Only in the last couple of decades have scientists begun to delineate the nomological web of constructs that relate to the entrepreneurial process. The task is far from complete. In fact, many of the most exciting individual-level linkages are only just being discovered (Baron, 2010; Baum & Bird, 2010; Grégoire, Corbett, & McMullen, 2011; Haynie, Shepherd, Mosakowski, & Earley, 2010; Lanivich, 2011; Vengrouskie, 2011; Zhao, Seibert, & Lumpkin, 2010a; Zhao, Li, Lee, & Chen, 2010b). Yet, to adequately measure the variables for generalizable results, the concept of entrepreneurial success is reviewed and an alternative, multi-dimensional approach to operationalizing the construct is offered and implemented in research design.
Investigation results reveal evidence for additional viable constructs for inquiry in the context of entrepreneurship by validating relationships between cognitive factors and entrepreneurial success. Also, by exhibiting how the boundary conditions of the cognitive relationships in entrepreneurship function within, a clearer picture of what is affecting entrepreneurs is gained. Furthermore, it is especially important for a developing field of research to distinguish itself with distinct and testable theory and constructs (Kuhn, 1962; Mullen, Budeva, & Doney, 2009; Sutton & Staw, 1995). Results of incremental validity tests revealed the resource-induced coping heuristic (RICH) as a robust predictor of arguably the most important entrepreneurial outcome, success. This dissertation promotes the field of entrepreneurship as a remarkable, researchable division of organizational and psychological science by demonstrating predictive validity of newly developed constructs for use in the investigation of the entrepreneurial process. The implications of the contributions listed above, along with the strengths and limitations of the study, are discussed, and recommendations for future research are offered.