Using a randomized experiment in Chile we study the impact role models have in the context of a training program for micro-entrepreneurs. We show that being in a group randomly chosen to be visited by a successful alumnus of the program increases household income one year after, mostly due to increased business participation and business income. We also randomized the provision of personalized “consulting sessions” vis-a-vis group sessions, and observe similar effects on income, with the role model intervention being significantly more cost effective and better suited for less experienced businesses.
Role Models or Individual Consulting: The Impact of Personalizing Micro-entrepreneurship Training
Inspiring aspiring entrepreneurs with a speech from successful entrepreneur role models can be as effective as providing business planning support in fostering business growth, while being significantly cheaper.
Lafortune, J., Riutort, J., Tessada, J. (2018). 'Role Models or Individual Consulting: The Impact of Personalizing Micro-entrepreneurship Training'. American Economic Journal: Applied Economics.