It has been widely established that small businesses fuel the growth and expansion of an economy. Entrepreneurial activities in South Africa are not sufficient to sustain growth that the country requires and a lack of an entrepreneurial mindset and skills have been found to be a significant challenge. The capacity for this country to develop and grow entrepreneurs to feed the growing economy will significantly determine its future. The purpose of this research paper is to explore the environmental factors that influence the development of entrepreneurs, in order to contribute to understanding how to effectively develop entrepreneurs. The family context within which an individual grows up is investigated as a possible source of developing strength of entrepreneurial characteristics. A survey of individuals from both entrepreneurial families and nonentrepreneurial families was conducted. Their entrepreneurial characteristics were tested against their family context and any significant relationships were identified. The results revealed that only Self-confidence, out of the six characteristics, was influenced by the family context. The other five characteristics do not show a relationship and are possibly influenced by other environmental factors. The study also revealed significant relationships between some of the characteristics. This may prove to derive some interesting research questions for future research.