Date on Master's Thesis/Doctoral Dissertation


Document Type

Doctoral Dissertation

Degree Name

Ph. D.



Degree Program

Entrepreneurship, PhD

Committee Chair

Garrett, Robert

Committee Co-Chair (if applicable)

Quinn, Ryan

Committee Member

Quinn, Ryan

Committee Member

Barone, Michael

Committee Member

Shepherd, Dean

Author's Keywords

rejection; self-efficacy; resilience; self-esteem; learning from failure; exit intention


Rejected by the investor is a common challenge that entrepreneurs face in the startup process. This study investigates how entrepreneurs respond to investor rejection. The results indicate the rejection can motivate entrepreneurs to learn from the rejection and improve venture image. Meanwhile, investor rejection can also increase entrepreneurs’ tendency of withdrawal from the investor and exit intention. Rejected by investor also increase entrepreneurs’ doubts about the investors’ competency. This study finds both the alternative funding source and the fairness of the rejection can impact entrepreneurs’ rejection responses. Also, the individual difference influences how entrepreneurs deal with investors’ rejection. The empirical evidence also indicates even given the same level of alternative funding source and fairness; entrepreneurs react to rejection differently based on self-efficacy, self-esteem, and resilience. This study offers some preliminary evidence on the mechanism of entrepreneurs’ rejection responses, which I hope to contribute to further conversation and research on the study of investor rejection.

Included in

Business Commons