Motivated by the poorly understood nature of the term “mindsets” in the domain of entrepreneurship, we embarked on an exploration encompassing three research goals: a) defining and assessing growth mindsets in entrepreneurship, b) investigating how growth mindsets in entrepreneurship correlate with personality constructs, and c) exploring how growth mindsets predict motivation related to being an entrepreneur. Overall, findings from a sample of entrepreneurs (n = 264) and non-entrepreneurs (n = 330) reveal evidence consistent with the inference that a unidimensional, ‘growth mindset in entrepreneurship’ (GME) construct underlies five distinct mindset measures closely related to entrepreneurship: mindsets of leadership, mindsets of creativity, person mindsets, mindsets of intelligence, and mindsets of entrepreneurial ability. This GME construct correlated positively with conscientiousness and openness (albeit with small effects), but did not consistently correlate with extraversion, agreeableness, or neuroticism. We also found significant and positive relations for the GME with resilience and need for achievement, but a significant (and unexpected) negative correlation with risk-taking. With respect to motivation (operationalized via expectancy-value theory), GME predicted self-efficacy, but only for individuals who did not identify as entrepreneurs. GME exhibited limited utility in predicting enjoyment, utility, or identity evaluations related to value, but was robustly linked to cost evaluations. We discuss the implications of these findings and suggest directions for future research.
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