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How I became an entrepreneur: an exploratory study of young start-up entrepreneurs

Ameesh Ajantha Samalopanan (IFMR GSB, KREA University, Sri City, India)
Vijayalakshmi Balasubramaniam (IFMR GSB, KREA University, Sri City, India)

South Asian Journal of Business Studies

ISSN: 2398-628X

Article publication date: 6 October 2020

Issue publication date: 19 October 2021

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Abstract

Purpose

Though extant literature has mapped various stages of start-up enterprise growth, there is limited research on the phases that an entrepreneur traverses before the enterprise is started and established as a venture. The paper attempts to understand the lived experiences of young Indians as they negotiate the entrepreneurial path.

Design/methodology/approach

Qualitative method, where primary data were collected using in-depth interviews of 15 start-up entrepreneurs. These narratives were compared with Bansal's descriptions of entrepreneurs in her book “Connect the dots”. The interview transcripts and the detailed descriptions were analysed for emergent themes.

Findings

Results indicated that there are five distinct stages in the development of a start-up entrepreneur; namely – pre-entrepreneurial stage, inflexion point, cocoon period, initial stage, crisis stage and, depending upon the success factors and support received during crisis stage, either a success stage or failure stage.

Originality/value

This is a narrative-based, qualitative approach to understand the lived experiences of young start-up entrepreneurs in India and an attempt to map developmental phases. The fact that India is a fast-growing market for start-ups and the higher rate of failure of start-ups in India makes the study relevant.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

This papers forms a part of special section “Management in the Era of Disruption: Insights from India”, guest edited by Vishal Gupta, Naresh Khatri and Karthik Dhandapani.

Citation

Samalopanan, A.A. and Balasubramaniam, V. (2021), "How I became an entrepreneur: an exploratory study of young start-up entrepreneurs", South Asian Journal of Business Studies, Vol. 10 No. 3, pp. 342-356. https://doi.org/10.1108/SAJBS-03-2020-0067

Publisher

:

Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2020, Emerald Publishing Limited

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