Time is not money! Temporal preferences for time investments and entry into entrepreneurship

Moreno, C G, Sloof, R and Crilly, D (2024) Time is not money! Temporal preferences for time investments and entry into entrepreneurship. Organization Science, 35 (2). pp. 622-643. ISSN 1047-7039 OPEN ACCESS


Starting a business requires investing both money and time in the hope of future financial benefits. Since investments and potential gains happen over time, the way in which individuals value the future relative to the present—i.e., their temporal preferences—may be an important driver behind the decision to become an entrepreneur. Whereas existing research examines temporal preferences for financial gains, we advance this research by theorizing about temporal preferences not only for money, but also for the future time commitments that entrepreneurship entails. Results from a lab-in-the-field study show that individuals who heavily discount future time investments are more likely to become entrepreneurs. In two follow-up studies, we confirm that recent startup founders discount future time investments more than salaried workers. We also provide suggestive evidence of the mechanisms at play: recent startup founders perceive the future differently than salaried workers, both viewing themselves as more agentic vis-à-vis the future and perceiving the future as more distant. We discuss the implications of temporal preferences—not only for money, but also for time—for understanding the behavioral drivers of entrepreneurship

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Item Type: Article
Subject Areas: Strategy and Entrepreneurship
Date Deposited: 20 Jun 2023 13:44
Date of first compliant deposit: 20 Jun 2023
Last Modified: 14 Apr 2024 00:42
URI: https://lbsresearch.london.edu/id/eprint/2842

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