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Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Your Criminal Kid Is Probably Going to be the Next Mark Zuckerberg, Study Says

Posted By on Wed, Feb 27, 2013 at 8:00 AM

click to enlarge A young entrepreneur
  • A young entrepreneur

For those tired parents who are stashing money specifically because they know they'll be bailing their punk-ass kid out of juvenile jail again, just know, there's going to be a return on your hard-earned cash.

A new study conducted by UC Berkeley scholars shows that badly behaved children tend to grow up to be really incredibly rich and successful entrepreneurs. We're talking the Bill Gateses, who had to go to therapy as a child for his behavioral problems, and the Mark Zuckerbergs, who was disciplined in college after creating Facemash, of the world.

Of course, not every kid booked into juvenile hall shares that destiny, so don't get excited just yet, parents; the study noted that these criminal kids generally have a bit of luck to boot, including a high IQ, wealthy parents, and exceptionally high self-esteem.

Here's how Professor Ross Levine of the Haas Economic Analysis and Policy Group, explains the results:

"Our data revealed that many successful entrepreneurs exhibited aggressive behavior and got in trouble as teenagers. This is the person who wasn't afraid to break the rules, take things by force, or even be involved in minor drugs."

The researchers combed data from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth, a representative sample of 12,686 males and females between the ages of 14 and 22 when they were first surveyed in 1979; interviews with participants have continued to present day.

In terms of earnings, the study found that successful entrepreneurs displaying these traits typically started their careers as high-earning salaried workers, and when they branched out on their own and successfully established their companies, they often enjoyed a 70 percent boost in earnings.

So be proud of your troubled brat, and just hope they grow up to be one of the rich ones.

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About The Author

Erin Sherbert

Erin Sherbert

Erin Sherbert was the Online News Editor for SF Weekly from 2010 to 2015. She's a Texas native and has a closet full of cowboy boots to prove it.


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