Academy of Entrepreneurship Journal (Print ISSN: 1087-9595; Online ISSN: 1528-2686)

Research Article: 2023 Vol: 29 Issue: 2S

Relationship between Entrepreneurial Competencies and Entrepreneurial Intention of Management Students: Do Gender have an Impact?

Nisha Devi, Central University of Himachal Pradesh

Citation Information: Devi, N. (2023). Relationship between entrepreneurial competencies and entrepreneurial intention of management students: does gender have an impact? Academy of Entrepreneurship Journal, 29(S2), 1-15.


Purpose: Present study is an attempt to examine the relationship between entrepreneurial competencies and entrepreneurial intentions of management students studying in the universities of Himachal Pradesh. Also, effort has been made to understand the effect of gender on the entrepreneurial competencies and entrepreneurial intentions of the management students.

Design/Methodology/Approach: Cross sectional research design has been adopted. Data was collected through structured questionnaire from 223 enrolled management students. Purposive sampling method adopted to collect the sample data.

Findings: The results of the study indicated that only two competencies have an impact on entrepreneurial intention of students’. Also, the findings revealed that gender do not have an effect on the entrepreneurial intentions of the students. Whereas, in case of entrepreneurial competencies, only two competencies i.e. opportunity recognition and relationship possess a significant difference among man and woman management students.

Practical Implications: The study provides an agenda on which college, universities and educational institutions should work to inculcate the required entrepreneurial competencies among the youth which can further raise their entrepreneurial intentions.

Originality/value: This is an original paper which contributes in the knowledge base related to the entrepreneurship, entrepreneurial competencies and entrepreneurial intentions.


Entrepreneurship, Entrepreneurial Competencies, Entrepreneurial Intentions, Gender


Entrepreneurship, is a business activity which traverse latest and innovative ways to harness resources (Klofsten & Jones-Evans, 2000) and plays a crucial role in the generation of jobs and reduction of unemployment. As a career entrepreneurship brings self-sufficiency, social empowerment among individuals and also leads to the economic growth of a country especially of the developing ones (Ahmed, 2010). According to Centre for Monitoring Indian Economy (CMIE), India's current unemployment rate till June 2021, stands at 10.07 per cent. Also, as per another report published for 2019, submitted by ‘Statistical Research Department’, in India, 6.47 millions of students graduated every year but only 29 per cent graduates got an opportunity to work in an organized sector in financial year 2020. In the overall unemployment rate of the India, the contribution of graduated (graduates and post graduates) unemployed people is 30.5 percent. This is not a good sign for a developing economy like India and the situation became worse owning to the prevailing COVID-19 pandemic. One reason behind this high unemployment rate among the graduates is their inclination towards the government job and very less intentions to start their own venture and become entrepreneur. Government recognize the relevence of entrepreneurship in the growth of an economy and therefore, emphasizes on “Atamnirbhar Bharat” which motivates youth to become the job providers not the job seeker. Also, government initiated various policies and programs to facilitate the budding entrepreneurs, like under The Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana government allocated Rs. 1.2 billion over the last four years for short-term courses of 150 to 300 hours for skilling the youth and making them employable. Eradication of the unemployment is the need of the hour and for this the transition from the traditional culture of wage employment to contemporary culture of self-employment is required (Oosterbeek et al., 2010).

Morris et al. (2017) emphasised that entrepreneurship can be a very apt career choice for the university students, it not only gives personal independence to the individual but also allow them to convert their ideas into reality. Therefore, it is the responsibility of the university stakeholders that they consider entrepreneurship seriously in their course curriculum (Rauch & Hulsink, 2015). A question arises that how to brace entrepreneurial activity in the youth of the society. The answer is through inculcating and nurturing entrepreneurial competencies and entrepreneurial intentions among the youth at their school and college level. Because the education given by the educational institution have an impact on the career choice of a student (Bergmann et al., 2016; Ramos-Rodr?guez et al., 2019; Thurik et al., 2008). From entrepreneurship perspective, college students are very important because they have the knowledge, education, motivation, confidence, proactiveness, creativity, and ability which facilitate them to start their own business and helps them during their entrepreneurial journey. Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development and European Union OECD/EU (2017) data shows that most young people in European countries stated that the reason why they are not engaged in entrepreneurship immediately after graduation is that they do not have enough knowledge and competence in order to start their own business. Education and training related to entrepreneurship can help students to acquire those competencies which are supposed to be necessary in the process of entrepreneurship and this can also increase entrepreneurial intensions among the students (Schøtt et al., 2015).

Entrepreneurial competencies are very important in the development of a venture (Mitchelmore & Rowley, 2010). Bird (1995), defined entrepreneurial competencies as “underlying characteristics such as specific knowledge, motives, traits, self-images, social roles, and skills, which result in a venture’s birth, survival and growth”. Kautonen et al. (2013) defined entrepreneurial intentions as a cognitive state that instantly leads the decision to act, and they lie the base of the entrepreneurial process because to their cognitive and motivational nature (Kautonen et al., 2013). Entrepreneurial intentions acts as a strongest antecedent of entrepreneurial behaviour. Even the starting point of entrepreneurial activity is the entrepreneurial intention, which is shaped through competencies of an individual and associated interaction with the environment especially the educational environment provided by the universities in the case of students.

Presently, the Government of India is focusing on the development of entrepreneurial culture among the youth of the country. Therefore, it has become more important to unfurl the importance of entrepreneurial competencies and how they affect entrepreneurial intention of the students. It is a well-established and recognized that for the progress of a developing economy entrepreneurship is must and universities and colleges are the potential source of entrepreneurs. But, very little attention has been paid on the development of competencies and intentions among the college students. Also little efforts has been made to understand the factors which can influence the entrepreneurial intentions of the students to start a venture. Understanding such aspects of entrepreneurship may help the government, policy makers and stakeholders of educational institutions to formulate and develop well-planned strategies and policies which facilitates youngsters of India to choose entrepreneurship as a career choice. Accordingly, this study aimed to determine the (a) Relationship between entrepreneurial competencies and entrepreneurial intention among management students. Further, this study also sought (b) to examine the role played by gender on Entrepreneurial competencies and on entrepreneurial intentions separately.

Unemployment of Youth: Major Challenge of Himachal Pradesh

As per the data released by Govt. of India, Census 2011, the total population of Himachal Pradesh is approximately 6.8 million. The literacy rate of Himachal Pradesh till Dec 2020 is 86.6 per cent, secured 4th rank among all the states of India. But unfortunately, according to the data which is released by Centre for Monitoring Indian Economy (CMIE), the unemployment rate of Himachal Pradesh is 20.2 per cent till December 2019 which is third highest among Indian states. According to Himachal Pradesh, Department of Labor & Employment, 2020, a total of 8.49 million unemployed individuals registered with the employment exchanges till 31st March 2020 included 76,241 post-graduates, 1.36 million graduates, 6 million matriculates, 30,319 under metric and 6,230 illiterates. The number of educated unemployed people are increasing day by day and it has been estimated that in Himachal Pradesh every year more than 60,000 educated youth are becoming a part of the queue who are seeking jobs contrary to that creation of jobs is quite low. “As per the government data from January 2018 to July 2019, as many as 1.46 million jobs were generated—6,637 in the government sector and 1.4 million in the private sector” (Hindustan Times, 2020). These statistics exhibits a very drab situation in front of the government and policy makers because for the upliftment of an economy and of a society, employment of the youth is very important. Hence, to tackle this challenge of unemployment among the youth, it becomes important that youngsters should be expose to the idea of entrepreneurship which creates avenue of jobs. It is mentioned in Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM) report and European Commission (2016) observed that the education provide by the educational institutions does not equip the necessary competencies and skills among students which are required to become job creator (Bosma et al., 2020). Literature has shown that there exists a gap in the skill set which is present among the young people and the skill set which is actually required from the industries perspective required from the industries point of view. It is very much required that our educational institutions should work in this direction and develop their entrepreneurial culture and curriculum in such a way which is industry oriented. It is only through the entrepreneurial activities that unemployment of literate youth can be eradicated and it will help in the stability of the economy. Entrepreneurship is also one of the key competencies for lifelong learning, along with personal initiative (Bacigalupo et al., 2016).

Himachal Pradesh is doing very well in the education sector as a result of that in terms of literacy rate the State is among the top states. However, more attention is required to be paid on skill-based education system that encourages entrepreneurship among the youngsters to overcome the challenge of unemployment among the literate youths. There are no graduate or post-graduate courses in the Colleges/Universities in Himachal Pradesh that offer entrepreneurship as a full-fledged course. Though, there are good number of educational institutions in the State which provide management education to the students, who are well-equipped with the management concepts and skills. They can be future intrapreneurs who require the same competencies as that of an entrepreneur to a greater extent. These intrapreneurs can become entrepreneurs if given appropriate entrepreneurial eco-system for the same. Hence, management students are more likely to become future entrepreneurs. Therefore, this research is conducted to understand the entrepreneurial competencies and entrepreneurial intensions among the management students of Himachal Pradesh.

Theoretical Approaches

In the present study majorly the focus is on two aspects on entrepreneurship one is entrepreneurial competencies and the other one is entrepreneurial intentions. To understand them more, these variables has been analysed from the lenses of two theories which are competency theory and theory of planned behaviour. Mitchelmore & Rowley (2010) stated that the competency theory is basically an in-depth study of behaviours, characteristics, attitudes and skills of successful leaders in measurable form. Under competency theory different set of such characteristics has been made which can help an individual to achieve the superior performance in entrepreneurial activities. The interest in competency approach has been developed because of its close association with the performance of an individual. Earlier the focus of the researchers was majorly on the personality traits of the entrepreneurs but after the research of Boyatzis (1982) on American managers and their competencies (Man et al., 2002) attention was shifted towards competencies. McClelland (1973) on putting emphasis on the need of competencies stated that the success or failure of an individual depends upon their competencies not on the formal education on which a lot of attention has been paid. Even education is a very important medium through which competencies can be taught to the individual. To source of entrepreneurial intentions is Ajzen’s (1988, 1991) Theory of Planned Behaviour. According to this theory “entrepreneurial intention is influenced by attitudes, perceived behavioural control, and subjective norms”. From the planned behaviour theory, it has been identified that intentions are the major factors which influence the behaviour of an entrepreneur. Behavioural intention is a necessary contributor to behavioural performance and a prerequisite for behavior (Ding and Liu, 2009).

Literature Review and Research Hypotheses

Entrepreneurial Competencies

Several scholars, such as (Man et al., 2002); Baum (1994); Ahmad et al. (2010), had identified entrepreneurial competencies namely, recognition of opportunities, Human relationship building, strategic, commitment, conceptual and operational, innovation, learning and personal strength competencies which are essential for the superior performance of an enterprises. Baum (1994) conducted a study to identify the strongest competencies which should be existed in an entrepreneur to grow an enterprise which is in its nascent stage, and the identified competencies are self-efficacy, Marketing, technical, personal, innovative skills along with commitment towards work. Bird (2019) stated that competencies directly or indirectly leads to the entrepreneurial behaviour and can be taught and observable. Therefore the effect of education, work experience and entrepreneurial experience can easily influence Competencies of the individuals. Although, the definition of competencies varies from one research to another, but in significant number of studies, competencies are expressed, as a group of related knowledge, traits, attitudes and skills which majorly have an effect on individuals and enterprises performance and to measure these there exists well-accepted criteria. Researchers (Parry, 1998; Morris & Kaplan, 2013) also emphasised that via training and practise competencies can be developed.

Entrepreneurial Intentions

According to Choo & Wong (2009), entrepreneurial intentions is the starting point of an entrepreneurial activity because it originates personal commitment which have major impact on the creation of new venture. Thompson (2009), defined entrepreneurial intentions as “self-acknowledged conviction by a person that they intend to set up a new business venture and consciously plan to do so at some point in the future”. Understanding of entrepreneurial intentions helps the scholars in exploring the various other dimensions which are useful in venture creation process. Ajzen’s (1992), Theory of Planned Behaviour gives a base to predict intentions of an individual related to the choice of profession. Katz (1992) defined intentions as “the vocational decision process in terms of the individual’s decision to enter an occupation as a salaried individual or as self- employed.” In this sense, intention is “a conscious state of mind that directs attention and therefore experience and action toward a specific objective or pathway to achieve it”

Entrepreneurial Competencies and Entrepreneurial Intentions

Researchers agreed that entrepreneurial intentions of an individual are the major antecedent of their entrepreneurial behaviour. Therefore, it becomes rational to find out the predictors which have an influence on the entrepreneurial intentions of the individuals. Numbers of researchers (Al Mamun et al. 2016; Farrukh et al., 2017) revealed that personality traits and competencies are the major predictors of entrepreneurial intention. Initially the main focus of the researchers was on the personality traits of the individuals but now researchers putting more emphasis on the entrepreneurial competencies of the individual because they can be observed and taught. Conducted a quasi-experimental research on 837 students of a university in Solvenia with the aim to examine the impact of entrepreneurship education on entrepreneurial intentions and entrepreneurial competencies. Findings of the study indicated that students who are involved in entrepreneurship education possess higher entrepreneurial intentions and entrepreneurial competencies as compared to those, who are not exposed to the entrepreneurial education. Also, it has been statistically proven that theory of planned behavior and entrepreneurial competencies are related to each other and entrepreneurial competencies partly influence entrepreneurial intentions of the students. To know more about the relationship between entrepreneurial competencies and entrepreneurial intentions, a study has been conducted by Reyes, G. (2018) on non-business students. The results of the study concluded that out of ten, eight entrepreneurial competencies have a significant relationship with entrepreneurial intentions of the non-business students. Botha & Taljaard (2019) undertook a study on the entrepreneurs of South Africa and the outcomes concluded that there exists a bidirectional relationship between entrepreneurial competencies and entrepreneurial intentions of the entrepreneurs which leads to the effective performance of an enterprise. Conducted a research on the engineering students of India to examine their entrepreneurial competencies and their association with the self-employment intentions. They further mapped the entrepreneurial competencies index and self-employment intentions index and it has been found that those who scores high on these indexes can be the potential entrepreneurs. Findings of the study also stated that self-employment intentions of the students did not significant relationship with their entrepreneurial competencies. Conducted a study on 496 German scientists to gauge the influence of entrepreneurial competencies on adults’ entrepreneurial intentions. Structural equation Modelling has been used by them to analyse the effects of entrepreneurial competencies including entrepreneurial personality, control beliefs on entrepreneurial intentions. The outcomes of the study revealed that both entrepreneurial personality and early entrepreneurial competence directly and indirectly through control belief system predicted entrepreneurial intentions of adults. It has been also found that intention of an individual to start entrepreneurial journey also get affected by certain entrepreneurial characteristics (knowledge, traits and skills). Some researchers organized these entrepreneurial characteristics into key competency areas (Man et al., 2002).

Significant number of studies (Man et al., 2002; Mamun et al., 2018; Man et al., 2008; Kanniainen & Poutvaara, 2007; Zainol & Al-Mamun, 2018; Kanniainen & Poutvaara, 2007) has been conducted to identify the key entrepreneurial competencies which have an impact on the entrepreneurial activities. Majorly identified competencies are strategic, conceptual, opportunity recognizing, relationship, commitment and organizing competencies which have an impact on the intentions and performance of the enterprises. So, for the present study an attempt has been made to understand the relationship between various entrepreneurial competencies (strategic, conceptual, opportunity recognition, relationship, commitment, organizing) and the entrepreneurial intentions of the management students. Therefore following hypotheses has been developed.

H1: There is a significant positive relationship between various entrepreneurial competencies and entrepreneurial intentions of management students.

H1a: There is a significant positive relationship between strategic competency and entrepreneurial intentions of management students.

H1b: There is a significant positive relationship between conceptual competency and entrepreneurial intentions of management students.

H1c: There is a significant positive relationship between opportunity competency and entrepreneurial intentions of management students.

H1d: There is a significant positive relationship between relationship competency and entrepreneurial intentions of management students.

H1e: There is a significant positive relationship between commitment competency and entrepreneurial intentions of management students.

H1f: There is a significant positive relationship between organizing competency and entrepreneurial intentions of management students.

Gender and Entrepreneurial competencies

Hungu (2007) defined gender in terms of difference in roles and behavior. Gender is also interpreted as the biological differences which distinguish man from woman and on those basis perceptions of the society has been developed towards the individual. Also, on these perceptions professions has also been divided among man and woman. Earlier entrepreneurship has also been acknowledged as man dominated profession. Various studies have been conducted to study the impact of gender in general or particular in context of entrepreneurship. Dash et al. (2016) conducted a research to compare the entrepreneurial competencies of young men and women in India. Results of the study indicated that both men and women are at par with each other in terms of their entrepreneurial competencies. Women are good in use of influence strategies and information seeking where as men are good in efficiency orientation and assertiveness. Th baud (2010) emphasized in their study that in womans’ entrepreneurial journey the lack of competencies is the major hurdle to them as compared to the men. In the same line, Allen et al. (2008) also found lack of competencies as the major challenge for women entrepreneur. This study also indicated that only fewer women entrepreneurs believe themselves and are confident that they have the required skill set to run a business and the rest have self-doubts and sceptical about their competencies and skills regarding entrepreneurship.

From the above discussion it seems valid that research should be done on this aspect and might be there exist differences in the achievement of entrepreneurship competence on the basis of gender. Therefore, hypothesis has been developed as following:

H2: There is a mean difference between man and woman management students’ and their entrepreneurial competencies.

H2a: There is a mean difference between man and woman management students’ and their strategic competencies.

H2b: There is a mean difference between man and woman management students’ and their conceptual competencies.

H2c: There is a mean difference between man and woman management students’ and their opportunity competencies.

H2d: There is a mean difference between man and woman management students’ and their relationship competencies.

H2e: There is a mean difference between man and woman management students’ and their commitment competencies.

H2f: There is a mean difference between man and woman management students’ and their organizing competencies.

Gender and Entrepreneurial Intentions

Number of researchers (Kourilsky & Walstad, 1998; Kristiansen & Indarti, 2004; aughn et al., 2006; Langowitz & Minniti, 2007; de Bruin et al., 2007; Gupta et al., 2009) accepted the fact that there exist differences in terms of entrepreneurial intentions as per the gender of an individual where man possessed stronger entrepreneurial intentions as compared to the womans. Across different culture, the orientation of gender varies in respect of pursuing entrepreneurship as a career (Giacomin et al., 2011). In another cross cultural research conducted by i an et al.’s (2010) on the entrepreneurship students of UK and Spain it has found that woman students’ possessed lower entrepreneurial attraction and intentions compared to their counterpart. Caliendo et al. (2009) also made an attempt to study the gender difference in terms of entrepreneurial intentions in Germany and concluded that men are more than twice as active as entrepreneurs as women. In literature extensive research work has been done to investigate whether gender effect the self- employment intentions of the individual or not and significant number of studies concluded that mans exhibit stronger intentions of self-employment as compared to the womans (Reynolds, 1997; Blanch flower & Meyer, 1994; Lin et al., 2000; Caliendo et al., 2009; Blanchflower et al., 2001). From the above discussion, hypothesis has been developed as:Kourilsky

H3: There is a mean difference between man and woman management students’ and their entrepreneurial intentions.

There have been few studies conducted in developed economies to understand the relationship between entrepreneurial competencies and entrepreneurial intentions of students. But in India, very less amount of attention has been paid to understand this aspect of entrepreneurship among the management students. Several authors ( yndt Baert, 201 ; Sa?nchez, 2011 ,) had drawn attention on the need to do more empirical research, in order to get in depth understanding of the relationship between entrepreneurial competencies and entrepreneurial intentions of the management students. Mitchelmore & Rowley (2010) were convinced that further development of this field is required, both on the theory of entrepreneurial competencies and intentions along with the practical implications. More specifically, in the context of Himachal Pradesh such type of research is very much required because in the state the unemployment rate of educated youth is very high. The results of the study can help university stakeholders to develop their curriculum in such a way in which attention has been paid on the development of entrepreneurial competencies and self- employment intentions among the students. It will also help the government and policy makers to identify specific training needs of the students. So, that shift from job seekers youth to the job creators can became possible.

Research Methodology

Research Design

In the present study, to test the hypotheses and to confirm the relationship among the variables deductive approach has been adopted (Wilson, 2014). Cross-sectional research design has been used in the present research work. The target population consists of management students of Himachal Pradesh and quantitative data have been collected through structured questionnaire. Both man and woman management students have been considered for the study. Two universities of Himachal Pradesh have been undertaken for this study i.e. Central University of Himachal Pradesh, Dharamshala and Himachal Pradesh University, Shimla.

Sampling Method, Selection Criteria and Sample Size

This study made use of non-probability sampling, purposive sampling method was used in this study. The selection criteria for the study is maintained by considering all those students which have enrolled in management program (MBA) of university. The study aimed to attain a target of 200 respondents and hence, 250 questionnaires were distributed through internet survey method. This method of internet survey allows an increase in volume of responses. The usable questionnaires were 223, rest of the questionnaires were not considered because of incomplete response.


The present study is empirical in nature and majorly consist of two variables, one is entrepreneurial competencies (independent variable) and the other variable is entrepreneurial intention (dependent variable) (Figure 1). Various number of studies have measured entrepreneurial competencies and intentions. Hence, standardised research instrument has been used in the present study. Scale to measure the entrepreneurial competencies of the students has been adopted from Man et al. (2008) with minor modifications to ensemble the present research context. Linen & Chen (2009) scale has been adopted to measure entrepreneurial intention. Close ended structured questionnaire on 5-point Likert scale has been used ranged from 1 as ‘strongly disagree’ to 5 as ‘strongly agree’.

Figure 1: Research Framework Developed By The Researcher.

Data Analysis

This study using a quantitative method and partial least square structural equation modelling approach (PLS- SEM). PLS–SEM has been used in this study because it benefits in analyzing the human behavior (Hair et al., 2011; Hair et al., 2012). Also, PLS-SEM does not require normal distribution of data and have exploratory and predictive perspective by using reflective key items (Hair et al., 2014). Partial least square has been used in analyzing the measurement model and structural model.


Descriptive Data

The demographic profile of students has indicated that, maximum respondents fall in the 20-25 age group category (64.6 percent). Very less respondents i.e. 0.9 percent were above 30 years and 34.5 percent of respondents fall in the age category of 25 – 30. From a sample of 223 respondents, 55.6 percent respondents were man and 44.4 percent respondents were woman. On the basis of previous educational background, 42.2 percent students possess science educational background, 33.6 percent commerce and 24.2 percent humanities (Table 1).

Table 1
Demographic Profile Of Respondents
Data Frequency (n=223) Percent (%)
Age 20-25 144 64.6
25-30 77 34.5
30 & above 2 .9
Total 223 100.0
Gender Man 124 55.6
Woman 99 44.4
Total 223 100.0
Previous Educational Background Science 94 42.2
Commerce 75 33.6
Humanities 54 24.2
Total 223 100.0

Confirming the Latent Factors (Assessment of Measurement Model)

As, this study has used Partial least square structural equation modelling (PLS-SEM). First of all, to test hypotheses, latent factors have been confirmed in the measurement model (Yong & Pearce, 2013). Measurement model in this study has been analyzed by evaluating the individual item reliability, Cronbach’s alpha and validity of the relationships between the latent variables and key items. Outer loadings of every construct was greater than 0.7, indicating that observed variables were part of the latent construct (Hair et al., 2011). Composite reliability (CR), rho_A and Cronbach’s alpha (CA) of the observed variables showed all values were above 0.70 (Hair et al., 2014). This shows that the measurement model was consistent. For evaluating the convergent validity of the measurement model, average variance extracted (AVE) was calculated. AVE shows the extent of variance that a latent variable attains from its observed variables in relation to the extent of variance, due to measurement error. All the constructs have shown the AVE greater than 0.50. Hence, the measurement model was showing consistent reliability and convergent validity (Table 2).

Table 2
Assessment Of Measurement Model
Construct Item code Outer Loading CA Rho_A CR AVE
Strategic Competency (SC)     0.803 0.805 0.872 0.63
  A.2 0.773        
  A.4 0.787        
  A.6 0.864        
  A.7 0.746        
Conceptual Competency (CC)     0.715 0.717 0.841 0.638
  B.10 0.817        
  B.15 0.744        
  B.8 0.834        
Opportunity Competency (OC)     0.745 0.755 0.853 0.66
  C.16 0.801        
  C.18 0.791        
  C.19 0.844        
Relationship Competency (RC)     0.798 0.82 0.88 0.709
  D.21 0.855        
  D.24 0.823        
  D.25 0.847        
Commitment Competency (CC1)     0.772 0.774 0.854 0.593
  E.26 0.77        
  E.27 0.767        
  E.28 0.79        
  E.30 0.753        
Organizing Competency (OC1)     0.791 0.806 0.861 0.609
  F.33 0.75        
  F.36 0.816        
  F.37 0.768        
  F.39 0.786        
Entrepreneurial Intention {EIN (Single Item Construct)}       -   - - -
  EIN1    -        

For discriminant validity, Fornell and Larcker (Fornell & Larcker, 1981) criteria for analyzing the discriminant validity was used. These criteria show a thumb rule that AVE’s square root should be higher than the correlation among constructs. It implies that each construct should be different from rest of the constructs. All the constructs in this study possess discriminant validity (Table 3).

Table 3
Discriminant Validity: Criteria Of Fornell-Larcker
CC 0.799            
CC1 0.711 0.77          
EIN 0.302 0.333 1        
OC 0.643 0.576 0.253 0.812      
OC1 0.627 0.746 0.372 0.55 0.78    
RC 0.761 0.757 0.276 0.717 0.681 0.842  
SC 0.746 0.67 0.386 0.579 0.609 0.673 0.794

Assessment of Structural Model

First of all, collinearity issue of structural model has been evaluated by checking the variance inflation factor (VIF) values. All the values of VIF for the constructs used in the study were lower than 3.30 as suggested by various researchers (Hair et al., 2011; Hair et al., 2017). The values of F2 has been calculated to determine the effect size. The values of F2 was greater than 0.02 for the constructs (Hair et al., 2017).

Structural Equation Modelling

For structural equation modelling standard bootstrapping (500 samples) was used with 223 sample observations for the current study to analyse the significance of path coefficients (Hair et al., 2011). This study examined the impact of various entrepreneurial competencies on entrepreneurial intention. Figure 2 shows which competency has a significant impact on entrepreneurial intention of students and which do not show any impact.

Figure 2:Partial Least Square Sem Model.

Strategic competency (β=0.294, t=2.787, p<0.05) and organizing competency (β=0.0233 , t =2.461, p<0.05) showed a significant and positive impact on entrepreneurial intention of management students’. Whereas, conceptual (β=-0.018) and relationship competency (β=-0.018) showed a negative impact on students’ entrepreneurial intention although, not significant. Opportunity competency and commitment competency did not make any significant impact on management students’ entrepreneurial intention. Present study has also analyzed the effect of gender on various competencies and entrepreneurial intention of students. Only two entrepreneurial competencies i.e. opportunity recognition and relationship competency made an impact on man and woman students. Other competencies (strategic, conceptual, commitment and organizing) did not show any impact on man and woman management students (Table 4).

Table 4
Path Coefficients And Hypothesis Testing
Relationships Beta Mean (M) Standard Deviation (STDEV) T Statistics Decision
SC -> EIN 0.294 0.298 0.105 2.787 Supported
CC -> EIN -0.018 -0.016 0.106 0.174 Not Supported
OC -> EIN 0.029 0.03 0.085 0.344 Not Supported
RC -> EIN -0.148 -0.159 0.115 1.284 Not Supported
CC1 -> EIN 0.067 0.075 0.107 0.622 Not Supported
OC1 -> EIN 0.233 0.234 0.095 2.461 Supported
Gender -> SC -0.046 -0.044 0.071 0.655 Not Supported
Gender -> CC -0.132 -0.132 0.07 1.882 Not Supported
Gender -> OC -0.146 -0.147 0.065 2.239 Supported
Gender -> RC -0.174 -0.177 0.066 2.634 Supported
Gender -> CC1 -0.114 -0.118 0.067 1.69 Not Supported
Gender -> OC1 -0.102 -0.104 0.069 1.485 Not Supported
Gender -> EIN -0.032 -0.032 0.065 0.487 Not Supported

Conclusion and Discussion

The present study evaluated the impact of various entrepreneurial competencies on entrepreneurial intention of students. Several competencies have been identified from the literature and their relationship with entrepreneurial intention of management students have been assessed. This study indicated that only strategic competency and organizing competency have an impact on entrepreneurial intention of students. If students possess these competencies, they will have entrepreneurial intention. Other competencies did not possess any significant impact on entrepreneurial intention of students. The other aspect which the current study analyzed was the effect of gender on both the constructs i.e. entrepreneurial competencies and entrepreneurial intention. Regarding entrepreneurial intention, there was no difference in man and woman management students. Whereas, in case of entrepreneurial competencies, only two competencies (opportunity recognition and relationship) possess a significant difference among man and woman management students.

Although, various scholars have worked on entrepreneurial intention (Krueger, 1993; Autio et al., 2001), in this study authors’ have focused on various competencies that can further enhance entrepreneurial intention of students in Himachal Pradesh. As discussed above, unemployment among youth have become a common factor in developing economies. Also, if we talk about India, unemployed youth possessing a major problem in development. Himachal Pradesh, a state of India, having around 90% of rural population have high unemployment rate. This unemployment rate can be reduced to some extent if students have particular competencies that are further needed to develop an entrepreneurial mindset. The human agency theory and social cognitive theory recognized the relationship between entrepreneurial competencies and intentions on a psychological level (Bird 1988; Zhao & Seibert 2006; Krueger, 1993). The competencies (conceptual and relationship) which were showing negative impact on entrepreneurial intention should be built among students.

The contribution of this study is twofold: firstly, it helps in understanding the impact of several entrepreneurial competencies on entrepreneurial intention of students. The findings of the study showed which competencies among students must be focused on to further enhance their intention towards entrepreneurship as a career. By analyzing the entrepreneurial intention with the entrepreneurial competencies, it motivate other scholars to explore new ideas or constructs of evaluating entrepreneurial intention in different scenarios. Secondly, policy–makers and academicians who are interested in encouraging entrepreneurial intent among students must pay attention to the competencies they possess. The competencies have significant relationship (strategic and organizing) with entrepreneurial intention should be inculcated in the start-up training programs. Other competencies should also be paid attention, so that it can further help them in growth phase of entrepreneurial life cycle. Academics, policy-makers and educators can use these findings and can ensure that various competencies must be taught and developed among students. So, that students’ entrepreneurial intention enhances with respect to their competencies.


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Received: 05-Dec-2022, Manuscript No. AEJ-22-12482; Editor assigned: 07-Dec-2022, PreQC No. AEJ-22-12482(PQ); Reviewed: 19- Dec-2022, QC No. AEJ-22-12482; Revised: 26-Dec-2022, Manuscript No. AEJ-22-12482(R); Published: 28-Dec-2022

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