“Entrepreneurship vs. Intrapreneurship” is a concept introduced by Arthur A. Thompson in his book “Crafting and Executing Strategy: The Quest for Competitive Advantage”. Thompson discusses the distinction between entrepreneurs and intrapreneurs, as well as the roles they play in different organizational settings. Here’s a breakdown of the comparison:


  • Entrepreneurship:
    • Independence: Entrepreneurs are independent individuals who start their own businesses.
    • Risk-taking: They take significant financial and operational risks to establish and grow their ventures.
    • Innovation: Entrepreneurs often introduce new products, services, or business models to the market.
    • Ownership: They have full ownership and control over their businesses.
  • Intrapreneurship:
    • Employment within a Company: Intrapreneurs work within an existing organization.
    • Calculated Risk-taking: They take risks within the confines of the established company, with the support and resources of the organization.
    • Innovation within Existing Structures: Intrapreneurs innovate and introduce new initiatives within the framework of the existing company.


  • Entrepreneurship:
    • Entrepreneurship is about creating and managing a new business venture. It involves a high degree of autonomy, risk-taking, and innovation.
  • Intrapreneurship:
    • Intrapreneurship is about entrepreneurial behavior exhibited by employees within an established organization. It focuses on driving innovation and new initiatives from within the company.


  • Entrepreneurship:
    • Risk of Failure: Entrepreneurs face a high risk of business failure, which can lead to financial loss and personal stress.
    • Resource Constraints: Entrepreneurs often face challenges in securing initial capital and resources for their ventures.
  • Intrapreneurship:
    • Corporate Bureaucracy: Intrapreneurs may encounter challenges navigating corporate hierarchies and processes.
    • Balancing Innovation with Existing Operations: Intrapreneurs need to find ways to introduce innovation while maintaining the stability of the existing business.


  • Entrepreneurship:
    • Starting a New Business: Entrepreneurs create new businesses from scratch, identifying opportunities and assembling resources.
  • Intrapreneurship:
    • Corporate Innovation: Intrapreneurs drive innovation and introduce new initiatives within an established organization, leveraging existing resources.

Scientific Sources:

  • The concepts of entrepreneurship and intrapreneurship have been discussed and developed by various management scholars. While Arthur A. Thompson’s work in “Crafting and Executing Strategy: The Quest for Competitive Advantage” provides a valuable framework for understanding the distinction between entrepreneurs and intrapreneurs, these concepts have been further explored and refined by various researchers in the field of entrepreneurship and organizational behavior.

Thompson 453 – 466 (figure 10.8)