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欧洲员工喜欢安定 害怕创业风险

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Risk-takers Are A Rare Breed in EU

摘要:是什么原因让欧洲人喜欢朝九晚五的生活,而不愿意自己独立开创企业?欧盟在过去5年里对2.1万欧洲人和美国人做了一个调查,试图从中找到答案。

What makes people shun the relative security of full-time employment and start up a business themselves? The European Union wants to know, because with entrepreneurship come job creation and growth. For the past five years, the Union's head office has financed an annual poll of more than 21,000 people on both sides of the Atlantic.

是什么原因让欧洲人喜欢朝九晚五的生活,而不愿意自己独立开创企业?欧盟在过去5年里对2.1万欧洲人和美国人做了一个调查,试图从中找到答案。

据美国《国际先驱论坛报》1月19日报道,欧盟日前公布的最新调查结果显示,与美国人相比,大多数欧洲人不喜欢冒险,创业意识也比较淡薄。有人以为,繁琐复杂的行政程序也许是压制欧洲人具备创业意识的根本原因。所以,一旦简化程序,欧洲的中小企业肯定会大量增加。但事实上,只有5%的被调查者认为,行政程序是阻碍它们创业的原因;而近一半人认为:“如果存在失败的可能,那就最好别开公司”。由此可见,阻碍欧洲人创业的真正原因是他们害怕失败的心理,而这样的美国人只有三分之一。

据统计,2003年,美国有将近2050万人开创了自己的公司,是法国同行的23倍、英国同行的9倍,德国同行的7倍。

欧盟官员兹欧里克认为,如果欧洲人能够摈弃怕输的心理,则会有更多人自己开公司;欧洲人对风险的态度与美国人显然不一样。在欧洲,冒险失败一次,就不会再有翻盘的机会。他认为,为了鼓励创业,欧盟不应该将破产程序设计得像现在这样繁琐,应该让人们更容易获得贷款资助,即使对有过失败经历的人也应该这样。

另外,欧洲人年纪越大,越不愿意冒险。这份调查显示,15岁至24岁的年轻人中有55%的人期待在未来5年中自己当老板。但是对于55岁以上的人来说,只有18%的人愿意这么干。

报道说,也许,年轻人是欧洲开启创业精神的助推器。但是,看看现在欧洲出生的人口越来越少,还能指望谁呢?当然并不是所有欧洲人都如此,调查显示,欧洲一些小国家的人,如葡萄牙人,希腊人,爱尔兰人和拉脱维亚人等,则比较喜欢自己创业。(朱红隽)

What makes people shun the relative security of full-time employment and start up a business themselves?

The European Union wants to know, because with entrepreneurship come job creation and growth. For the past five years, the Union's head office has financed an annual poll of more than 21,000 people on both sides of the Atlantic.

The most recent of these studies, released this week, shows that despite efforts to make the Union more competitive, the majority of its citizens remain consistently less entrepreneurial and more risk-averse than their American counterparts.

That's not necessarily true of all Europeans: The word entrepreneur may be French, but the poll found that people from smaller countries like Portugal, Greece, Ireland and Latvia were much more enthusiastic about working for themselves.

But putting regional variations aside, the bottom line for Europe was that fewer European respondents said they would choose self-employment - 45 percent said it was their preference - than their American counterparts, at 61 percent. And the most striking part of the survey was the Europeans' explanations of their responses.

It has long been assumed here that red tape is holding back Europe's entrepreneurial spirit. With shorter waiting times to register companies and easier procedures for hiring, the argument goes, new European businesses would sprout like tulips in a Dutch greenhouse.

The survey told a different story. Europeans essentially said they couldn't be bothered with the effort involved in starting a business: They wanted a regular, fixed income and a stable job.

The upshot of this for Europe is that even if governments managed to cut red tape, their citizens might still prefer to have a comfortable job working for someone else. Only 5 percent of Europeans said fear of red tape or reluctance to battle bureaucracies was holding them back.

A corollary to this is the fear of failure in Europe. Half of all European respondents agreed with the statement, "One should not start a business if there is a risk it might fail." Only one-third of Americans agreed.

There were an estimated 20.5 million people working in start-up companies in the United States in 2003, the latest year for which data were available, according to the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor, a London-based research organization.

This is 23 times the number of those working at startups in France - far greater than the population differences between the two countries. The U.S. number was also 9 times the number of those in Britain and more than 7 times that of Germany.

If Europe can successfully diminish the stigma of failure, more people would be willing to start their own businesses.

"There is a completely different attitude toward risk," said Zourek of the European Commission, comparing Europe with the United States.

In Europe, "once you try a venture and you don't succeed, you don't get a second chance, but you get a stigma," he said.

The European Union, he said, should make bankruptcy procedures less burdensome and make getting credit easier for risk-takers, even those who have failed before.

In this survey, 55 percent of Europeans aged 15 to 24 said that it would be "desirable" for them to become self-employed in the next five years. Among those 55 and older, only 18 percent said the same.

Young Europeans could be the motor of entrepreneurship. But with European countries having some of the lowest birth rates in the developed world, who will take their place?

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