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The first phase of this research explored whether proactiveness and competitive aggressiveness were distinct dimensions of an entrepreneurial orientation. Table 1 shows the rotated principal factors solution. Twelve of the fourteen EO items had significant factor loadings ($".50) on one of the four factors. Such loadings are considered consistent with a conservative criterion (Kim & Mueller, 1978). The factors of interest to this studyproactiveness and competitive aggressivenessloaded on separate factors as suggested by Hypothesis 1. Cronbachs alpha was used to test the reliability of the scale items. For the three proactiveness items, the Cronbachs alpha was .80; for the two competitive aggressiveness items, it was .65. The sample size was rather small for this type of analysis (n=52) which may have potentially produced unstable factor loadings (Kim & Mueller, 1978). Therefore, a supplementary factor analysis was also conducted on the full sample of individual respondents (n=123) and produced substantially the same results.
Factor scores for the proactiveness and competitive
aggressiveness were compared to the four performance measures
using Pearsons correlation coefficients. Table 2
reports the correlational and descriptive statistics. These
indicate that proactiveness consistently had a strong positive
relationship to performance and that three of the four measures
were statistically significant. By contrast, the
competitive aggressivenessperformance results were
equivocal. Competitive aggressiveness was negatively related to
sales growth and was only very weakly associated with
profitability, financial strength, and overall performance.
Thus, Hypothesis 2 is supported as well. The results also
indicated that proactiveness and competitive aggressiveness were
correlated at the .26 level. Although this represents a
significant degree of correlation (p < .10), it indicates that
these two dimensions of EO exhibit a large degree of independent
variance as well.
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