The impacts of human capital in enhancing new venture's performance

Ming‐Huei Chen (Graduate Institute of Technology Management, National Chung Hsing University, Taichung, Taiwan)
Yu‐Yu Chang (Graduate Institute of Technology Management, National Chung Hsing University, Taichung, Taiwan)

Journal of Knowledge-based Innovation in China

ISSN: 1756-1418

Publication date: 28 June 2013



This paper aims to extend current understanding about the relationship between human capital and new venture performance. Human capital has increasingly become one of the critical intellectual resources in enhancing firm's success, however little work has been done in enriching the knowledge of this link from a small entrepreneurial new venture context. Many researchers have studied human capital from various angles, but few have analyzed human capital's influence on firm performance from entrepreneurial competence, motivation and creativity perspectives to ascertain their effects on new venture performance, including profit generation and patent creation.


This study was conducted using 155 small technology‐based new ventures located in government incubators on university campuses throughout Taiwan.


The authors found that entrepreneurial experience, manpower and creativity have positive impact on new venture's performance assessed by using profitability and patents creation as the criterion variables. Amongst all predictors, entrepreneurial manpower was found to have the strongest effect on both profitability and patent creation. The most interesting finding, however, stemmed from a component of entrepreneurial motivation the authors created, pioneering motivation. This unique form of motivation, to explain the extreme determination and time involved in starting a new business, was found to have a significantly negative effect on patent creation.

Research limitations/implications

This study identifies the variety of entrepreneurial human capital and the importance of human capital's multidimensionality in entrepreneurship research. In this paper, the authors integrated some meaningful components of human capital which have been neglected in previous entrepreneurship studies. The paper's findings add to knowledge of how investments in entrepreneurial human capital, such as work experience, manpower, and creativity, influence performance outcomes at the early stages of the entrepreneurial process.


This paper provides a useful guideline for entrepreneurs by investigating new venture performance with seven less‐emphasized but important components of human capital. The authors identified the most influential components of entrepreneurial human capital (i.e. experience, manpower, and creativity) that a new venture should cultivate for improving its performance.



Chen, M. and Chang, Y. (2013), "The impacts of human capital in enhancing new venture's performance", Journal of Knowledge-based Innovation in China, Vol. 5 No. 2, pp. 146-168.

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