Fear of Failure and Entrepreneurship – Exec Summary

Fear of Failure and Entrepreneurship - Exec Summary

One of the most common fears among entrepreneurs is called the fear of failure (Bosma et al. 2008). Drawing on psychological and socio-psychological theories, the experience of fear of failure can be described as the appraisal of threats in evaluative situations with the potential for failure (Conroy 2001). These situations activate cognitive schema or beliefs associated with the aversive consequences of failing and may cause different behavioural responses: approach the threat aggressively (fight), avoid facing the situation (flight), or be paralyzed in the situation (freeze) (Conroy 2004; Gray 1971; Elliot 1997). However, an examination of the entrepreneurship literature shows that the fear of failure is predominantly assumed to be a barrier to entrepreneurship.