RT Vol XIII Ch. 2: The Relationship Between Hardiness and Entrepreneurship
From the Book: The Refractive Thinker®: Vol XIII: Entrepreneurship: Growing the Future of Business


Thriving in the market is challenging, despite the rapid growth of entrepreneurial and small businesses. One major concern is the number of entrepreneurs and small business owners entering the market is equal to the number of businesses exiting the market. The general problem is the survival rate for entrepreneurs and small business owners in the market. Several factors may contribute to the survival rate challenge for business owners. External factors such as market research, product viability, demographics, and geographical locations may impact success. However, internal factors may also impact entrepreneurial and small business success. One internal factor is psychological hardiness. The term psychological hardiness refers to the following traits: commitment, challenge, and control. The qualitative portion of the study indicated that entrepreneurs and small business owners identified multiple psychological hardiness traits as contributing factors to their success. Business owners self-identified commitment, challenge, and control as the top three contributing factors to business success. The Dispositional Resilience Scale (DRS-15), a psychological hardiness assessment tool, determined business owner’s scores within each hardiness trait. The DRS-15 scores indicated the individual’s level of commitment, the ability to manage challenges, and the level of control the individual believed he or she possessed. One of the keys to surviving within the market is for business owners to: (a) understand how commitment, challenge, and control contributes to success, (b) identify areas for growth within each trait, and (c) focus on improving in the areas identified for growth.
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