A Research Perspective
Edited by Candida G. Brush, Anne de Bruin, Elizabeth J. Gatewood and Colette Henry
Chapter 16: Mentoring Women Entrepreneurs in the Russian Emerging Market
Jill Kickul, Mark D. Griffiths, Lisa K. Gundry and Tatiana Iakovleva INTRODUCTION The presence of women leading small and entrepreneurial organizations has had a tremendous impact on employment and global business environments (Diana Project, 2005; Minniti et al., 2005). The size and growth of this phenomenon has attracted considerable attention from academics, practitioners and policymakers. Many studies identifying the success factors of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) have been carried out in advanced countries (Anna et al., 2000; Chaganti and Parasuraman, 1997; Lerner and Almor, 2002). Economic research on entrepreneurship in transitioning economies is less developed with respect to the use of rigorous scientific approaches (Tkachev and Kolvereid, 1999). In emerging economies, the expanding network of entrepreneurial firms is at the forefront of economic development (Neace, 1999), and factors that influence the growth of these enterprises are of particular research interest. In particular, how do entrepreneurs in emerging markets obtain the knowledge and information needed to enhance business development and success? How exactly does the growing network of enterprises described by Neace (1999) help entrepreneurs? For example, does it provide the opportunity for social learning? The study presented in this chapter focuses on a large group of Russian women entrepreneurs and the role mentoring plays in facilitating entrepreneurial self-efficacy, decision-making, and firm performance. Research has shown that entrepreneurial learning is crucial to the survival and growth of entrepreneurial businesses and, as Sullivan (2000) argues, mentors provide value-added interventions that contribute to the long-term success of these businesses. Mentors may provide...
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