PellissierVanBuer1996JABR

Verbal expressions of probability are frequently used to describe business and venture opportunities. This research investigates whether entrepreneurs and non-entrepreneurs interpret such expressions differently. We also investigate whether the interpretation of verbal probability expressions is related to the entrepreneurial proclivity of subjects, regardless of whether they are entrepreneurs. The Entrepreneurial Attitude Orientation (EAO) scale was used to measure entrepreneurial proclivity. Fifty-two subjects (17 entrepreneurs and 35 non-entrepreneurs) quantified thirty-five common verbal expressions of probability. The elicited quantifications of the probability phrases were highly variable between individuals, which is consistent with results reported elsewhere. We found no significant difference between the entrepreneur and non-entrepreneur groups’ interpretations of the phrases. No meaningful correlations were found between EAO score and probability phrase interpretations. Our results seem to indicate that the interpretation of subjective probability phrases is not related to entrepreneurial proclivity and that the probability phrases involved in the presentation of opportunity are unlikely to affect the way that an entrepreneur perceives that opportunity as opposed to a nonentrepreneur.

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