Research from a German psychologist using Swedish data has shown that successful entrepreneurs were significantly more likely to have skipped school and committed petty thefts as youngsters.
Psychologist Martin Obschonka found that despite their early misdemeanours, when they grew up there was little difference between entrepreneurs and the rest of the adult population in terms of their rebellious behaviour.
Obschonka based his findings on a Swedish study that followed the lives of around 1,000 people from the same age group over 40 years from the Swedish town of Örebro.
He said that the data was based on questioning the study’s participants to see which of them showed entrepreneurial spirit in later life. One in five men and eight percent of women went on to become entrepreneurs.
Obschonka presented his findings in the Journal of Vocational Behaviour and said they could also be applied to Germany.
Scientists already believe that questioning the norm and having a rebellious nature can help a person’s productivity and entrepreneurial spirit, but they also need courage to launch a start-up.