Entrepreneurs’ implicit and explicit achievement motives and their early international commitment

Rui Xue*, Gongming Qian, Zhengming Qian, Lee Li

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Citations (Scopus)


Entrepreneurs’ new ventures pursue different strategies in international markets; some are more committed to the foreign markets than others. Existing international management studies largely use entrepreneurs’ conscious rationale, such as profitability, risks, resource limitations, country-specific knowledge, and personal values, to explain the commitment diversities. Drawing from achievement motivation theory and cognition theory, this study adds entrepreneurs’ unconscious motives and differentiates between implicit and explicit achievement motivation as important forces driving the diversities of the commitment. Evidence collected in this study suggests that both conscious and unconscious achievement motives are related to the commitment but the relationships are moderated curvilinearly by overseas operation complexity and overseas competition intensity respectively. The findings of this study have important implications for entrepreneurs managing international business.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)91-121
Number of pages31
JournalManagement International Review
Issue number1
Early online date9 Feb 2021
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2021


  • Early international commitment
  • Explicit and implicit achievement motives
  • Overseas competition intensity
  • Overseas operation complexity


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