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Kids Breaking Rules Likely Entrepreneurs Later

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Photograph by Getty Images/iStockphoto

Is your kid always trying to get around the rules? Bending them and using mind-bending logic to get her way? Or simply dismissing rules that she feels are unimportant? She might be primed to start her own business later in life, says a study in the Journal of Vocational Behavior.

Following 1,000 children from age 10 until adulthood, Swedish researchers wanted to see how a variety of troublesome factors would influence the jobs kids later pursue in life. What they found may surprise you, and may make you want to encourage certain rebellious behaviors while suppressing others.

The researchers have found a link between rule-breaking activities—like skipping class and staying out late—and a tendency to pursue entrepreneurial endeavors later on in life. However, there's a specific difference between rule-breaking activities and actual crimes. Actual crimes that were obtained via police records—like stealing and destroying property—did not have the same link to entrepreneurial tendencies that rule-breaking activities did.

"It could be that part of entrepreneurship is knowing what you can get away with, both as a young troublemaker and a startup founder," Drake Bennett writes in an article for Businessweek.

Keep in mind, though, the rule-breaking behavior has nothing to do with how successful that future entrepreneurial pursuit will be.

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