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Employee with entrepreneurial mindset from the perspective of career success

This is something a lot of organisations dream of. In the light of uncertain, dynamic, complex and volatile environment it would be great to have somebody working for you not requiring instructions, able to take decisions and risks, assume accountability and always act in the best interest of employer. Sound too good to be true? Together with my colleagues we spent some time to research the individual values and behaviours driving career success of employees and entrepreneurs.

Responses of 348 employees and 77 entrepreneurs were anaylised. What we have found that employees are really diverse group. They are driven by such values as universalism seeking the harmony, and stimulation - finding new exciting adventures. They look to be safe, and they strive for the achievements. It's very individual, maybe even personal. The one value serving career success for employees is self-direction. Ability to fulfill one's talant is securing career success.

On the other hand - there was no specific individual value identified which frames the entrepreneurs for the career success. So, any value system can make person to be successful, and obviously some further research will be required.

When it come to behaviours, they are pretty unlike. Entrepreneurs care for being respected by their peers compared to employees who are more concerned about receiving good performance evaluation. Entrepreneurs tend to strive for earnings which are adequate with regard to their effort, whereas employees seek to be fairly awarded compared to their peers. Entrepreneurs are working up to their abilities, but employees are overcoming obstacles. Yeah, and no matter what, entrepreneurs will put the relationships first.

So what shall organisations do? It's clear that just a call for entrepreneurial mindset and attitude will not work out. There too wide gap between thinking and acting ways of emloyees and entrepreneurs. But what might work is clear instructions on the way how the job shall be done in entrepreneurial way. Because employees are willing to conform (another value typical to employees), and they will do the best to meet the expectations.



Gaile, A.Baumane-Vitolina, I.Sumilo, E.Skiltere, D. and Flores, R. (2019), "Values and career behaviours of entrepreneurs and employees", International Journal of Entrepreneurial Behavior & Research, Vol. ahead-of-print No. ahead-of-print.

Savickas, M.L.and Porfeli, E. J. (2012), “Career Adapt-Abilities Scale: Construction, Reliability and Measurement Equivalence Across 13 Countries”, Journal of Vocational Behavior, No. 80, pp. 661–673.

Schwartz, S. H. (2012), An Overview of the Schwartz Theory of Basic Values. Online Readings in Psychology and Culture, Vol. 2, No. 1, available at: (accessed 13 November 2018)


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