Influence of personality traits and social background on success
The success of a person depends on a number of factors. Personality, attitude, social life etc. play a major role in the success of a person and in particular the entrepreneurial success. Researchers and writers at various locations have written that how personality impacts a person's life. Personality: what makes you the way we are is an example of this. The writer emphasizes the way personality affects a person's life (Nettle, 2007). Even genetic factors are responsible to some extent for a person who becomes entrepreneur. Genes are the ones which contribute towards the development of a person's personality. And this personality is one of the major factors in the development of the person as an entrepreneur.
The thinking people usually have when you ask about successful entrepreneur is a male of around 35 or 45 of age, tall and handsome, and they associate certain other physical characteristics with the person. This stereotype is however not believed by a broad-minded and educated person. Personality does not end here. It includes many other factors that in large influence the entrepreneurial success of a person.
The influence of a person's traits can be seen by the thought which different researchers and writers give. They associate different personal traits with the successful entrepreneurs. One of the personal factors responsible for the entrepreneurial success is the intrinsic motivation. One who is motivated in the right direction will achieve the success rather than the one with low motivation or the one having the right level motivation but in wrong direction. The habit of hard work also is in personality of the person. If the person is hard-working, the probability of the entrepreneurial success raises (Stolze, 2009). Number of researches has shown that almost all of the successful entrepreneurs are hard workers. It is in nature of a person whether he conforms to the line made by the others or he made his own line to work and get through. Leadership is a big personal ability which impact at large to the success of a person. Ones who are better leader and at their nature is like that of a leader, their success probabilities are very much higher than that of persons having low leadership qualities. Judgment and sharpness is another personal quality which we can see in many successful entrepreneurs. Many of them have not even attended college and even then they make quick decisions based on their judgment.
Willing to take risks is ability which some people have while others prefer not to take risks and be the way that involves no risk. Entrepreneurs who are successful, are high in this regard. (Bither, 2006). They are not the blind gambles but take calculated risks. Gambling and excessive risk taking without calculation is the trait we must not associate with a successful person. These people rarely get success in the long run.
The biggest name when we talk about personal traits of an entrepreneur comes is the name of Big five factors. It is also called Personality Trait Theory (Nevid, 2008). The five factors determine one's personality and tell whether he or she has the personal traits of a good entrepreneur or not. It has five dimensions of personality and a person is rated differently at dimensions. Agreeableness, Openness to change, Extraversion, Conscientiousness and Neuroticism are its dimensions (Kienlen, 2004). Each person is either higher or lower in each of these. It is one of the useful models to determine one's personality (Mathis, Jackson, 2007). Research has shown that there is an impact of genes when we consider the big five traits or in other words traits of a person are to some extent developed by genes.
Agreeableness as defined by various scholars is the ability to agree to certain point. Agree with peers, bosses or subordinates. A person high in this regard tends to agree to others' points of view. A person low in this regard, opposes others' points of views and does not agree. Agreeable people are trusting, compromising, cooperative and tolerant (Bernardin, 2007). It depends on the job type whether an entrepreneur should be agreeable or not. If a job needs agreeableness and the entrepreneur has it then there is a fair chance of success. It is a personal trait and if the entrepreneur has it at optimal level as demanded by the job type then success depends on it. So in other words, agreeableness is one of the personal traits, that impacts the success of an entrepreneur.
The second thing here is openness to change. If a person is open to change he will be creative and curious. He is always looking for changes and adaptable to changes ( Leary, Hoyle, 2009). It is also one of the personal traits. As in case with the agreeableness, openness to change also depends on the job type. If the job demands high openness to changes then the open person will prove to be the best of the entrepreneurs like the jobs involving creativity. On the other hand if the person is close to change and he works as an entrepreneur for a creative industry like advertising then the success probability will be low. That is how this trait impacts the success of entrepreneur.(Santrock, 2007)
The next trait of Big Five Model we will be discussing is the extraversion. According to the model a person can be an introvert or an extrovert. The trait speaks about the sociability of the person (Wieten, 2010). How much a person is assertive and expressive are covered here. An extrovert is the person who is sociable and form relations quickly. He likes working with people. Here again the job type's demands are considered. Sales people need extraversion at large. Entrepreneurs with extraversion may prove better because they have to work with people.
Neuroticism is another trait that personality trait theory describes. It is also called emotional stability. A person low at neuroticism has ability to easily experience negative emotions (Northouse, 2010). A person who is emotionally stable can bear easily the anger, depression and anxiety. On the other hand the person on the other side who is not the emotionally stable easily get emotional on any such situations (Raad, B., 2000). When analyzing anyone it is one of the most important components. Again like the previous one, there is more probability that a person who is emotionally prove as better entrepreneurs but then again it is not always necessary.
The last of the traits described by personality trait theory is Conscientiousness. A person who is very much organized, he completes his work on time and follow the deadlines (Pastorino, Doyle, 2005). He plans his steps and aims what he wants to achieve and follow self-discipline. On the other hand the one who is low in this regard will be unorganized and his acts are always spontaneous (Coon, Mitterer, 2007). Most of the jobs require a person to be conscientious and organized. There is more probability that a person high in this regard will prove as a successful entrepreneur rather than the one who is low in conscientiousness.big five personality traits are among the most used traits(Eysenck, 2004).
The next part to cover is that how the social environment of the person affects its success as an entrepreneur. This topic has also been researched thoroughly. Besides the person's personality and attitude, there is a lot impact of his social environment in his success. The social conditions in his environment and the atmosphere in which he finds himself influence his work and ultimately his performance and success.
If a person finds his relatives, family and friends supportive to him then his success probability increase. There is a lot evidences and to some extent it might be true that people are advised to start the business before having spouse and children. This is because a person having a spouse and children will have to spend more time with them entertaining them that might weaken his workplace performance and ultimately his entrepreneurial success. The thought also depends on the person. If a person who likes to get support from his family and wants them to back him always will perceive this in a different way. He will say that in tough times where workload is high usually in the start of the businesses he needs his spouse and children to support him. This thought is handicapped to that if the spouse is supportive to him or not and if she's not then the success probability will decrease.
Another aspect to cover in this regard is that social background also affects the person's personality which in turn affects the probability of the success of a person as an entrepreneur. The brought up of the person and his social life impacts the personality at large. A proverb says that a man is known by the company he keeps. So this says that a person is similar to his friends and so his personality develops in the similar and alike way as of his social gatherings. A neglected child from the beginning always develops his personality as a non-social person who will like to live alone because he has not been given importance from the beginning and so his perception for people is negative. In the same way other factors of a person's social background affects his personality and it is developed accordingly. The point I am making here is that there is a strong relation between one's social background and his personality and, personality in large determines the person's success as an entrepreneur.
So to conclude I must say it is a fact that personality traits in large determine a person's success as an entrepreneur. There are many evidences for the facts and the thought is proven again and again. The other part was the influence of social background on entrepreneurial success of a person. A person's social background and his environment also affect his performance. The social background also affects person's personality that in large affect his success as an entrepreneur.