Nearly 90 percent of Americans express positive attitudes about entrepreneurship for reasons such as independence and self-fulfillment, up 24 percent when compared to 2014, says a global report released today by Ada-based Amway, a direct selling company.
"The attitude toward entrepreneurship is not only remarkably high but significantly increased from last year when fewer than two-thirds of respondents reported a positive attitude," says David Audretsch, professor and director of the Institute for Development Strategies at the Indiana University School of Public and Environmental Affairs. "What's more, the secondary importance of financial compensation contradicts the most prevalent stereotypes and myths about why people choose entrepreneurship."
The 2015 Amway Global Entrepreneurship Report surveyed nearly 50,000 people across 44 countries.
The report found globally, those under age 50 and university graduates were most likely to have positive attitudes about entrepreneurship. The most appealing aspects for owning a business to Americans were having independence from an employer, the possibility to realize their own ideas, and self-fulfillment.
More than 50 percent of Americans say they can imagine starting a business, up 7 percent when compared to 2014. More than 60 percent of men were likely to seek entrepreneurship, compared with about 40 percent of women, a gap that widened by three times when compared to last year. Education had virtually no effect on entrepreneurial potential.
Six in 10 Americans say the fear of failure is a major hurdle to business ownership. American men and women were nearly equally fearful, which matched international results. Despite fears, the majority of Americans view the United States as entrepreneurship-friendly.
"The (report) pinpoints the United States as sustaining a highly hospitable environment for entrepreneurs," Audretsch says. "More than two-thirds consider the United States to constitute an environmentally friendly society — considerably greater than how most other countries are perceived by their own residents."