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The skill balancing act: when does broad expertise pay off?

Elisabeth Bublitz () and Florian Noseleit ()

Small Business Economics, 2014, vol. 42, issue 1, 17-32

Abstract: We compare skill sets of employees working in businesses of different size to the skill sets of entrepreneurs. Employees in large businesses tend to have a lower skill balance than those working in small businesses; yet, the skill balance of entrepreneurs remains the largest. Our evidence suggests that the skill level and skill scope matter for balance and increase with formal education levels but decrease with the number of previous occupations. We find a positive relationship between skill balance and income that is strongest for entrepreneurs. For employees, the relationship remains positive but the magnitude of the association decreases when business size increases. Copyright Springer Science+Business Media New York 2014

Keywords: Entrepreneurship; Balanced skills; Firm size; Division of labor; L22; L26; J24; J31; M13 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2014
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DOI: 10.1007/s11187-013-9474-z

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