Abstract

Built on regulatory focus theory (Higgins, 1997), this research suggests that entrepreneurs’ dispositional regulatory focus orientations will interact with the nature of their prior entrepreneurial experiences (i.e. financial success or failure) to determine their subsequent intentions to reenter entrepreneurship. The theory suggests that individuals react to the same performance feedback quite differently (Van-Dijk & Kluger, 2004), and this leads to a different level of motivations as well as different behaviors. While some people are more motivated by past success than failure because past success further enhances their desires to fulfill their achievement needs, others are more motivated by past failure than success because past failure triggers their desires to avoid future failure and maintain their safety needs. Applying the regulatory focus lens to entrepreneurship, this research argues that entrepreneurs with different dispositional regulatory focus orientations would react to the outcome of prior venture differently. This elicits their different levels of intentions to reenter entrepreneurship.

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