CATALYST Issue 1 - Page 63

Future Proof The evolving environment Dr Sankalp Chaturvedi Associate Professor of Organisational Behaviour and Leadership, Imperial College Business School  It’s certainly true that genetics play a role in the development of behaviours such as leadership and entrepreneurship. The question is not whether it’s down to ‘nature or nurture’, it’s actually a result of both. As with IQ and personality, leadership/entrepreneurship behaviours have elements with which individuals are born. However, the majority of variances in these dimensions can be taught to individuals. Research has found that environment plays a bigger role in development of entrepreneurship than genetics.  Using a Swedish sample of identical and same-sex fraternal twins, we found that there is a strong genetic influence on females’ tendency to become entrepreneurs. Of all the personality traits, extroversion and neuroticism help the genetic influences on women’s tendency to become entrepreneurs. By contrast, males show a large shared-environment influence and negligible genetic influence on their tendency to become entrepreneurs, and extroversion helps men’s tendency to become entrepreneurs.  So, it is our evolving environment that actually plays the most significant role in determining whether someone will become an entrepreneur. Choices made regarding the type of school we attend, the subjects to which we are drawn and in which we excel, and the choices we make regarding university are the greatest influences on our career choices, as are our relationships with parents, teachers, family and friends. Issue 1 - 2017 63