Abstract

One critical factor in the success of entrepreneurial ventures is access to experienced mentors who provide both advice as well as access to their own entrepreneurial. The goal of this paper is identify those motivations which prompt entrepreneurial and non-entrepreneurial mentors to volunteer their time with formal mentoring organizations (FMOs), and examine the relationship between these motivations and (1) mentor behavior and (2) mentor satisfaction. Some motives are related to the mentor’s own entrepreneurial goals, including the desire to (1) increase one’s visibility and the perceived legitimacy of one’s own venture, (2) expand one’s entrepreneurial network, and (3) identify investment and consulting opportunities. Other motives that are not related to a mentor’s entrepreneurial goals are also important, including (4) altruism (the desire to help others and the desire to give back), (5) learning, and (6) self-enhancement. We will refer to the first set of motivations as Extrinsic motivations, and the second as Intrinsic motivations. Because intrinsic motivations can be satisfied (at least in part) by the process of interacting with mentees, we expect Intrinsic motivations to have a stronger relationship both with the time mentors spend with mentees and the satisfaction mentors have with the mentee relationships.

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