TEL  Vol.9 No.2 , February 2019
Analysis of Determinants of Entrepreneurial Intentions among Construction Workers
ABSTRACT

The Ajzen’s [1] Theory of Planned Behaviour was applied to study the entrepreneurial intentions of the construction workers. The effects of the TPB variables, gender and age on the EI were examined using the statistical tool of multiple linear regression and analysis of variance. The results have indicated that all the three TPB variables such as Attitude towards entrepreneurship, Subjective Norm and Perceived Behaviour Control had significant affect and were the strongest predictors to become entrepreneur. It was evident that females have shown lesser attitude and perceived behavior control than males to become entrepreneurs. Among the respondents, people of 40 and above age have shown inclination to become entrepreneurs. There is a need for the governments to recognize the unorganized construction sector and provide some basic education in strengthening their entrepreneurial skills and enhance their confidence to become better entrepreneurs.


1. Introduction

Entrepreneurship serves as a vital element for any country’s economy. Because of its contribution in strengthening the socio-economic fabric of the country and the thrust it provides to economic growth and development, entrepreneurship indeed has become national agenda. A term that describes the struggles of an individual who invests all efforts to build a business of his/her own which in turn reflects and extends value addition for the growth of the country, is called “Entrepreneurship”. Entrepreneurs bring change to the lives of people; they create job opportunities for larger public and in line impact societies. They bring in the improved products, innovation, and technology development and with the growth of entrepreneurs and their wealth, they directly contribute to the economy of the country.

Entrepreneurial Intention can be defined as the desire or instinct to start a business which will stand out as one of the major success determinants. Entrepreneurs are highly motivated individuals who can take risk to achieve their goals in the business.

Construction Industry is the primary source of employment in urban areas and features as the second largest next to agriculture in India. Building activity (both constructing new ones and maintenance of old buildings) are labour-intensive, thus generating several employment opportunities.

A plethora of investment opportunities in several other allied sectors are created by the construction industry as it is one of the important drivers for the economic development of India. These construction activities are undertaken by few reputed builders who in turn sub-contract it to the smaller contractors to carry out the activities in the field. The Construction Industry in India is comprised of more than 200 firms at the corporate level. Thousands of small contractors who are competing for small jobs or working as sub contractors to the larger players in the construction industry.

Construction Workers Hailing from Villages of Andhra Pradesh & Telangana States in India

Several families of poor landless and marginal farmers who cannot find work locally or cultivate anything on their land have migrated from villages to urban areas, particularly to Hyderabad, in the state of Telangana in India which by far is the most common destination to which they land up for construction work. Most of them leave their village around November and return in June to look after their land. But then again, as droughts have become quite a common and prolonged phenomena in these areas, some families are leaving their lands fallow and are more or less permanently away, coming back only to celebrate festivals. Some of them take their families along.

It is a common practice across the villages of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana, that the established contractors go to individual households and approach the family heads for hiring boys/girls from the age group of 20 and above to work at Hyderabad. The contract is negotiated for one year with a lumpsum amount and at the end of the year the amount is paid to the household head.

The construction workers stay in tents portioned with tarpaulin sheet in the cellar or basement of the building or if there is vacant plot next to the construction site with little ventilation. Each tent will accommodate about 5 to 6 workers. There will be one temporary toilet and space for washing will be provided. One of the problems faced by the female workers is lack of privacy. Safety will be another issue for these workers as the tents are open and no doors with proper locking is available. These unorganized construction sector, the contractors do not adhere to the minimum safety standards, as a result there are often accidents taking place at the construction site.

Some of the construction workers that contractors hire from the villages, over a period of time acquire and develop entrepreneurial skills. After working for few years, they build up contacts and initiate the business on their own. The people with entrepreneurial acumen and required skills have the ability to foresee and evaluate the opportunities for business, to collect the essential resources, to take advantage and capitalize on these resources and to initiate action plan for laying the success. The Masons today, who have started their career as helpers/assistants, have taken financial risk of commencing their own activity for the purpose of making better earnings and improving in their living conditions, along with generating employment.

The uniqueness of this study is to understand the entrepreneurial intentions of the construction workers. Lot of research has been done on the entrepreneurial intentions of students in the universities but there was no research on the construction workers. The theoretical contributions of the study is on the applicability of Ajzen’s [1] model of TPB in explaining the influence of TPB constructs on the entrepreneurial intentions.

2. Review of Literature

2.1. Entrepreneurial Intentions

Entrepreneurial Intentions are defined as the instinct and willingness or desire to become an entrepreneur. In order to predict the entrepreneurial behaviour, several variables have been defined by researchers [2] .

Garzón [3] opines that person’s entrepreneurial competence will play a determinant role in the primary stages of starting the business. McClelland [4] stated that the entrepreneurial intentions in the adults can be predicted by the competence in the early childhood. Several scholars have studied the individual’s entrepreneurial competences and the impact on intentions through a range of different perspectives [5] [6] .

Man [7] classified that entrepreneurial competences are built within by which the entrepreneurs succeed in developing entrepreneurial activities, which Man [7] categories as relationship competencies, opportunity competencies, conceptual competencies, strategic competencies, organizing competencies and commitment competencies. Although lot of research work done on the entrepreneurial competencies, no researcher discusses the relationship between the entrepreneurial competences and intentions.

2.2. Theory of Planned Behaviour

2.2.1. Conceptual Framework

Researchers during 1980-1990s found out the role of the individual intentions for entrepreneurship. However, there existed a disagreement among the researchers in comparison to several personality and other variables. Ajzen [8] conceptualized a model and emphasized the role of persons’ intentions in determining entrepreneurial intentions. It was a crucial period when lot of research has been done using different models for determining the important factors influencing the entrepreneurial intentions [9] [10] [11] . However, two models Ajzen theory of planned behavior and Shapero model of entrepreneurial event have become very popular and proved efficient [12] .

The Azjen theory focuses on the individual’s attributes and emphasized that it constitute important influencing factors for their entrepreneurial intentions while the Shapero model stressed on the role of the social and cultural attributes [13] . Volumes of research have been done by the researchers who have applied the theory of Ajzen to identify the entrepreneurial intentions of students [10] [13] [14] . Ajzen opines that there are three important variables that have great significant impact on entrepreneurial intentions such as Attitude, Subjective Norm and Perceived Behaviour Control [10] [13] [14] .

2.2.2. Personal Attitude

Personal Attitude is one of the constructs of Ajzen theory and assumes that every individual has a characteristic which may be positive or negative to become an entrepreneur [1] . Linan [14] conducted a survey or study on students in Spain and his study revealed that personality influenced the students behavior to a possible extent which was seconded by Ahmed et al. [13] where he did the study on the students in Pakistan and concluded in his research that personal attitude is an important factor primarily based on innovativeness.

2.2.3. Subjective Norm

Subject Norm is the second construct of Ajzen theory and depicts whether the individual can take the social pressure, whether it could be from family, friends, relatives etc. to start a business or not. Malebana [10] revealed that students considered entrepreneurship as one of the best options for their career mainly because of the fact that their family or friends would support for starting any new venture.

2.2.4. Perceived Behaviour Control

Ajzen [1] opines that Perceived Behaviour Control is the perception of how an individual perceive starting a business. Linan [14] in his research calls for attention to Perceived Behaviour Control as the main key determinant for predicting the entrepreneurial intentions. Peng et al. [9] supported the concept that person’s individual perception is very important and is the basis of his/her behavior.

As per the literature reviewed, it is evident that attitude, subjective norm and perceived behavior control plays a role in determining the intention of starting a new business.

Source: Swathi et al., 2015 [15] .

The characteristics that an entrepreneur should have is self confidence, determination, knowledge of the task, task oriented, persistence, perseverance, hard work, energy, risk taking ability and some leadership behavior.

Every individuals may not have all the above characteristics. However, the more number of traits they have more chances of turning into entrepreneurs. These characteristics are interlinked, for example, the people who are self confident, will take responsibility for their decisions, they will be willing to take more risk and become entrepreneurs. These characteristics when they get enhanced in them, will turn them into good leaders.

3. Objective of Research

The research work is carried out to understand the entrepreneurial intentions of the construction workers through the Ajzen’s [1] Theory of Planned Behaviour. As the main objective of the study is to understand the entrepreneurial intentions, the study hypothesizes that there is a significant influence of the TPB variables (Attitude, Subject Norm and Perceived Behaviour Control) and Gender on the Entrepreneurial Intentions.

Based on the literature and objectives of the research study, the hypotheses proposed for testing are given in Table 1.

3.1. Questionnaire & Data Collection

The questionnaire was developed using the components of TPB. It consisted of 16 statements covering four constructs namely Attitude, Subjective Norm, Perceived Behaviour Control and Entrepreneurial Intentions. Each of the construct has four statements. These statements were in addition to the socio-demographic characteristic information such as gender, educational status, occupation, marital status etc. These statements were measured on a five point Likert scale with 1 = Strongly Disagree to 5 = Strongly Agree.

Data was collected from 162 respondents in Hyderabad through interview and sampling technique used was a random sampling. Majority of the respondents belonged to the districts of Srikakulam and Prakasam of Andhra Pradesh State;

Table 1. Hypotheses for testing.

Mahabubnagar, Nalgonda and Nizambad of Telangana States in India. These districts were predominantly backward districts with very little resources for agriculture and employment. Several families belonging to these districts have migrated to the city of Hyderabad, capital of Telangana state. They are working in the unorganized sector of construction. The demographic profile of the respondents is presented in Table 2.

Out of 162 respondents, 70% were males and 30% were females; 44% of the respondents had only primary school education while 27% of them had higher secondary school education. 50% were labourers before moving to Hyderabad for construction work and 38% were masons. Only 11% were depending on the agriculture, 28% respondents were in the age group of 21 - 25 and 27% were in the age group of 31 - 35 years.

3.2. Results and Discussion

SPSS version 21 was used for data analysis. Data considered for analysis was primary data collected from face to face interview with the Construction Workers. Multiple Linear Regression Analysis was carried out to examine the impact of TPB variables (Attitude, Subjective Norm and Perceived Behaviour Control) on the Entrepreneurial Intentions. The reliability test was conducted to check the validity of the questionnaire. The Cronbach alpha of 0.826 indicates that the questionnaire is reliable.

The Pearson Correlation Coefficient was calculated to understand the relationship and relevance of variables with each other.

Attitude (A), Subjective Norm (SN), Perceived Behaviour Control (PBC) are the Theory of Planned Behaviour Variables.

It is evident from Table 3 that there is a significant positive correlation among all three constructions of Theory of Planned Behaviour viz., Attitude, Subject Norm and Perceived Behaviour Control. The results have supported the hypothesis H1, H2, H3.

The multiple linear regression model with all three predictors produced R2 = 0.572, F (3, 158) = 70.27, p < 0.001. The results indicate that EI are positively associated with Attitude towards entrepreneurship (β = 0.247); Subject Norm (β = 0.320) and Perceived Behaviour Control (β = 0.333). These results have

Table 2. Demographic profile of respondents.

Table 3. Mean, standard deviation and correlation of TPB variables.

**. Correlation is significant at the 0.01 level; Values in Diagonal are the Cronbach Alpha Reliability; off-diagonal are the correlation among the TPB constructs.

supported the hypothesis H4 that all three constructions of TPB have positive relation with the entrepreneurial intentions (Table 4).

These results are in agreement with Ajzen’s opinion that there are three important variables that have great significant impact on entrepreneurial intentions such as attitude, subject norm and perceived behavior control [10] [13] [14] . However, results did not support the statement of Linan [14] that subject norms do not play any role and it is the weakest role hence should not be considered as explanatory variables in determining the entrepreneurial intentions.

4. Gender Variance towards TPB Variables

Analysis of Variance was used to study the differences in Gender among respondent’s intentions for entrepreneurship. It can be seen from Table 5 that

Table 4. Results of multiple linear regression analysis of TPB variables vs entrepreneurial intentions.

Table 5. Effect of GENDER on TPB variables.

F-value pertaining to gender is statistically significant (p = 0.000) for all the TPB variables which indicates that there is difference between males and females.

The descriptive statistics for the Gender on the TPB variables from Table 6 indicates that males have high positive attitude towards entrepreneurship (supported hypothesis H5); female did not show positive attitude; they were not supported or encouraged by their family or friends (H6 = females are more influenced by Subjective Norm than males was rejected) and don’t possess behavior towards entrepreneurship (H7 = Females have less entrepreneurial intentions than males was supported). Hypothesis H8 was supported that males have significant and high PBC than females. It may be concluded that females understand the relevance and importance of being entrepreneur, but they lack the initiative and intention to go and start business. Females perceive that setting up a business entity is difficult and they lack the entrepreneurial skills. It may not be the reason in case of the current study pertaining to Construction Industry and workers. In the construction industry, majority of the male members will take initiative to become entrepreneurs.

5. Age Variance towards TPB Variables

Results from the Table 7 indicate that significant differences exist between different age groups (p = 0.000) towards TPB Variables.

Table 6. Gender response to TPB variables-means.

Table 7. Effect of AGE on TPB variables.

Descriptive statistics from Table 8 reveals that the mean of all the TPB variables increase with the increase of age which indicates that attitude and behavior will change with the age towards starting own business. From the results, it is evident that people in the group of 40 years and above have higher attitude, higher PCB as compared to the younger ones.

6. Conclusions

Ajzen’s model of Theory of Planned Behaviour has been found very useful in explaining the Entrepreneurial Intentions among the construction workers. The model explained 57% of the variance in the Entrepreneurial Intention with TPB variables Attitude, Subject Norm and Perceived Behaviour Control as independent variables. But this emerges contrary to the earlier research studies like Krueger et al. [12] , wherein the TPB variables have explained 35% of the variances. The results indicated that all the TPB variables were valid predictors and had effect on the entrepreneurial intentions as against the findings of the Michael et al. [16] ; Zampetakis et al. [17] ; Robledo et al. [18] ; and Tadesse [19] ; where it was reported that only attitude and PBC were the main factors that had significant influence on the Entrepreneurial Intentions.

The study has substantially highlighted that gender has major impact on the Entrepreneurial Intentions. The results have highlighted that males have shown significantly high attitude and perceived behavior control than females. This result is in confirmation with the findings of Wilson et al. [20] who has shown that significantly lower score exists for females on Entrepreneurial Intentions and

Table 8. Age response to TPB variables-means.

feelings of internal control [21] . Females were not supported or encouraged by their families towards entrepreneurship. It implies that in this unorganized construction sector, females do not come forward to take the risk of setting up a business as it involves lot of movement and networking.

The study also revealed that the age of the workers has significant impact on the Entrepreneurial Intentions. It is interesting to observe that the attitude and perceived behavior control increases with the increase in age. The people in the age group of 40 and above have shown significantly high attitude and perceived behavior control than the relatively younger ones. This behavior towards setting up their own business may be attributed to reason that while working under a contractor for reasonable number of years, they must have gained due experience and acquired the essential entrepreneurial skills. At this age, actuated by their networking abilities and experience, they must have developed contacts in housing and construction sector.

This research has some policy implications. The government should consider the unorganized construction sector and form a regulatory body for monitoring the activities, the security, socio-economic conditions, living conditions, insurance and the well being of the construction workers. Albeit, it would be out of context to pronounce that some of these construction workers though did not have formal or great education, but are capable of constructing houses without any technical support of engineers. These workers are required to be imparted some entrepreneurial skills training which would develop confidence and help them become better entrepreneurs. Government is working in this direction and to foster a culture of innovation and promote entrepreneurship in the country, a wide range of initiatives have been implemented by the government. Amongst the significant ones of India’s efforts at promoting entrepreneurship and innovation are Startup India, Make-in India, Support to Training and Training and Employment Program for Women (STEP), Stand-UP India, Digital India and National Skills Development etc. The future is anticipated to witness favourable environment and growing opportunities for promoting and sustaining entrepreneurship and consequential economic growth.

Cite this paper
Reddy, R. , Vinay, M. and Venkateswarlu, P. (2019) Analysis of Determinants of Entrepreneurial Intentions among Construction Workers. Theoretical Economics Letters, 9, 296-307. doi: 10.4236/tel.2019.92022.
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