1 Review of National Development Policy and The Way Forward For University on Measurement For Entrepreneurial Personality Characteristics *Dr. Navidreza Boromandalipoor Department of Public Management Mashhad branch Azad University Mashhad, Iran **Nayeresadat Ghozat Perdana School of science, Technology and innovation policy, Ph.D. candidate University Technology Malaysia (UTM) ABSTRACT The Iran National Development Policy aims at strengthening government capacity for the sustainability of economic growth. One of the ways is to examine the entrepreneurship capacity to address unemployment issues due to economic sanction impose to Iran. Therefore, it is very important to identify and nurture students who possess entrepreneurial characteristics at university level. To help the country, this research looks at the measurement of Entrepreneurial Personality Characteristics (EPC) that would be suitable to students in Iranian universities. Considering that there are varied personality characteristics of entrepreneurs, this research seeks to select the best and most appropriate personality characteristics for Iranian students by using the Analytical Hierarchy Process (AHP). As a result, six EPC have been selected such as the need for achievement, risk taking, internal locus of control, creativity, challenge seeking and tolerance of ambiguity are the most appropriate traits for Iranian students. The respondents consist of 1040 students selected at random in three universities of Iran which is chosen based on stratified sampling. The results show that the mean for risk-taking, need to achievement, challenging, and creativity among the students in Iranian universities are below than the average standard score. In contrast, tolerance of ambiguity and locus of control are the strongest. Key words: Entrepreneurship, Entrepreneurial Personality Characteristics (EPC), Analytical Hierarchy Process (AHP).
2 Introduction Today, with the increased speed of knowledge and telecommunication technology there are many changes in society. So, Iran's old and experienced higher educational systems do not have sufficient capacities to face the current societal needs. They face numerous challenges, obstacles and need to change and reform pretty rapidly (Rasian, 2009). At present, based on available authorized statistics, 15.6% of graduates, after leaving university have not been able to find employment (Statistical Center of Iran, 2013). Generally, in Iran, the government is the main and the biggest source of employment, particularly for fresh university graduates. The development of entrepreneurship in Iran requires comprehensive activities with respect to some political, economic, cultural, social and psychological factors. This is due to the high unemployment rates and government downsizing in Iran. One of the challenges faced by the country is the huge number of unemployed graduates. Among the reasons cited is the lack of entrepreneurial skills among graduates and their abilities to set up a business. This indicates the necessity of preparing university graduates by developing the entrepreneurial traits. This preparation in entrepreneurial traits should not be after graduation, but should be done during the educational period in the universities (Rasian, 2009). Entrepreneurship traits have an important role in changing the attitude of students towards self-employment and preparing them to manage new businesses on their own. Acquiring such skills, entrepreneurial personality characteristics training for the students is an added value (Nelson and Johnson, 1997). In fact, entrepreneurial characteristics are a key factor in increasing production and employment, a solution to eliminate unemployment, and one of the main factors for economic growth (Petrin, 1997, Smit, 2004, Heizer and Render, 2004, Higgins and Morgan, 2000).Most scholars and experts in the field of business have identified entrepreneurial characteristics as one of the key factors of success in the world's competitive markets (Heizer and Render, 2004). However, few studies have been done in the field of characteristics and tendency of students with entrepreneurial characteristics. The reality is that development of entrepreneurship in society requires identifying and nurturing people with characteristics of entrepreneurship and supports them. Hence, there is the question: Are there personality characteristics of entrepreneurship in Iranian students? The answer to this question is still not clear. This article is seeking answers to this question.
3 Research Questions It is obvious that, entrepreneurial personality characteristics are the major factors which differentiate between entrepreneurs with non- entrepreneurs (Frank et al., 2007). The main purpose of this research is a measurement of entrepreneurial personality characteristics among Iranian university students. a) Which of the Entrepreneurial Personality Characteristics are suitable for Iranian students based on the AHP method? b) To what extent does the Entrepreneurial Personality Characteristics measure the central tendency suitable for Iranian university students? c) How is the new Entrepreneurial Personality Characteristic model suitable for Iranian university students? Entrepreneurial personality characteristics Different studies have on entrepreneurship have identified specific characteristics for entrepreneurs. In fact, so many entrepreneurs have wonderful success stories compared to other people. Hence, it should be expressed that entrepreneurs have different traits in all fields and business they conduct.however, there are many personality characteristics of entrepreneurs. In addition, entrepreneurs with such personality characteristics can be successful on their new business (Aghazamani, 2010). Some important opinions about the personality characteristics of entrepreneurship are mentioned in the table below: Table 1: Characteristics of entrepreneurs Row Author(s) Date Characteristics 1 Mill 1848 Risk taking 2 Schumpeter 1934 Innovation/creativity 5 McClelland 1961 Risk taking, need for achievement 6 Welsh & White 1981 Need to control, responsibility seeker, self-confidence, challenge taker, moderate risk taker 7 Kent 1990 Internal locus of control, discipline, risk taking, tolerance of ambiguity 8 Gibb 1998 Internal locus of control, autonomy, moderate risk taking, need for achievement, self-confidence 9 Kerrick 2008 Need to achievement, tendencies to risk- taking, locus of control
4 10 Abdul Halim 2011 Need for achievement, locus of control, creativity, Opportunism 11 Arasteh&Enayati 2012 Risk taking, focus of control, need for achievement, Creativity, challenge seeking Source: Researcher s own construction (2015) In recent years, much research has been done to investigate and identify the personality characteristics of entrepreneurs, but the results obtained are different. Personality characteristics of entrepreneurs are affected by several variables, such as environmental factors, cultural, social etc (Goleman et al., 2002). Furthermore, all of researchers confirmed that personality characteristics have a direct relationship with starting a new business, business performance and success (Zhen-hua et al., 2007). The Personality Characteristics and AHP Method In this study, researcher choose and measure the best and most appropriate Entrepreneurial Personality Characteristics for Iranian students using the Analytical Hierarchy Process (AHP). The respondents consist of response from the opinion of twenty Iranian professionals in entrepreneurship, including professors and experts in universities. This process is then followed by evaluation of all the characteristics based on three criteria suitability, measurable, and important by Expert Choice Software. After the analysis, the following results are obtained: Figure 4.1 The results of AHP by the Expert Choice Software In fact, Expert Choice software helps researcher to decrease time in displaying hierarchical structure of decision-makings and select the best traits using Analytic Hierarchy Process (AHP) for the 12 Entrepreneurial Personality Characteristics. The main aim is to examine, choose and
5 measure the best and most appropriate Entrepreneurial Personality Characteristics for Iranian students. As a result, according to the experts, six of entrepreneurial personality characteristics such as need for achievement, risk taking, internal locus of control, creativity, challenge seeking and tolerance of ambiguity are the most appropriate characteristics for Iranian students. This result supports the views of scholars such as Arasteh and Enayati (2012), Gibb (1998). Methodology In this investigation, descriptive and inferential statistical methods are used to analyse the data and to test the hypotheses. The main purpose of this research is a measurement of entrepreneurial personality characteristics among Iranian university students. This study only focuses on university students in the various zones of the Republic of Iran namely. In addition, use standardised questionnaire consists of 95 questions that proceed to measure the six factors of key personality traits in entrepreneurship. The respondents consist of 1040 female and male students selected at random in three universities of Iran which is chosen based on stratified sampling. Finding Multiple regression analysis has been used to test the extent of the variables can predict EPS separately. To understand whether there exists relationship between 6 variables and EPC scores the researcher needs to evaluate the model. The result of the below table shows that of the variance in the dependent variable (EPC scores) is explained by the model (which includes the variables of Creativity, Ambiguity, Risk, Control, Challenge, Achievement). This means that the model (which includes Creativity, Ambiguity, Risk, Control, Challenge, and Achievement) explains 97.8 per cent of the variance in EPC scores. This is quite a respectable result. Table 2 Model Summary (EPC) Summary Model R R Square Adjusted R Square Std. Error of the Estimate b b. Predictors: (Constant), Creativity, Ambiguity, Risk, Control, Challenge, Achievement On this regards, the researcher wants to know is which of the variables included in the model contribute to the prediction of the dependent variable. This information can be found in the Coefficients table (Table 2). To compare the different variables, it is important that to look at the standardised coefficients. The table shows that the values for each of the different variables have
6 been converted to the same scale so that it can be compared. In this study, the researcher is interested in comparing the contribution of each independent variable. Therefore, the researcher uses the beta values. By studying the Beta standardied coefficients column, the researcher confirms the beta value which is the largest. In this case the largest beta coefficient is 0.366, which is for creativity scale. This means that this variable makes the strongest unique contribution to explaining the dependent variable which is EPS, when the variance explained by all other variables in the model is controlled. The Beta value for seeking the challenge scale was strongly lower (0.132), indicating that it made less of a unique contribution. Table 3 Beta Standardized Coefficients Model Mean SD Beta Standardized t Sig. Part Correlations Coefficients (Constant) Risk Control Achievement Ambiguity Challenge Creativity For each of these variables, it is crucial to check the value in the column marked Sig. This indicates whether this variable is making a statistically significant unique contribution to the equation. This is very dependent on which variables are included in the equation and how much overlap there is among the independent variables. Based on above considerations, the all variables are making a significant unique contribution to the prediction of the dependent variable. From above discussion it can be said that the results of the regression indicate that the 6 predictors which are Creativity, Seeking the challenge, Ambiguity tolerance, need to achieve, locus of control and Risk-taking are related to EPC scores. This means that the total variance explained by the model as a whole was 97.8%, (R² =.978, F (6, 1033) = , p < 0.05). It was found that the 6 variables, statistically significantly predicted EPC scores among Iranian university students.
7 Implications The main objective of this study was to measure the entrepreneurial personal characteristics among Iranian universities students. One of the main issues concerned with entrepreneurship is that whether individuals are born entrepreneurs or achieve that during the period of education. In fact, this research identified suitable of Entrepreneurial Personality Characteristics among Iranian students. The results of this study contributed a significant implication for the review of the Iranian National Development Policy. This study helps the government of the Islamic Republic of Iran, policy makers, universities in this country and other institutions to develop training programs to promote sustainable entrepreneurship programs. The finding of this research can be used to develop targeted interventions aimed at entrepreneurship programs in developing countries such as Iran. Furthermore, the findings of the research suggest that Entrepreneurial Personality Characteristics among university students have the implication of them setting up new business in the future. The findings of this study suggest a new model which consists of the six Entrepreneurial Personality Characteristics for Iranian university students which are, a) Creativity, b) Ambiguity of tolerance, c) risk taking, d) locus of control, e) challenge seeking and f) need to achieve. This research has several practical implications for universities. For university managers, the results of this research may be helpful in facilitating entrepreneurship programs to increase the added value for students. This research indicates that entrepreneurship can be fostered as a result of good training programs. Management science experts who analyze technical dimensions believe that students can be taught in the classroom and be trained to develop entrepreneurial skills. Consequently, top management personnel; of the university should be aware that entrepreneurship plays a big role and is an important key performance index for the university. One of the key performance indexes refer to activities related to entrepreneurship programs conducted by the universities in Iran. For example, university management must implement the teaching of entrepreneurship skills in the curriculum to address issues regarding economic instability so that the young generation knows how to act and deal with insecure and complex situations along with changing laws and regulations. Conclusion Entrepreneurship education in countries such as Iran is growing rapidly due to policy changes and downsizing of job opportunities in the public sector.thus, the research and studies
8 need to focus on the most efficient, pedagogical, methodological and theoretical approaches to teaching and learning entrepreneurship in different settings in different higher learning institutions (Karimi et al., 2010). The review of the research in entrepreneurship in Iran shows that there is lack of compressive research in entrepreneurship particularly in entrepreneurship education. Similarly, the lack of empirical research on Entrepreneurial Personality Characteristics is important to improve entrepreneurship education in Iran (Karimi et al., 2010). Based on literature review of this study, it can be concluded that entrepreneurship, among students of higher education institutions has gained importance and acknowledgement over the past decade in developing countries particularly Iran. The National Development Policy provides evidence of the importance of entrepreneurship during this economic sanction whereby there is scarcity of job opportunities. However, to address the above problem the findings of this research showed that Entrepreneurial Personality Characteristics is a very important factor for a developing country such as Iran. This finding supports the views of researchers such as Wilson (2004), Hardy(1999), Rasian (2009), Karimi et al(2010),and Rezaei and Rahsepar (2009). The findings of the current study showed that the majority of the students who would graduates in the future, do not have desirable personality characteristics of entrepreneurship. For this reason, they often seeked employment in government agencies after graduation. This is one of the main causes of the failure of the entrepreneurial programs and development in Iran. The Implication of this research for higher education policy makers and for those who manage and implement entrepreneurial training programs is that the entrepreneurial personality characteristics may contribute to economic growth and address the Iran National Development Policy. Thus students need to be trained and educated in entrepreneurship skills to sustain themselves after graduating to earn a living and this effort contributes to socio-economic growth. Hence, the current study supports the notion of Peter Drucker, that entrepreneurship is a behavior based on theory, and not on inspiration and illumination. Finally, this research findings also shows that identification of Entrepreneurial Personality Characteristics is suitable for Iranian university students and is necessary, to be successful in setting up a new business (Drucker, 2006).
9 Recommendations Based on the results of the current study, entrepreneurship generally should be considered as an important and essential factor by all public institutions and organizations to address unemployment. In Iran, the field of entrepreneurship education is still relatively at infancy stage, and therefore, it is necessary that government support is needed to ensure sustainability (Karimi et al., 2012). Based on the research findings a set of strategies are proposed, taking into consideration the outcome of the objectives, previous studies along with cultural, political, social, economic and the policy of Iran, to be implemented in the potential university who may apply EPC for their students. Thus, this study recommends that entrepreneurship education in universities should be implemented during the duration of the study for three groups of students: i. Public education should include entrepreneurship in the university curriculum and is compulsory for all students. ii. Students who possess high performance in EPC have the potential to be successful in launching a business. This study recommends special entrepreneurship education programs just for them. This category of students is more prepared to absorb and utilize educational materials, and they have a high level of entrepreneurial personality characteristics (Rahmati et al., 2010). iii. Special entrepreneurship programs as a support to help stabilize and continue earning their living for students who have already become entrepreneurs, selfemployed and have established jobs while they are still studying in the university.
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