Social Competence of Women Entrepreneurs: Moderating the Effect of Social-, Human-, and Reputational Capital on Entrepreneurial Success.

Document Type



Published by Babson College in Frontiers of Entrepreneurship Research, 2009, chapter VIII. Bryant users may access this article here.


Babson College

Publication Source

Frontiers of Entrepreneurship Research


Women entrepreneurs and the business(es) they own face many challenges. However relatively little research has addressed the performance correlates of these women and their businesses (Lerner & Almor, 2002; Jiang & Zimmerman Treichel, 2008). In this paper we use the resource based view (RBV) to address performance correlates of women entrepreneurs and their business(es). Three specific resources that appear to be especially important to entrepreneurs and their businesses are: social-, reputational-, and human capital. Research suggests that the RBV does not, however, fully explain how and why certain firms possess competitive advantage in rapid and unpredictable conditions (Eisenhardt & Martin, 2000) and how resources contribute to a firm’s competitive advantage (e.g., Priem & Butler, 2001). Mahoney and Pandain (1992) argued that competitive advantage requires a distinctive competence, and one specific competence is social competence (Baron & Markman, 2003). While social competence is important to all entrepreneurs, it may be especially valuable to women entrepreneurs because of the importance of interpersonal skills and relationships to the success of women entrepreneurs (Aldrich, 1989; Brush, 1992: Gundry & Ben-Yoseph, 1998).