Work context and employee behaviour as antecedents for intrapreneurship

J. P.C. Rigtering, U. Weitzel

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Intrapreneurial employees and intrapreneurial projects are considered to be an important driver of innovation and strategic renewal within companies. While many studies addressed the top-down implementation of innovative projects, analyses of employee initiatives in promoting innovation within companies are scarce. This paper therefore takes a bottom-up approach and focuses on employee behaviour and how it can be stimulated towards intrapreneurship. We propose and test a two-step model where formal and informal work context affects employees' intrapreneurial behaviour, which then provides the basis for bottom-up initiated intrapreneurial projects. Our empirical data consist of questionnaire responses of 176 employees in six Dutch companies. The results of structural equation model estimations indicate that formal organisational factors (horizontal participation, resource availability) affect employees' intrapreneurial behaviour, but also highlight informal factors such as trust in the direct manager. We also find that innovativeness and personal initiative, but not risk taking, play a role for an effective translation of employees' behaviour into intrapreneurial projects.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)337-360
Number of pages24
JournalInternational Entrepreneurship and Management Journal
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sept 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • Corporate entrepreneurship
  • Entrepreneurial orientation
  • Intrapreneurship
  • Organisational structure
  • Social exchange theory
  • Trust in manager


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