University of Twente Student Theses


Work stress and coping behavior of high-tech start-up entrepreneurs

Morren, L.H. (2017) Work stress and coping behavior of high-tech start-up entrepreneurs.

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Abstract:Stress is a major aspect of entrepreneurship. However, there are contradicting findings on entrepreneurial stress and coping behavior. Entrepreneurs experience high job demands, but may be able to deal with these demands through their control and social support. This thesis aims to provide nuanced insights into the interplay of job demands, control, social support, work stress, and coping behavior of high-tech start-up entrepreneurs. The Job Demand Control Support (JDCS) model serves as a guiding framework. The study uses a qualitative approach, with a grid, storytelling technique, and semi-structured interview, complemented with an established scale for measuring burnout. The findings indicate that entrepreneurs experience a great variety of job demands and can use their control, social support, and time outs to cope with these demands. Furthermore, entrepreneurial characteristics seem to play a role in work stress. Entrepreneurs without prior start-up experience and co-founders experience stronger burnout symptoms. Also, the three social identity types experience different burnout symptoms and use different coping mechanisms, and the coping behavior of experienced entrepreneurs seems to depend on their personality traits. The study is able to apply the JDCS model to the high-tech start-up context and it enriches the model to consider personal characteristics.
Item Type:Essay (Master)
Faculty:BMS: Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences
Subject:85 business administration, organizational science
Programme:Business Administration MSc (60644)
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