S. (2000). Prior knowledge and the discovery of entrepreneurial opportunities. Organization Science, 11(4), 448-469.
Shane, S. (2003). The individual-opportunity nexus approach to entrepreneurship. Aldershot, United Kingdom: Edward Elgar.
Shapero A., & Sokol, L. (1982). Social dimensions of entrepreneurship. In C. Kent, D. Sexton, K. Vesper (Eds.), The encyclopedia of entrepreneurship, (pp. 72-90). Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice Hall.
Singh, R. P. (2000). Entrepreneurial opportunity recognition through social networks. New York, NY: Garland Publishing, Inc.
Smeltzer, L. R., Van Hook, B. L. & Hutt, R. W. (1991). Analysis of the use of advisors as information sources in venture startups. Journal of Small Business Management, 29(3), 10-20.
Solomon, G. & Matthews, C. H., 2014. The curricular confusion between entrepreneurship education and small business management: A qualitative analysis. In M. Morris (Ed.), Annals of entrepreneurship education and pedagogy (pp. 91-115). Cheltenham, UK: Edward Elgar Publishing.
Ucbasaran, D., Westhead, P., & Binks, M. (2003). Does entrepreneurial experience influence opportunity identification? Journal of Private Equity, 7(1), 7-14.
Volery, T., Müller, S., Oser, F., Naepflin, C., & Rey, N. (2013). ‘The impact of entrepreneurship education on human capital at upper-secondary level.’ Journal of Small Business Management, 51(3), 429-446.
Wernerfelt, B. (1984). A resource-based view of the firm. Strategic Management Journal, 5(2), 171-180.
Wilbanks, J. E. (2013). Mentoring and entrepreneurship: Examining the potential for entrepreneurship education and for aspiring new entrepreneurs. Journal of Small Business Strategy, 23(1), 93–101.
Wu, S., & Jung, J. Y. (2008). Is non-traditional entrepreneurship training helpful to nascent entrepreneurs? Yes and no. Journal of Entrepreneurship Education, 11, 43-51.
Zinger, J. T., LeBrasseur, R., & Zanibbi, L. R. (2001). Factors influencing early stage performance in Canadian microenterprises. Journal of Developmental Entrepreneurship, 6(2), 129-151.
How to Cite
SCHENKEL, Mark T. et al. Early Influences and Entrepreneurial Intent: Examining the Roles of Education, Experience, and Advice Networks. Journal of Small Business Strategy, [S.l.], v. 25, n. 2, p. 1-20, oct. 2015. ISSN 2380-1751. Available at: <https://libjournals.mtsu.edu/index.php/jsbs/article/view/558>. Date accessed: 25 apr. 2019.