Bumiputera Graduate Entrepreneurs in Describing Social Status and Their Social Status Attainment Experience

  • Nur Liyana Yasmin Mohd Razalli Faculty of Business and Management, Universiti Teknologi MARA (UiTM), 40450, Shah Alam, Selangor, Malaysia.
  • Mohd Ali Bahari Abdul Kadir Faculty of Business and Management, Universiti Teknologi MARA (UiTM), 40450, Shah Alam, Selangor, Malaysia.
Keywords: Social status, Bumiputera, Graduate, Entrepreneurs


Social status is essential to every individual whether they may or may not be aware of it and admit the importance of social status in their lives. Even in the case of Bumiputera graduates entrepreneurs, they acknowledged that social status is beneficial in businesses although some of them were reluctant to admit the importance of social status. That is not surprising because the Bumiputera has a culture of communicating indirectly. Being too honest is considered insensitive or rude. Interviews with seven Bumiputera graduate entrepreneurs in Klang Valley found that they have other ways to describe social status. To them, social status represents their view of themselves, their feeling of satisfaction, and the attention given to them. These elements change according to their achievements or failures in their lives. The model of social status attainment experience by the Bumiputera graduate entrepreneurs is also illustrated in this paper.


Download data is not yet available.


Abdollahyan, H., & Nayebi, H. (2009). Conceptualizing Occupational Prestige: An Empirical Case Study from Iran. Asian Journal of Social Science, 37, 192–207.

Abdullah, N., & Yaacob, Z. (2018). Predicting Entrepreneurial Intention Among University Students Using Theory of Planned Behavior. ASEAN Entrepreneurship Journal (AEJ), 4(2), 158–168.

Abdullah, Z. (2018). Exploring University Branding: Employers’ Expectation On University Graduates On Competency. Jurnal Personalia Pelajar, 21(1), 95–104.

Akpor-Robaro, M. O. M. (2012). The Impact of Socio-Cultural Environment On Entrepreneurial Emergence: A Theoretical Analysis of Nigerian Society. European Journal of Business and Management, 4(16), 172–183.

Amaran, M. A. (2015). Involvement of Graduates in the Field of Entrepreneurship in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. International Journal of Liberal Arts and Social Science., 3(9), 46–53.

Anderson, C., Hildreth, J. A. D., & Howland, L. (2015). Is The Desire for Status a Fundamental Human Motive? A Review of The Empirical Literature. Psychological Bulletin, 141(3), 574–601.

Anderson, C., John, O. P., Keltner, D., & Kring, A. M. (2001). Who Attains Social Status? Effects of Personality and Physical Attractiveness in Social Groups. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 81(1), 116–132.

Bartos, P., Rahman, A., Horak, J., & Jacova, H. (2015). Education and Entrepreneurship in The SME Segment in Economic Transformation. Economics and Sociology, 8(2), 227–239.

Bernama. (2019). Only 40pct of Companies are Owned by Malays, Other Bumis - Hatta. Malaysiakini. https://www.malaysiakini.com/news/482933

Bollo, H., Bothe, B., Toth-Kiraly, I., & Orosz, G. (2018). Pride and Social Status. Frontiers in Psychology, 9(1979).

Bosma, N., Hessels, J., Schutjens, V., Praag, M. van, & Verheul, I. (2012). Entrepreneurship and Role Models. Journal of Economic Psychology, 33(2), 410–424.

Brewer, J., & Gibson, S. W. (2014). Necessity Entrepreneurs: Microenterprise Education and Economic Development. In J. Brewer & S. W. Gibson (Eds.), Necessity Entrepreneurs: Microenterprise Education and Economic Development. Edward Elgar.

Brown, D. J., & Zeigler-Hill, V. (2017). Self-Esteem. In The Self at Work (1st Ed., p. 32). Routledge.

Cambridge University Press. (n.d.). Pride. Cambridge University. Retrieved January 4, 2022, from https://dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/english/pride

Cao, J., & Smith, E. B. (2021). Why Do High-status People Have Larger Social Networks? Belief in Status-quality Coupling as a Driver of Network-broadening Behavior and Social Network Size. Organization Science, 32(1), 1–22.

Cherry, K. (2021). What Is Self-Esteem ? Verywell Mind. https://www.verywellmind.com/what-is-self-esteem-2795868

Creswell, J. W. (2009). Research Design: Qualitative, Quantitative, and Mixed Methods Approaches. In SAGE Publications, Inc (3rd Ed.).

Crusius, J., & Lange, J. (2017). How Do People Respond to Threatened Social Status? Moderators of Benign Versus Malicious Envy. In R. H. Smith, U. Merlon, & M. K. Duffy (Eds.), Envy at Work and in Organizations (pp. 85–110). Oxford University Press.

Department of Statistics Malaysia. (2021). Graduates Statistics 2020. https://dosm.gov.my/v1/index.php?r=column/cthemeByCat&cat=476&bul_id=U1ltVWpwNXRNRUR2NlhRSHZmenRMUT09&menu_id=Tm8zcnRjdVRNWWlpWjRlbmtlaDk1UT09

Encyclopedia Britannica. (2019). Social Status. Britannica.Com. https://www.britannica.com/topic/social-status

Encylopedia. (2020). Introduction: Entrepreneurship. Encyclopedia.Com. https://www.encyclopedia.com/finance/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/introduction-entrepreneurship

Fairlie, R. W., & Fossen, F. M. (2018). Opportunity versus Necessity Entrepreneurship : Two Components of Business Creation. IZA Discussion Paper, 11258.

Fershtman, C., Murphy, K. M., & Weiss, Y. (1996). Social Status, Education and Growth. Journal of Political Economy, 104(1), 108–132.

Gabriel, D. I. (2014). Fundamental Aspects of The Entrepreneurship in The Contemporary Economic World. Annals - Economy Series, 4, 129–133.

Garaika, & Margahana, H. (2019). Self Efficacy, Self Personality and Self Confidence on Entrepreneurial Intention : Study on Young Enterprises. Journal of Entrepreneurship Education, 22(1), 1–12.

Garcia-Lorenzo, L. (2018). The Invisible Entrepreneur: from Unemployment to Unstable Self-employment. LSE Business Review. http://eprints.lse.ac.uk/87246/

Global Entrepreneurship Research Association. (2018). Global Report 2017/18.

Gregg, A., Sedikides, C., & Pegler, A. (2018). Self-Esteem and Social Status: Dominance Theory and Hierometer Theory? Encyclopedia of Evolutionary Psychological Science, 1–6.

Hamidon, S. (2009). The Development of Malay Entrepreneurship in Malaysia. Massey University.

Hamilton, R. T., & Harper, D. A. (1994). The Entrepreneur in Theory and Practice. Journal of Economic Studies, 21(6), 3–18.

Hodzic, S. (2016). Increasing PhD Students’ Employability by Focusing on The Academic Entrepreneurship. The Analysis of The Entrepreneurial Competences. Tuning Journal for Higher Education, 3(2), 347–387.

Ismail, N., Jaffar, N., & Hooi, T. S. (2013). Self-employment Intentions Among the Universities’ Students in Malaysia. Corporate Ownership and Control, 10(3), 456–463.

Jha, M. (2016). Opportunity Entrepreneurs Are Key to Jobs and Growth. World Bank. https://blogs.worldbank.org/jobs/opportunity-entrepreneurs-are-key-jobs-and-growth

K.Durkee, P., W.Lukaszewski, A., & M.Buss, D. (2019). Pride and Shame: Key Components of a Culturally Universal Status Management System. Evolution and Human Behavior, 40(5), 470–478.

Kalden, J. N., Cunningham, J., & Anderson, A. R. (2017). The Social Status of Entrepreneurs: Contrasting German Perspectives. The International Journal of Entrepreneurship and Innovation, 18(2), 91–104.

Kennedy, J. C., & Mansor, N. (2000). Malaysian Culture and the Leadership of Organisations : A GLOBE Study. Malaysian Management Review, 35(2), 42–53.

Kennedy, J., Drennan, J., Renfrow, P., & Watson, B. (2003). The Influence of Role Models on Students’ Entrepreneurial Intentions. Queensland Review, 10(1), 37–52.

LibreTexts. (2021). Social Status. LibreTexts.Org. https://socialsci.libretexts.org/@go/page/8035

Mack, N., Woodsong, C., MacQueen, K. M., Guest, G., & Namey, E. (2005). Qualitative Research Methods: A Data Collector’s Field Guide. Family Health International.

Mahadea, D., & Kaseeram, I. (2018). Impact of Unemployment and Income on Entrepreneurship in Post-apartheid South Africa: 1994–2015. The Southern African Journal of Entrepreneurship and Small Business Management, 10(1), 1–9.

Malebana, M. (2016). The effect of entrepreneurial role models on entrepreneurial intention in South Africa. Journal of Contemporary Management, 13(13), 90–116.

Mansor, T. R. T., & Daud, Z. (2020). The Effect of Social Network on Malaysian Malay-Owned SME Performance. Albukhary Social Business Journal, 1(1), 73–85.

Marzuki, S. Z. S., Kadir, M. A. B., Buyong, S. Z., & Junid, J. (2016). Motivating Factors Influencing Business among Youth in Malaysia. ASEAN Entrepreneurship Journal, 2(2), 37–45.

Mcewan, G. (2020). The Rise of the Necessity Entrepreneur. https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/rise-necessity-entrepreneur-professor-gary-mcewan

Merriam, S. B. (2009). Qualitative Research: A Guide to Design and Implementation (2nd ed.). Jossey-Bass.

Mersha, T., Sriram, V., & Hailu, M. (2010). Nurturing Opportunity Entrepreneurs in Africa: Some Lessons from Ethiopia. J. Global Business Advancement, 3(2), 155–175.

Milanov, H. (2015). Social Status in Entrepreneurship. In Wiley Encyclopedia of Management. John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Ministry of Education Malaysia. (2019). Laporan Kajian Pengesanan Graduan 2018.

Mirowsky, J., & Ross, C. E. (2003). Education, Socioeconomic Status, and Health. In Education, Social Status, and Health (1st Ed.). Routledge.

Mohammed, F. (2016). What Makes a Career Prestigious ? JSTOR Daily. https://daily.jstor.org/makes-career-prestigious/

Mondal, P. (2017). The Importance of Sociology to Society. https://www.yourarticlelibrary.com/sociology/the-importance-of-sociology-to-society-1219-words/8490

Mukherjee, K. (2016). The Psychology of the Successful Entrepreneur. International Journal of Ad- Vanced Engineering and Management, Technical and Scientific Publisher, 1(1), 25–32.

Ngah, R., Rahman, A. Z. A. A., & Buyong, S. Z. (2016). Entrepreneurial Self-efficacy and Entrepreneurial Intention of University’s Students: The Impact of Entrepreneurial Learning. Asean Entrepreneurship Journal, 2(1), 64–73.

Nowiński, W., & Haddoud, M. Y. (2018). The Role of Inspiring Role Models in Enhancing Entrepreneurial Intention. Journal of Business Research, 96, 183–193.

Pyakuryal, K. (2001). Weberian Model of Social Stratification - A Viewpoint. Occasional Papers in Sociology and Anthropology, 7, 14–25.

Razalli, N. L. Y. M., & Kadir, M. A. B. A. (2021). Understanding the Sociological Aspects Impacting the Business Endeavour Among Bumiputera Graduates. Malaysian Journal of Social Sciences and Humanities, 6(12), 213–222.

Reynolds, P. D. (1992). Sociology and Entrepreneurship: Concepts and Contributions. Entrepreneurship Theory and Practice, 16(2), 47–70.

Rivai, H. A. (2012). Factor Influencing Student’s Intention to be Entrepreneur: An Evidence from Indonesia Higher Education. ASEAN Entrepreneurship Journal, 12(1).

Rokhman, W., & Ahamed, F. (2015). The Role of Social and Psychological Factors on Entrepreneurial Intention Among Islamic College Students in Indonesia. Entrepreneurial Business and Economics Review, 3(1), 29–42.

Rose, J. P., & Vogel, E. (2017). Self-Esteem and Social Status. In Encyclopedia of Personality and Individual Differences (Zeigler-Hi). Springer, Cham.

Saputra, C. (2020). Social Status as a Nonverbal Language in Priyayi Society. Advances in Social Science, Education and Humanities Research, 509, 131–136.

Sarahyu, & Chung, H. (2017). Unemployment and Depression : Investigating The Pathway With Latent Deprivation and Economic Deprivation Theories. Proceedings of ISER 67th International Conference, Beijing, China, July, 9–12.

Shanka, B. B. (2016). Unemployment Experiences of Young Graduates and their Attitudes Towards Business Startups in Micro and Small Enterprises ( MSEs ): A Lesson from Southern Ethiopia. Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU).

Swatz, M. (n.d.). Repairing Job Identity Loss While Unemployed. Monster. Retrieved June 26, 2020, from https://www.monster.ca/career-advice/article/have-you-suffered-from-job-identity-loss

Tackey, N., & Perryman, S. (1999). Graduates Mean Business: A Study of Graduate Self-employment and Business Start-ups. In The Institute for Employment Studies - Report 357.

Van Osch, Y., Zeelenberg, M., Breugelmans, S. M., & Brandt, M. J. (2019). Show or Hide Pride? Selective Inhibition of Pride Expressions as a Function of Relevance of Achievement Domain. Emotion, 19(2), 334–347.

Wahlbeck, Ö. (2008). Entrepreneurship as Social Status: Turkish Immigrants’ Experiences of Self-Employment in Finland. Migration Letters, 5(1), 53–62.

How to Cite
Mohd Razalli, N. L. Y. and Abdul Kadir, M. A. B. (2022) “Bumiputera Graduate Entrepreneurs in Describing Social Status and Their Social Status Attainment Experience”, Malaysian Journal of Social Sciences and Humanities (MJSSH), 7(2), p. e001302. doi: 10.47405/mjssh.v7i2.1302.