Career patterns in self-employment and career success

Michael Koch, Sarah Park, Shaker A. Zahra

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


A substantial body of research examines entry into and exit from self-employment. However, little is known about the career patterns of the self-employed, their transitions into and from self-employment and the success associated with different patterns of their careers. To address these issues, we examine the career patterns of individuals with self-employment experience and their relationship to objective and subjective career success using data from the German Household Panel (SOEP). Our results show that persistent self-employment careers have higher gross labor income and exhibit higher job and life satisfaction than all other self-employment career patterns.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number105998
JournalJournal of Business Venturing
StateAccepted/In press - Jan 1 2019



  • Career patterns
  • Career success
  • Self-employment

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