Entrepreneur Diary Study

Diary Research with Entrepreneurs and their Business Decisions.

Are you an early-stage entrepreneur?

You are invited to participate in a research study about entrepreneur's challenges and business decisions.


This research focuses on how entrepreneurs handle personal and business challenges while growing their businesses. This diary study follows occasional reports over three-months to track what happens for an entrepreneur and his or her business over this short timeframe.

extension Research Importance

Who might care and why.

Studying business and working in various jobs before starting a company can help us prepare for the many challenges (e.g., finances, relationships, staff, etc) in our entrepreneurial journey. We use our available experience, knowledge and resources once in the "real world", but we can't prepare for everything. New challenges test us. After things turn out "okay" is when we realise we handled them well. But when things don't turn out "okay" it's a different story.

This research is designed to explore how you, as an entrepreneur, respond to various business challenges over a relatively short three-month period. The goal is to look closely at these challenges, your decisions while addressing them and downstream effects from some of your decisions. This is a new approach to look an entrepreneurs' resilience in the face of various challenges and effects on their business.


Who is conducting this research?

The research is conducted by Aaron M Jensen, a doctoral researcher at the Hunter Centre for Entrepreneurship, a research centre at the University of Strathclyde Business School (Glasgow, Scotland). This research combines his personal and professional experiences in challenges of business innovation and questions about business success and failure.

Personal Experience Summary
1 Background in health care, retail, policy and information technology.
2 Roles for human resources, general management and operations consulting.
3 Affinity for systems architecture, business operations, and business analysis.
4 Masters degree in marketing at the University of Edinburgh Business School.
5 First degree in psychology from Washington State University (USA).

Support for this research is provided from the Hunter Centre for Entrepreneurship staff, with supervisors Dr Lucrezia Casulli (Lecturer) and Dr Sarah Dodd (Professor).

Participation Criteria

Who should participate in this study?

Entrepreneurs who are actively involved in their business are best for this research.
The following provides various criteria for this assessment:

Actively involved in key business decisions.

Actively growing the business.

Personal stake in the startup's success.

Core products/services sit within a ‘technology’ industry.

Actively manage business operations.

Your startup is within 10 years of launching.

Willing to report on your personal experiences with your startup.

Willing to participate in this study for up to 3 months.

These criteria are mainly to check your level of involvement in your startup.

Sound like you?

Yes, this is me!

Excellent! Please look further at what's involved to participate. We very much hope you'll join the study.

Doesn't really fit...

No worries! Please consider sharing this project with people you know.

I'm uncertain...

Consider this: If you are not certain that your business would keep going without your help, then you are likely to be an excellent candidate for this study.

What's your time committment?

Your involvement in this study entails the following:


Register Interest & Questionnaire

Visit the study website (entrepreneurdiarystudy.org) and register interest (5 minutes) and fill in a questionnaire about your start-up company.
About 15 minutes.



Meet the researcher for an initial interview.
About 40 to 60 minutes.


Recurring Questionnaire (Diary)

Complete an electronic diary entry twice a week for up to 3 months. This will be about 24 entries. Each entry should take 5 minutes.


Final Interview

Finally, meet the researcher for a final interview and debriefing about the study.
About 60 to 90 minutes.

spa Participation Benefits

What can you expect to gain?

On a personal level, benefits that you experience from participation in this research will vary. You may find that the diary format of this research helps you to communicate thoughts you would find it difficult to share otherwise. Or, the benefit may be more that this provides you with a form of personal record keeping. Certainly, other benefits may be experienced and this is part of the participation experience.

Regardless of what you experience while participating, you will be provided with a neatly curated copy of your interviews and diary entries, which serves to provide an archive that may bevaluable to you later on when charting your unique entrepreneurial journey. As well, as a participating entrepreneur, you will receive professionally prepared practical guidance based on the research findings.

security Privacy

How will your information be handled?

Information gathered during this project is used for research purposes and the contribution to general knowledge in entrepreneurship psychology. The goal here is to advance the academic field and give something back that'll be practical for entrepreneurs in the near future.

Ethical considerations and data protection are crucial to the success of this project and any identifiable information will be kept confidential in research findings. No financial data will appear on the questionnaire. Answers provided by participants will only be linked to the research by anonymized numbers. Only the research team will know your real identity and there will be no public disclosure initiated without fully authorized written consent.

Getting Started

Registration for study is now closed.