Regulatory focus, environmental turbulence, and entrepreneur improvisation

  • Lingyu Hu
  • Jibao Gu
  • Jianlin Wu
  • Augustine A. Lado


Improvisation is increasingly recognized as a critical strategy used by entrepreneurs for effectively dealing with unexpected events. Nevertheless, limited effort has been exerted in the investigation of the antecedents of entrepreneur improvisation. This study proposes and analyzes regulatory focus as an important antecedent of entrepreneur improvisation, and examines the moderating role of environmental turbulence in this relationship. Data are obtained from a two-wave survey of 99 entrepreneurs in the largest economic area in China. Empirical results indicate that promotion focus (but not prevention focus) is significantly related to entrepreneur improvisation. Furthermore, environmental turbulence significantly moderates the relationship between prevention focus and entrepreneur improvisation. These findings advance the understanding of entrepreneur improvisation and regulatory focus theory, and provide practical implications for entrepreneurs, investors and boards of directors.


Regulatory focus theory Entrepreneur improvisation Environmental turbulence 


Compliance with ethical standards


Natural Science Foundation of Anhui Province (No.:1708085MG174, PI: Professor Jibao Gu).


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Lingyu Hu
    • 1
    • 2
  • Jibao Gu
    • 1
  • Jianlin Wu
    • 1
  • Augustine A. Lado
    • 3
  1. 1.School of ManagementUniversity of Science and Technology of ChinaHefeiPeople’s Republic of China
  2. 2.Logistics and e-Commerce CollegeZhejiang Wanli UniversityNingboChina
  3. 3.School of BusinessClarkson UniversityPotsdamUSA

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