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Entrepreneurial team formation: an exploration of new member addition.

We explored in this article the process of entrepreneurial team formation. As theory specific to this topic is scant, we drew first on disparate views of team formation and its correlates; we then called upon in-depth interviews to provide deeper, nuanced insights into this dynamic process of creation. Our focus is team member addition. We identified resource-seeking and interpersonal attraction as primary alternative motivators for new teammate addition; however, we also illustrated how these motivations may be complementary in practice. Finally, we considered in some depth how new member identification and selection processes may unfold as new ventures are formed.


Most people familiar with new venture creation agree that successful new venture management cannot be reduced to a set of simple rules or techniques. The process unfolds through a series of judgments based on a wide range of knowledge and experience; it also involves an evolving tapestry of human interaction, cooperation, and coordination. Accordingly, people play a critical role in determining the success of new ventures and, by extension, the economic and social benefits they imply. Although the importance of the individuals who create organizations has long been appreciated, scholarship that focuses on the entrepreneurial team is just developing.

For many years, scholars interested in the human components of entrepreneurship focused on the individual entrepreneur. This focus characterized the early "trait" studies of entrepreneurship (McClelland, 1961) and is also present in much of the more recent work on the role of cognition in entrepreneurship (see Forbes, 1999, for a review). Even many sociological and economic studies of the human components of entrepreneurship have emphasized individuals (e.g., Amit, Glosten, & Muller, 1990; Birley, 1985).

In contrast, recent research reflects a growing interest in the entrepreneurial team, which we define as the group of people involved in the creation and management of a new venture (Cooper & Daily, 1997; Kamm, Shuman, Seeger, & Nurick, 1990). The shift to a team-based approach is evidence of the theoretical maturation of entrepreneurship research, which increasingly explores new venture creation and management at multiple levels of analysis (Aldrich, 1999; Van de Ven, 1993). The interest in teams also reflects prevalent insights from practice. Venture capitalists, e.g., consistently mention new venture team quality as an important funding criterion (MacMillan, Siegel, & Narasimha, 1985; Zacharakis & Meyer, 1998). This emphasis makes sense because, while many determinants of new venture performance may be beyond management control (e.g., market conditions and competitor response), the entrepreneurial team is a relatively controllable entity. If well understood, the process of team formation could be shaped to enhance ventures' chances of success.

In short, research on entrepreneurial teams represents a constructive and promising development. While important empirical insights about entrepreneurial teams are accumulating (e.g., Clarysse & Moray, 2004; Francis & Sandberg, 2000; Ruef, Aldrich, & Carter, 2003; Ucbasaran, Lockett, Wright, & Westhead, 2003), additional theoretical work is needed. Because entrepreneurship research by its very nature involves the study of beginnings (of new technologies, of new firms, etc.), an appropriate place to take up the study of entrepreneurial teams is with the process by which these teams form.

The literature sheds little light on the process of entrepreneurial team formation. There are at least two main reasons. The first reason is a variant of the "left-censoring" problem that confronts many areas of entrepreneurship research (Aldrich, 1999). Entrepreneurial teams are not readily identifiable until they have already passed through several formative stages (Gartner, 1985; Katz & Gartner, 1988). This makes it difficult both to identify emerging teams and to collect data that are not retrospective or colored by the outcomes. The second reason is that organizational behavior research about teamwork has largely focused on behavior in existing work teams and in teams without hiring authority, ignoring team formation. Thus, there is little existing theory regarding entrepreneurial team formation (Cooper & Daily, 1997; Kamm et al., 1990).

Although new venture team formation has received little systematic study to date, team composition and its effects have been studied in research on top management teams (TMTs). This body of work further supports the idea that understanding team formation may be critical to new venture success because TMT composition impacts organizational outcomes. For instance, TMT functional heterogeneity increases the likelihood of strategic change (Lant, Milliken, & Batra, 1992; Wiersema & Bantel, 1992), increases strategic consensus (Knight et al., 1999), and enhances performance (Bunderson & Sutcliffe, 2002), but it can also create cognitive and affective conflict (Amason, 1996; Kamm & Nurick, 1993; Miller, Burke, & Glick, 1998). Despite this conflict, research suggests that heterogeneous TMTs perform better because their ability to leverage multiple perspectives improves their decision making (e.g., Miller et al., 1998 Simons, Pelled, & Smith, 1999). Since the TMT research does not address how these heterogeneous teams are formed, however, it remains unclear whether these composition effects apply in entrepreneurial teams.

Given the important roles that entrepreneurial teams play in new ventures, and given the lack of concrete research for guidance, we aimed here to develop a foundation and direction for future research. We limited the scope of the analysis to new member addition for three reasons. First, in evolving team-based ventures, the addition of a new member is a critical and common development. The choice to add a member is important because it materially alters the available human capital and potentially changes the culture and direction of the new venture. In addition, the manner in which the decision to add a member is made and implemented lays the groundwork for the strategic decision-making process that may imprint itself on the fabric of the venture for the long term (Boeker, 1989). Second, incidents of new member addition represent identifiable events in the team-formation process that are, in many cases, conscious, deliberate actions on the part of the team. These features make new member addition an attractive starting point for the study of entrepreneurial team formation, because they provide researchers with a conceptual foothold from which to undertake activities conducive to the development of theory, such as mapping the process of team formation, talking about the process with subject teams, and comparing different evolutionary paths across teams. Third, the entire spectrum of issues associated with team formation is too extensive to be suitably discussed in one article; focusing on new member addition enables us to explore issues in depth. We are mindful of the wider range of issues that comprise team formation; e.g., the dismissal and replacement of team members (Ucbasaran et al., 2003). However, we consider other processes here only to the extent that they affect new member addition.

First, we review and discuss the literature on new member addition to reveal the explicit and implicit theories currently operating. Implicit theories reflect beliefs about cause-and-effect relationships, guide information processing about social reality, and underpin the explication of phenomena, even if the implicit assumptions or premises are never stated as such (e.g., Dweck, 1996; Dweck, Chiu, & Hong, 1995). Implicit theories help define conceptual categories that represent a starting point from which we can develop higher level concepts, properties, and relationships (Glaser & Strauss, 1967). Second, we draw on our recent interviews with entrepreneurial teams to extend this discussion. Finally, we identify fruitful avenues for further inquiry and discuss some of the methodological challenges that researchers face. Overall, this article is intended to sharpen researchers' sensitivities to key facets of the entrepreneurial team-formation process and to take initial steps in developing a theoretical model of that process.

Literature on New Member Addition

Two general explanations for new member addition exist in the entrepreneurial team literature. One view sees addition as a rational process driven by economic, instrumental considerations; another view sees the addition process as driven primarily by interpersonal attraction and by social networks.

According to the first explanation, new members are added in response to a search process set in motion by the team's desire to fill particular resource needs. Several early conceptual studies propose such an explanation. Sandberg (1992) speculate that founders assemble entrepreneurial teams as a means of "filling the gaps" in their own competencies. Elaborating on such a perspective, Kamm and Nurick (1993) proposed a decision-making model whereby the existing entrepreneurial team seeks partners on the basis of the perceived needs of the team. This model assumes that the team performs a systematic self-assessment of its resources and compares this against some ideal inventory of resources. The ideal inventory may be determined by the goals of the firm or it may flow from some minimal set of resources needed to prevent failure. Similarly, Larson and Starr (1993) propose a network model of new venture formation where new member addition is initiated by the team's perception of its needs. For example, the authors describe the search process as one of trial-and-error, where the decision to initiate the search is based on perceived need, but the team does not have a preconceived view of how to identify a new member. The trial-and-error process is undertaken with the understanding that although the outcomes are not predictable, they do yield various alternatives.

A resource-dependence view appears implicit in the competency-driven search model: the process is intendedly rational and focuses on identifying the candidate with the best access to resources critical to moving the firm forward. Kamm and Nurick (1993) discuss how members are identified and selected. Like Larson and Starr (1993), they depict the choice as being motivated by resource acquisition. Kamm and Nurick (1993, p. 21) explain that the decision to add a member begets a series of follow-on decisions: "... a constellation of decisions follows: where to find partners; how to choose the best one(s); and how to convince them to participate."

Recent work by Ucbasaran et al. (2003) also reflects the resource-dependence view of new member addition. They propose that team members are added to fill gaps in skills and to provide necessary human capital to pursue the goals and strategies of the new venture. This view predicts that small teams and homogeneous teams are most likely to add members since they are likely to be deficient in resource quantity or diversity. To examine this, Ucbasaran et al. studied 90 owner-managed ventures in the United Kingdom from their founding in 1990 through 2000. As expected, the size of the founding team was negatively associated with entry of new members to the team; however, there was no support for the hypothesized negative association between functional heterogeneity of a founding team and entry of new members. Implicitly, this model predicts not only when members might be added, but also what type.

The second explanation for new member addition is rooted in the social psychological needs of existing team members (ETMs) (Bird, 1989; Sapienza, Herron, and Menendez, 1991, p. 265) suggest: "Whom [the existing team members] want to hire," in their view, "is in part driven by a desire to duplicate their own qualities and in part by a desire to perpetuate the type of business or atmosphere which already exists." Moreover, in small, family-owned businesses, Ruef et al. (2003) found that entrepreneurial team composition was powerfully influenced by relational trust and homophily (i.e., similarity) of personal characteristics of team members such as gender, ethnicity, and occupation. Likewise, homophily is a reasonable explanation of Neiswander, Bird, and Young's (1987) finding that entrepreneurs with technical backgrounds tended to hire as initial employees family and friends with technical backgrounds. As mentioned above, Clarysse and Moray (2004) posit that engineers hired other engineers to fulfill resource needs; however, homophily may also be a plausible explanation. Chandler and Lyon (2001) found that functional diversity was not a major criterion for considering additions to the new venture team in a study of 12 startup teams in Utah; rather, the most common criterion stated by the founders was having a common interest in the technology or service provided by the business.

Despite the apparent contrast, instrumental and social explanations are not mutually exclusive. For example, Larson and Start (1993) acknowledge the important role that personal relationships play in the process by which teams search for new members, but their model maintained that the selection of new members proceeds in accordance with strategic criteria. Likewise, although Kamm and Nurick (1993) posit an intendedly rational process, they also acknowledge that "ready access" and "chemistry" play a part in new member identification and selection. Convenience, or cost of search, also plays a part in the process, since social networks provide inexpensive and trusted sources of information about available resources. Ensley, Carland, Carland, and Banks (1999) interviewed eight teams highlighted in Inc. magazine and found that social networks were the most common source for business partners. In addition, Francis and Sandberg (2000) argue that personal and strategic factors combine to explain new member addition. Building on Starr and MacMillan's (1990) notion of "social contracting" in new ventures, Francis and Sandberg (2000) contend that friendship allows the venture to bring in people who would otherwise price their services beyond the reach of a startup venture if friendship is not involved. Thus, personal attraction of the target new member can be used for an explicitly instrumental purpose in the construction of the new venture team. In short, even when teams engage in a rational, conscious decision to add members with skills and knowledge defined as necessary for venture success, the search set may be affected by relationships, networks, and features of the individuals that make them similar to the existing team.

Theoretical Explanations of New Member Addition

This section builds on the literature reviewed above by making more explicit those theoretical assumptions that past studies have tended to leave implicit and by "unpacking" more fully those theories that are explicitly referenced.

New Member Addition as Resource-Seeking Behavior

The theoretical perspectives most closely associated with resource seeking are human and social capital theory, and the resource-dependence view. Human and social capital perspectives are concerned with how and why people--and, by extension, teams and organizations--use intangible assets to enhance their prospects for success. The resource-dependence view holds that organizations seek to reduce the uncertainty associated with acquiring the resources necessary for success. For both perspectives, "success" depends on the goals and the business model, where resource needs reflect the firm's strategic direction.

Human capital refers to human knowledge and skill that can be converted into valuable economic outputs. Implicitly, a central question asked by human capital theorists is: "What is the set of skills and knowledge that will optimize the performance of this organization?" Knowledge and skills relevant to entrepreneurial team formation include those that have the potential to contribute to the economic output of the firm, such as an individual's education, industry experience, and general management ability. Human capital is like traditional, tangible forms of capital, such as financing or manufacturing plants, in the sense that investments can be made in knowledge and skill that enable the firm to compete more effectively and, thereby, generate superior returns (Becker, 1994; Pfeffer, 1996). A hypothetical human capital explanation for entrepreneurial team new member addition might be: "Beth was added because she had a deep knowledge of the technology we were dealing with, and we believed she could help us break through the engineering barriers that were preventing us from developing a working prototype."

Social capital focuses on intangible assets that enable actors and organizations to access social resources embedded within some larger social context (Bourdieu, 1985). Because this larger social context can be considered a "network," social capital theory is linked to "network theory" (Burt, 1992). Unlike network theory, however, a central question that social capital theory seeks to answer is why organizations exist even in the absence of market imperfections (Nahapiet & Ghoshal, 1998). According to this perspective, critical aspects of new members include their business connections as they pertain to the new venture's ability to access funding, customers or other valuable resources, as well as the their ability to function and to create value (Florin, Lubatkin, & Schulze, 2003). A social capital explanation for new member addition may be: "John was added because he had close ties to the venture capital community. We anticipated that we were going to need to raise venture capital, and he is a person who fits into our culture and values."

With regard to questions about "whom to add," the resource-dependence perspective (Pfeffer & Salancik, 1978) comes to conclusions similar to those of human and social capital theories but is driven by a different rationale and process. Resource dependence holds that organizations survive only to the extent that they have access to or control over critical resources. Resource-dependence theory asks: "How can the organization most effectively reduce uncertainty regarding access to critical external resources?" Managers are driven by attempts to eliminate the uncertainty surrounding resource exchange by co-opting or acquiring those entities that control needed resources. In this view, one can see the evolution of the entrepreneurial team as a response to the changing resource needs of the firm. Bygrave (1987) used the resource-dependence perspective to explain how venture capital syndicates or communities are formed; he concluded that venture capital network formation is a by-product of attempts to reduce uncertainty regarding the flow of capital, information, and opportunity. A primary difference between the social capital and resource-dependence theories is that the former emphasizes the reasons that the effectiveness of the venture could be enhanced by including a member within the organization, as opposed to leaving that person outside organizational bounds; whereas the latter is only concerned with reducing uncertainty regardless of whether this means making the person a member of the organization.

Human and social capital theories have important similarities and differences. Both assume a team-level goal: that of success within some larger competitive context. But they offer different definitions of what constitutes success. Whereas in human capital theory the goal is economic returns, the goal in social capital theory is the procurement of social resources. These goals may lead to adding the same resource, as in the case of paying customers who bring revenue to a new venture. But they need not always be the same since it is possible for ventures to accumulate resources, such as additional investment funding, in ways that enhance the viability of the venture without necessarily delivering economic returns. The competitive context envisioned by the two theories is also slightly different. In human capital theory, the context is strictly the marketplace of firms. Owing to its disciplinary roots in economics, some variants of human capital theory envision the marketplace to be populated by rational actors who interact with one another on an arms-length basis. In social capital theory, the context includes sociological dimensions that affect transactions in the sense that interactions among actors are understood to be structured by relationships and perhaps by institutional forces as well. Clearly, much work has been done to bridge the gaps between economics and sociology in recent years, so these differences should not be overstated. Still, the theories differ in their heritage and emphasis in ways that continue to affect how they are used today.

Human capital theory, social capital theory, and the resource-dependence perspective all have normative implications for entrepreneurial team member addition. All imply that teams should attract individuals who have the capacity to generate returns or to procure resources. Buchholtz, Ribbens, and Houle (2003, p. 506) explain that in human capital theory, "firms weigh the costs of current investments against the benefits of future returns when deciding what investments to make in the development of human capital." Normatively, the individual who maximizes the positive gap in benefits over costs should be chosen; if no individual offers a positive value, no addition should be made. Similarly, social capital theory suggests that the choice of team members should be driven by a calculation of who can best bring important contacts and use existing relationships effectively; if relying on market relationships is superior, no individual should be added. The resource-dependence perspective suggests that the team should forge connections with those most able to reduce resource-access uncertainties. Such access should be achieved in the lowest cost manner; it does not require adding members. For example, a banker could be added to a venture's board of directors.

Considered as normative suggestions, and considered in isolation from one another, the views suggest somewhat different pictures of entrepreneurial team member addition. Taken to its extreme, the human capital view may suggest that teams that possess all the skills and knowledge necessary to survive in a highly dynamic and uncertain environment should be formed. The problem is that "owning" all the resources necessary to compete and survive is rarely possible for young ventures (Stevenson & Gumpert, 1985). Yet, by this logic alone, if a single individual possessed the skills and knowledge needed, building a team or adding even one member would be redundant. The social capital view of team formation suggests adding members so long as the internal functioning and value created by so doing exceeds what could be achieved by leaving the relationship at arm's length. The resource-dependence theory implies that the team must balance the need for resources with the additional complexity introduced as additional decision makers are added to the team. These rational perspectives provide convincing objectives for new team formation but offer little guidance to the process for achieving, or even recognizing, optimal configuration.

New Member Addition as a Manifestation of Interpersonal Attraction

In contrast to the view that new member additions are a consequence of the team's search for resources, a second explanation holds that new member addition is a consequence of an inherent human desire for interpersonal attraction and social connection. As previously noted, several studies found that entrepreneurial team members often share similar relationships, personal connections, and backgrounds, and that at times, this tendency can create extremes of homogeneity in the team (Neiswander et al., 1987; Ruef et al., 2003). One theoretical basis for new member addition based on interpersonal attraction and social connections can be found in similarity/attraction theory (Byrne, 1971), which has been widely applied in the small group behavior literature. Similarity/ attraction theory asserts that individuals are attracted to other similar individuals and will tend to form groups with people who share similar values, approaches to problem solving, backgrounds, education, personality, and other identifiable characteristics. Identifying and adding members who are similar may be driven by desires to maintain the existing "atmosphere" in the team and venture, to perpetuate the views of founding members, and possibly to maintain control over the organization. These motivations based on similarity may or may not be aligned with the resource needs of the new venture.

In addition to the social psychology perspective of similarity/attraction, sociology and the study of social networks provide an explanation for new member similarity on the basis of the mechanism of homophily. Homophily represents a sociological explanation for why organizations are populated by members with like characteristics (Ruef et al., 2003). In this view, the basic explanatory mechanism is one of probability of contact: because people socialize in pairs and groups with those similar to themselves, contact between similar people occurs at much higher rates than contact between dissimilar people. Search, by this view, is conducted in a satistying, nonexhaustive manner so that the likelihood of adding a member similar to oneself is high (Bott, 1928; McPherson & Smith-lovin, 1987; McPherson, Smith-Lovin, & Cook, 2001). This explanation is not inconsistent with the social psychological explanation offered by similarity/attraction theory, but it differs in that it operates at the level of pairs and networks, not at the level of individual people. It also operates in a more impersonal, probabilistic manner.

Together, the processes of homophily, similarity/attraction, and social categorization suggest that when given the choice, individuals will interact with others like themselves (e.g., Burt & Reagans, 1997). These sociological and psychological theories help explain why several studies found that similar relationships, personal connections, and backgrounds tend to be evident in the new members that entrepreneurial teams choose, even while rational explanations might call for such commonalities to be overruled by a need for more diverse knowledge and experience. These theories consider similarity/attraction processes possible for both ascribed (age, nationality, and gender) and achieved characteristics (education, experience, and functional background).

Whereas much of the literature carries the prescriptive implication that new members of entrepreneurial teams ought to be chosen based on knowledge demands and resource connections, there is evidence that new member addition as it actually occurs may be better explained by social-psychological theories. Note that social capital theory also recognizes the functional aspects of liking, trusting, and having similar values to other team members. Clarifying whether the choice of a new member is driven by instrumental factors, interpersonal ones, or some combination of the two is quite challenging (Saparito, Chen, & Sapienza, 2004). Therefore, it is important for researchers using either instrumental or relational approaches to attempt to account for or to control for differing explanations of the same outcomes. Table 1 outlines the two main theoretical rationales that are implicit in existing accounts of new member addition in entrepreneurial teams.

It should be noted that member addition is not always a strategic choice. The addition of a new member may occur against the wishes of the existing team and/or in accordance with criteria imposed by other forces, such as institutions providing resources. Institutions of this kind, such as government regulations or powerful investors, might mandate that the team add a chief executive officer (CEO), an accountant, or some other individual before it is permitted to proceed (Bruton & Ahlstrom, 2003). This institutional view of new member addition is not a central part of the literature on new venture team creation. We concentrate on new member addition within the framework of strategic choice, although we recognize that this framework cannot explain all member additions.

Integrative Observations and Their Implications for Research

In the previous section, we identified several theoretical perspectives relevant to research on entrepreneurial teams. However, these perspectives were not developed with entrepreneurial teams in mind and, in many cases, do not explicitly address the process of team formation. In this section, we compare these perspectives with insights drawn from interviews with actual entrepreneurial teams. Here we integrate existing theory with interview observations in order to develop a research agenda that can advance work on this subject.

The interviews were conducted during the early stages of a multiyear project through which we were studying the evolution of entrepreneurial teams in university-based spinouts. Because there is little existing theory regarding the process of entrepreneurial team formation, we wanted to lay the groundwork for future attempts to develop grounded theory (Glaser & Strauss, 1967) regarding this process. The interviews were conducted with members of three entrepreneurial teams of spin-out companies formed at two large, public research-oriented universities in the Midwestern United States. These companies were formed to commercialize technologies developed by academic scientists (Vohora, Wright, & Lockett, 2004) and with the assistance of the universities' technology transfer offices, the administrative units that coordinate the commercialization of research at their respective institutions.

The three companies, to which we assigned the pseudonyms DataStor, NanoDirect, and SurfaceTech, were between two and five years of age at the time the interviews were conducted. They were selected on the basis of two key criteria. First, they were still sufficiently small and young that at least one of the original founders was still involved as a top manager. Second, each had added at least one new member. These criteria enabled us to obtain information about instances of new member addition from the founders, whose centrality, authority, and tenure rendered them important decision makers and data sources. In addition, we interviewed other top managers and, in one case (SurfaceTech), an influential advisor to the management team. In total, we interviewed six people.

We interviewed each subject individually. All of the interviews were recorded and transcribed. Each of us independently reviewed the transcriptions and produced memos (Glaser, 1978). As a team, we compared our memos and inductively formulated several insights that we consider critical to the development of grounded theory in this area.

Our use of these interviews is not intended to verify current or proposed theory. Rather, we intend to uncover gaps and/or contradictions in the theoretical perspectives previously outlined, to illustrate and illuminate key issues in the area of new member addition and, in the process, to identify promising avenues for future research. In particular, we discuss issues corresponding to the four key insights that emerged:

1. Who is added to a team affects not just the content or the capacity of the team, but also how the team does what it does.

2. No single explanation of a new member addition is likely to be complete.

3. New member addition does not occur at a single point in time; it comprises the component processes of identification and selection.

4. The timing and sequence of addition may be a fruitful area of investigation.

The Effects of New Member Addition on Group Processes

Existing research from a rational perspective emphasizes how new member addition increases team capacities. Examples of such additive effects include forms of human capital, such as members' education, their industry backgrounds, or their industry experience. Entrepreneurial teams sometimes reference such additive forms of human capital by advertising, e.g., that their team includes "a combined total of 75 years of industry experience." Missing from these perspectives is the fact that attributes of new members combine with those of the existing team in ways that change capacities rather than simply adding to given capacities. For instance, some additions may change how the team functions. Team process effects are important to the extent that they enhance or diminish the team's productive capacity. For example, certain forms of diversity may contribute to the team's ability to solve problems in a creative fashion or, alternatively, may result in affective conflict (Ensley, Pearson, & Amason, 2002; Smith et al., 1994). If the contribution of the diverse skills and experience is negated by a decrease in cohesion, then the net effect of adding a member might be negative. An instance of this kind of "subtraction by addition" occurred in one of the firms we interviewed.

DataStor was founded in 1999 to commercialize data storage software initially created in a university lab. The founder and his investors agreed that succeeding in this market required a fully staffed, functionally balanced management team; therefore, they hired very aggressively starting in fall 2000. Working in conjunction with their investors, the founders interviewed and hired many vice presidents (VPs). "We just kept the drive going towards hiring," this founder noted. "We hired a VP of Engineering, VP of Sales and Services, VP of Business Development, and hired some director-level people of business development, marketing, and communications." Retrospectively, the founder realized that these additions had unintended consequences for the internal processes of the team:</p> <pre> The VP of Engineering was a mistake ... I thought he was a sack of gold but he really wasn't. He wasn't real eager, he was not a good personality fit, and he was not a good manager. He was kind of a Chicken Little. With the slightest setback, he would say that we should sell the company, and he had a terrible attitude ... The VP of Engineering clicked with one of the directors of business development we hired ... and they were both disruptive. What ended up happening was [they] hit it off and there was some other technology they were looking at. They eventually actually left [DataStor]. If they hadn't left, they would've been terminated. </pre> <p>If measured at the point of entry, typical research measures would show that this person added to the stock of human capital; however, the addition of this VP, in truth, disrupted the team's functioning in a significant way and ultimately led to a reduction in human capital when both he and the director of Business Development left the firm. These unintended process changes within the entrepreneurial team can have long-lasting effects, such as changes in the interaction norms within the team. If, for instance, the founders had reacted to negativism by suppressing discussion, it might have diminished the prospect that alternative courses of action would be realistically appraised in the future (Janis, 1983).

Future research should include process considerations in conceptualizing the potential effects of new member addition. Recent research on boards of directors and TMTs has integrated team composition and process considerations in assessing addition or changes in membership (e.g., Carpenter & Westphal, 2001; Forbes & Milliken, 1999). However, process effects are likely to be even more pronounced in entrepreneurial teams than in established teams such as TMTs and boards because entrepreneurial teams are not preexisting entities. Entrepreneurial teams are likely to have fewer established norms and processes to guide functioning and, thus, may be heavily affected by the addition of a single member. Moreover, most entrepreneurial teams are smaller than most established TMTs and boards, at least in their early stages. Thus, again, a single member is likely to have a more significant impact on team function.

Conflicting Explanations for New Member Addition

In addition to the difficulty of capturing the timing of team-formation processes, researchers must contend with the fact that different team members may offer different explanations for a member's addition. Moreover, even when members agree, alternative explanations may be offered by third-party observers, such as a researcher or an investor. Such difficulties should not be surprising because new member addition is a complex social process, because alternative explanations are not necessarily mutually exclusive, and because multiple motivations are likely both within individual team members as well as across the team itself.

Theories addressing the causes and effects of multiple or contradictory attributions of new team member addition would certainly contribute to our understanding. For example, differences in members' explanations may be attributable to members' jockeying within the team for greater power to further their own personal agenda. Alternatively, these same differences may reflect honest differences of opinion regarding what the optimal strategy of the venture is. Yet, the former cause entails potentially destructive consequences, whereas the latter one may reflect a healthy, well-functioning team. Likewise, differences between explanations offered by team members and those offered by investors may reflect the presence of cognitive biases on the part of one or more of these parties. Such biases may be predictive of either productive cognitive conflict or destructive affective conflict or both.

An example of multiple explanations for the same team member addition arose in one of our sample teams. SurfaceTech is a spinout that applies high-tech surface coatings to microelectromechanical systems (MEMS). Its customers are companies that use MEMS devices in a variety of applications. The company is managed by a husband-and-wife team of founders. Both of them have advanced degrees in scientific research related to their product. At the time of the interviews, the entrepreneurial team consisted of these two individuals and a part-time intern who was also a graduate student in a relevant science. However, the company once had a CEO. Differing explanations arose concerning the reasons for the CEO's departure.

One founder explained, "It's kind of funny. We tried to hire a CEO. I thought that would be a great idea because both of us had a technical background, not much business. I have a small business myself, as a hobby. I still have that business. But I still have [mostly al technical background. So, [an advisor] recommended a person, and I hired that person."

The founder then commented, "I wanted him to go out and raise money for me and he screwed it up so I let him go ... It didn't work out ... And we also felt, like, frustrated because we wasted all this time and energy ... Why? it's chemistry. I hired him to get us money. He cannot raise money, he screwed it up and I let him go. It didn't work out. Chemistry."

A person who had acted as an advisor to the firm prior to the CEO's addition offered the following explanation:</p> <pre> I have sent her tour people to run the business, all of whom would be spectacular. The first one spent four to five months validating a business model and creating a business plan for them. He went to [a venture capital firm] with the idea and a proposal to raise $1 million. [The venture capital firm] was interested. When he came back and told [the founders] what it would mean, they refused to consider having less than 50% of the company ... Eventually, he decided to withdraw from the company. [The CEO] said she [one of the founders] was obsessed with control. She lied to him about grant money she said she had received, and he felt he couldn't trust anything she said. Since then, I have sent her three more highly experienced people. None have been able to work with her and all have left after about a month. Now, I have said "the hell with it." I still think that there is a market for what they have, but I don't think they are going to go anywhere. </pre> <p>At least two interesting complexities emerge from these two explanations of the same team formation event. First, the founder actually offered two different explanations for the departure, but she seemed to regard them as being related. The first explanation had to do with "chemistry," which presumably refers to the interpersonal relationship that developed between the married founders and their newly added CEO. The second explanation identified skill deficiencies on the part of the CEO: specifically, his inability to attract the resources that he was hired to help attract. Thus, she invoked both interpersonal attraction and resource-seeking explanations for firing the CEO. However, she seemed to see these explanations as intertwined, as she offered them alternately in rapid succession, as though one helped to explain the other.

Second, the advisor to SurfaceTech offered an explanation for the CEO's departure that differed entirely from the founder's account. It reminds us that it is important to clarify the phenomena to which we would like to generalize: Are we interested in cause and effect on some absolute or general level, or are we interested in how certain individuals experience or perceive the process? If the former is the case, some external data or sources are necessary to illustrate the harmony between the perceived and the actual circumstances. If founders' experience of the process is what is central, then our task should focus more on maximizing the likelihood that the subject will indeed share the impressions formed fully and honestly.

The SurfaceTech account captures important lessons. Primarily, some theoretical perspective will aid in understanding potentially ambiguous and conflicting messages. A framework can help. In fact, an earlier exercise--that of elaborating the theoretical bases for past empirical findings--is intended to help researchers as they strive to be more precise in theory development. However, researchers also need to remember that organizational actors are not bound by the same philosophical strictures. To organizational actors, multiple theoretical explanations are not only potentially complementary but may actually coexist as part of the same explanation, perhaps because the concepts involved interact or overlap in ways that may not be evident in the corresponding academic theories.

The previous description suggests that theoretical and empirical advances about entrepreneurial teams are likely to be limited if research fails to include responses from multiple constituents (e.g., Gibson, Zellmer-Bruhn, & Schwab, 2004; Tsui, 1984). Including data from multiple respondents improves research in several ways. Primarily, it reduces potential problems of social desirability response bias (Nunnally, 1978), wherein respondents provide explanations that make them look "good." In the case of entrepreneurial team new member addition, respondents may be predisposed to give artificial, rational explanations in order to appear intentional and strategic, rather than reveal the ad hoc, nepotistic, or institutional explanations that might be more accurate. Furthermore, including explanations from multiple constituents provides insight into role consensus and allows an understanding of cognitively complex situations.

Our observations also suggest a need for prospective studies in addition to cross-sectional and retrospective research. Cross-sectional research may fail to capture the unfolding process effects of new member addition. In addition, our theoretical understanding of entrepreneurial team new member addition is likely to be inhibited by retrospective accounts because of the tendency of individuals to artificially impose an order to past events that fits current circumstances or understandings (Weick, 1979).

New Member Addition as a Decision-Making Process

To this point, we have focused to a large extent on questions of who is added to the team and why. We can gain additional insight, however, by examining more carefully the question of how members are added to an entrepreneurial team. It is helpful to break the addition process into two main stages: identification and selection. A third dimension, recruitment--the process of inducing a prospective member to join the team--is also important (e.g., Williamson, 2000), but for the sake of brevity, we focus on identification and selection only.

Identification. Identification is the process by which one or more ETMs become aware (actively or passively) of certain individuals as prospective additions to the team (prospective team members [PTMs]). This can happen in three ways: (1) through direct contact, in which a PTM and an ETM know one another; (2) through indirect networking, where a PTM and an ETM do not know one another but know a third person who introduces them; or (3) through an impersonal search process, whereby a PTM or an ETM identify one another without previously knowing one another or without having some other individual in common.

Instances of direct networking include cases where the PTM is a family member, friend, or associate of the ETM. Thus far, empirical evidence suggests that such situations dominate in the early stages of team formation (Neiswander et al., 1987; Ruef et al., 2003). Instances of indirect networking include cases where the PTM is recommended to the ETM by an investor or an advisor. Research in the venture capital literature suggests that one of the key roles of formal venture capital investors is to help identify and recruit members of the management team (Gorman & Sahlman, 1989; MacMillan, Kulow, & Khoylian, 1989). Instances of impersonal search include cases where the ETM receives a resume from someone, where the ETM hires an executive search firm to find candidates (such as at DataStor), or where the ETM searches the websites of other firms to identify PTMs among the management teams of those firms.

Identification processes vary based on who initiates the identification process. Either the ETM or the PTM may approach the other to inquire about the prospect of having the latter join the team. For example, NanoDirect, a spinout engaged in nanotechnology instrumentation equipment, decided to add a chief technology officer on the basis of an unsolicited call from the leading application scientist in the industry. The VP of Marketing described this process:</p> <pre> So, this person who worked for a competitor as [its] main designer wants to come [work for us]. He identified us through a web search. The company he worked for in the UK went through acquisitions and was starting to lose its technical edge, and he was interested in going someplace. He wanted to live in the U.S. I don't know if we had realized that we really didn't know what we were doing as far as [identifying] ourselves as a nanopositioning company. We didn't have anybody who knew how to design this, so I don't know if we were going to keep going forward. [We thought to ourselves,] "What are we doing? We are supposed to be a positioning company, and we don't have a person who knows how to make this thing work!?" So, one thing led up to another. Me and [the founder] realized that we needed a person who knows how to design. He came, and he actually knew how to design. </pre> <p>Thus, NanoDirect responded positively to this direct solicitation from an outside, unknown party, and when the inquiry came, it prompted NanoDirect to do a thorough self-examination. The team then realized that NanoDirect had no commercially viable product, and it decided that this outsider could provide the human capital necessary to remedy the problem. In contrast to many additions that involve proactive searching on the part of the team, this addition was essentially reactive. Moreover, it was "impersonal" in that no prior personal relationship existed between the PTM and the ETM.

When networks play a critical role in the identification of PTMs, the resource-dependence perspective may be useful for explaining key aspects of this process. For example, who initiates contact may be explained in part by the position or status of ETMs within a network. Specifically, ETMs who are higher in status or whose networks are more dense may be more likely to experience instances in which PTMs themselves initiate the identification process. Further, the network position of a third party, such as a venture capitalist or a professional search firm, may explain factors such as the number or quality of PTMs identified by that third party.

Social capital theory may help explain why the identification of previously known candidates predominates. This theory suggests that not only are instrumental skills and knowledge taken into account by the ETM, but so too is an estimation be made of how well the new member may "fit in" with the values, norms, and system in place (Sapienza et al., 1991). It is easier and more certain, of course, to make positive assessments of individuals personally known to one or more members of the ETM.

Selection. In instances where teams have discretion over their additions, once PTMs have been identified, the team can decide who should be added. Social psychological theories that explain how small groups make decisions may be useful in predicting how the selection process unfolds and what types of individuals are most likely to be selected. At least two major alternative models of group decision making can help explain and predict selection decisions.

The first model, the "political" model, holds that managerial decisions are a function of the interests held by various individual members of the management group (Cyert & March, 1963). According to this model, a critical dimension of the decision process concerns the distribution of power within the team, or, more precisely, the extent and manner in which influence on the selection decision is shared within the team. Teams may make selection decisions by consensus, by a majority vote of the members, or through authoritative action on the part of one or more leaders of the team. In entrepreneurial management teams, the influence of venture capital investors in adding (or replacing) managers may also affect this selection decision model (MacMillan et al., 1989). The selection processes may range from consensus to fiat, depending on the relative power of the venture capitalists to the other members on the new venture board. Given the fiduciary rights, responsibilities, and equity stakes of venture capitalists on new venture boards, the question arises as to whether they should be considered insiders (ETMs) or outsiders. They are insiders in the sense that they are often intimately involved with the venture, but they are also outsiders in that they are also equity owners who have power over the team. However, they are classified, the issue of how their power may be exercised or altered in the course of selection decisions is of theoretical and practical interest.

A second major model of decision making, the "cognitive" model, is most relevant to the collection, exchange, and use of information within the group. The cognitive model has its roots in information processing theory, which holds that group decisions represent a process whereby groups scan the internal and external environments for information that can be used to resolve uncertainty in a manner that will bring the group (and/or its organization) into proper alignment with the external environment (Galbraith, 1977; Huber & Daft, 1987). The cognitive model differs from the political model in that it generally presumes alignment among the interests of individual group members; however, the cognitive model's recognition of issues such as cognitive biases and group dynamics makes it, like the political model, different from a purely "rational" model of decision making (Jackson, 1992; Milliken & Vollrath, 1991).

There are several specific constructs and theories that are relevant to understanding the political dimensions of the decision process. For example, procedural justice theory (Tyler & Blader, 2000) captures the extent to which members of a decision-making group perceive that a process has been "fair" or "just," which is to say it has been conducted according to norms of impartiality and respect. Indeed, Sapienza and Korsgaard (1996) found that entrepreneurial CEOs are most able to influence the support and commitment of outside board members when the CEOs provide information in a timely and procedurally just manner. Such a finding presumably has implications for both the outcome and the process of selecting new team members in venture capital-backed firms. Alternatively, the construct of decision centralization has been used to capture the extent to which dominant managers seek to control organizational decision making (Bourgeois & Eisenhardt, 1988; Collins, Ryan, & Matusik, 1999). Presumably, centralization can enhance time efficiency, but it may do so at the cost of consensus and commitment (Bourgeois & Eisenhardt, 1988).

One theory that is relevant to understanding the cognitive dimensions of the selection process is transactive memory theory (Wegner, 1987), which argues that group members' awareness of each others' knowledge and expertise positively influences the group's task performance. Thus, this theory might predict that existing members of an entrepreneurial team make more effective selection decisions when they possess a strong transactive memory system, one which enables them to select members based on an assessment of the group's existing knowledge inventory. Another construct of importance within the cognitive model is that of decision comprehensiveness (Fredrickson, 1984). In this context, comprehensiveness may be understood to represent the extensiveness of the selection process.

Because the exercise of power in a group is interrelated with the way information is handled in the group, the two models outlined above are not mutually exclusive. For example, the comprehensiveness of a group decision process may vary inversely with its centralization; i.e., the level of screening or due diligence on a candidate may be related to the source of identification and to the centralization of the selection process. However, many forms of evaluation, such as psychological tests or background checks, do not require the involvement of the existing team and may be less susceptible to power issues. Thus, a process may be both highly centralized and comprehensive. This occurred at DataStor after a human resources (HR) person was added to the firm and introduced a "predictive index" tool into their hiring process. The founder of DataStor described the HR manager in the following manner:</p> <pre>

She has a Master's degree in organizational development and she has both an intuition about people ... combined with deep, good academic experience, and tools like "predictive index." ... She came in and brought a real discipline, which was missing. And so, I think we got the advantage of her discipline and intuition. </pre> <p>Note the degree of confidence that the founder exhibits in the new decision-making process:</p> <pre> If you ask her, she'll say that there were mistakes made [before she came]. And I think we wouldn't have made them if she had handled it. [HR people] can improve and use processes that make sure you get the right people--can help the process and support the decision making." </pre> <p>Here, the founder views the process as more rational and more complete than it was before adding the HR person. Yet clearly, the process became centralized, too, since the HR person legitimates the selection of any new member. These changes in the selection process are likely to have important implications. For one thing, they are likely to affect who is chosen. The outcomes of the predictive index, combined with the valued intuition of the new HR manager, are new factors that influence the way PTMs' skills and attributes are assessed and weighted. For another matter, they are likely to influence what happens after the member is selected. For example, it may be that new additions are received into the new venture by ETMs with a sense of legitimacy that was missing in the days prior to these changes, when members might have wondered whose influence and which criteria were at work in the selection process. Now, even if ETMs disagree with the process, the process itself appears to be more clearly defined and widely understood than before. Differences of this kind can affect how new additions are integrated into the team and, ultimately, the functioning of the team.

Finally, changes in the process by which new members are added can provide clues regarding larger political changes within the team that affect the direction and strategy of the venture. For example, DataStor's adoption of a more comprehensive, centralized hiring process may have been interpreted as a signal that the firm was looking to make key decisions in more formal ways that were more readily explainable to key external resource providers. Such an interpretation is supported by the fact that DataStor was acquired by a large, high-profile firm shortly after our interview was conducted.

Timing of New Member Addition

The role of timing is a critical, often overlooked, issue in organizations research (Ancona, Okhuysen, & Perlow, 2001; Mitchell & James, 2001; Zaheer, Albert, & Zaheer, 1999). Indeed, we could find little research on entrepreneurial teams that explains the timing of new member addition. The research suggests implicitly that the timing of new team member addition is driven either by the particular resource needs of the venture or by personal timelines or preferences of the team. Although both sets of factors likely play a role, other factors also matter.

The theory of timing implicit in resource-seeking explanations of team member additions is essentially one of problemistic search. This view suggests that the addition process is triggered when problems that cannot be solved by the team arise (Cyert & March, 1963). The theory of timing implicit in social explanations of new member addition is less clear. Clearly, even here some perceived need must trigger search. Once triggered, however, this view suggests that where one looks, whom one looks to, and how one looks will be driven by affiliation, familiarity, and "liking" dimensions not typically considered in rational, economic models. For example, one could theorize that new member addition occurs at the confluence of the availabilities of both the PTM--who may, e.g., be looking for work--and that of the ETM, whose circumstances allow them to entertain the possibility of adding a PTM.

Let us now consider some alternative explanations based on theories of how groups operate in a temporal context. One explanation can be derived from theories of temporal entrainment. The temporal entrainment view focuses on the fact that entrepreneurial teams operate within, and are at times enmeshed with, other systems (e.g., venture capital networks, industries, technology development clocks) whose practices and rhythms encourage a certain pattern and tempo of activity. These external parties and contexts both enable and constrain the nature and timing of a new venture team's work. The temporal environment, especially as it relates to temporal entrainment, influences a team's ability to change (Zellmer-Bruhn, Waller, & Ancona, 2004). Entrainment is "the adjustment of the pace or cycle of an activity to match or synchronize with that of another activity" (Ancona & Chong, 1996, p. 258). Entrainment occurs when teams become synchronized with external pacers--a pacer outside the new venture itself "captures" the pace of the venture. Over time, teams match their activity to external temporal forces (Ancona & Chong, 1996; Kelly & McGrath, 1985; McGrath & Kelly, 1986).

Changes in entrepreneurial team membership may become tied to regular external milestones such as funding cycles, grant deadlines, trade shows, and reporting cycles. The extent to which such external pacers exist and operate in membership change in entrepreneurial teams is a promising avenue for future research, as is the degree to which these teams have discretion in identifying and accommodating these external pacers or the degree to which they are imposed by the larger external environment, as institutional theory would suggest. Our interview with NanoDirect also provided an example of how external deadlines can prompt the addition of a new team member. The VP of Marketing shared this story:</p> <pre> Back then, we still had SBIRs and it was part of the SBIR fulfillment requirement that we have one or two or three items to test and we were not able to do that. We hired Dave with the idea we will need somebody like that later. [But since we had the SBIR deadline, we said,] "let's hire somebody like that now." </pre> <p>In this example, the decision to hire Dave was connected to the need to have working samples available to meet the requirements of the government funding the organization had obtained under the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) grant program. This external milestone prompted the addition of a member and had an impact on the future:</p>

<pre> We hired Dave with the idea of "over hiring." You know, we need somebody like that [capable of heading up operations and production] later. [Should we] get a good person right away even though [we] may not need everything they can do right now? That was kind of the question we struggled with for a long time. We need production. Do we hire somebody that's just in charge of the samples, or do [we] hire someone who can head up production right now but also has to do the production? </pre> <p>This comment shows that the need to meet the milestone of the SBIR prompted NanoDirect to hire someone with capabilities to address the future. So, in this case, the addition of the capabilities to the management team was not prompted by a direct need for those advanced skills and knowledge of production management, but rather by their stage of development.

Finally, in contrast to temporal entrainment that relies on regularly paced events, theories concerning the effects of interruptive events (Jett & George, 2003; Zellmer-Bruhn, 2003) may also shed light on the timing of membership changes. In a study of work teams, Zellmer-Bruhn (2003) found that environmental perturbations (e.g., reorganization, new product or service introductions, or changes in technology) prompted learning activities and adoption of new work practices in periods of high disruption. She theorized that such changes require a switch of focus from automatic processing to active cognitive processing (Louis & Sutton, 1991), to more situational awareness, and to a greater mindfulness (Gersick & Hackman, 1990; Langer, 1989). Thus, interruptive events prompt consideration of a team's needs. This finding suggests that new venture teams are more likely to add members during or immediately after technological developments or changes, disruptive events with respect to potential competitors, or the like.

Empirical work that studies the timing of events in new ventures provides evidence of changes occurring due to interruptive events. Vohora et al. (2004) investigated patterns of growth in eight high-tech university spin-out companies and identified four "critical junctures" that these companies need to overcome if they are to succeed. At two of these junctures, opportunity recognition and sustainability, the ventures require additional human capital, social capital, and internal capabilities to continue to develop. These would be the time periods during which we would expect to see new members added to the entrepreneurial team. Another interruptive event that could trigger new member addition would be the exit of a member (Ucbasaran et al., 2003). In another recent study, Clarysse and Moray (2004) traced membership and role changes in a new venture team of a university-based technology startup over a period of 20 months and found that external shocks fundamentally altered the structure of the team. For instance, a failed demo of the firm's initial product occurred at essentially the same time that customer interest in a second product facilitated internal reorganization of the company, including the replacement of the CEO by someone from within the venture. Thus, at the target firm, strategic changes forced by market responses triggered role changes.

Gersick (1994) also found that both time-based and event-based pacing triggered strategic reorientations. Time-based pacing such as semi-yearly review and planning sessions revealed inconsistencies between expectations and performance, which triggered changes in sales strategies. Event-based pacing, such as monitoring for the completion of milestones, initiated changes in the firm's merger and acquisition strategies. Gersick's study focuses on changes in strategy, not personnel, but we believe that membership changes are more likely during strategic change than during periods of stability. In short, although none of these studies focuses specifically on changes in team composition, they provide evidence that timing issues should be considered in studying entrepreneurial team formation. In particular, considering temporal entrainment theory in conjunction with interruptive events may bring needed insight for future research into the timing of member addition.

Together, our observations and existing research point to the value of applying a temporal lens to entrepreneurial team member addition. This conclusion reinforces our previous recommendations for longitudinal research, particularly to capture the causal relationships between disruptive events and membership changes in the entrepreneurial team. These conclusions imply a need for in-depth case studies that collect sufficient contextual information to reveal the key internal and external pacers of new ventures.


The emerging interest in entrepreneurial teams represents a promising and important development in the domain of entrepreneurship research. In this article, we have advanced that particular line of work dealing with new member addition in entrepreneurial teams by making two specific contributions to the literature. First, we have clarified the existing state of knowledge by reviewing past empirical work and by elaborating on the theoretical explanations that underlie it. In particular, by exploring explanations that emphasize resource seeking and interpersonal attraction mechanisms, we have helped to integrate past work with well-established theories from various domains relevant to management research. Second, by drawing on interviews with entrepreneurial spinout firms in the early stages of the formation process, we have identified, illustrated, and illuminated some specific aspects of team formation that are especially interesting and promising. We have also identified theoretical perspectives and constructs that may be helpful to researchers seeking to further explore these issues.

This article also has several limitations. First, it focuses almost exclusively on theoretical issues to the exclusion of methodological ones. We acknowledge that the study of new member addition entails some methodological challenges, particularly in the areas of research design and construct measurement. To some extent, researchers can draw on methods being employed elsewhere in management research. However, because some of these issues remain unexplored even in larger, more established organizations, and because of the contextual idiosyncrasies of new venture contexts, researchers will also have to exercise creativity and dedicated reflection in this pursuit. Second, in focusing on new member addition, we have left unaddressed some elements of the team-formation process, such as the reassignment of titles and responsibilities among team members (Clarysse & Moray, 2004), which may affect the larger subject of team formation.

We hope that future researchers find these contributions useful in guiding their theoretical and empirical research on this important and currently understudied aspect of entrepreneurship.


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Please send correspondence to: Daniel P. Forbes, e-mail: at the University of Minnesota, Carlson School of Management, 321-19th Avenue South, 3-365, Minneapolis, MN 55455.

Daniel P. Forbes is an assistant professor at the University of Minnesota, Carlson School of Management, Minneapolis, MN.

Patricia S. Borchert is a doctoral candidate at the University of Minnesota, Carlson School of Management, Minneapolis, MN.

Mary E. Zellmer-Bruhn is an assistant professor at the University of Minnesota, Carlson School of Management, Minneapolis, MN.

Harry J. Sapienza is a professor and Curtis L. Carlson Chair in Entrepreneurial Studies at the University of Minnesota, Carlson School of Management, Minneapolis, MN.

An earlier version of the article was presented at the University of Nottingham workshop on this topic in June 2004. Funding from the National Science Foundation (Grant # SES-0322-512) supported the development of this article. We are grateful to Bart Clarysse for his feedback.
Table 1
Explanations for New Member Addition

General explanation                           Interpersonal
for new member         Resource-seeking       attraction
addition               New member is added    New member is added
                         to enhance the         in order to
                         team's present or      satisfy social
                         future inventory       psychological
                         of resources.          goals of existing
                                                team members.
Implied sequence       Problemistic search    Opportunistic search
  of team actions      Team identifies a      Team adds a member
                         resource problem       with whom it is
                         and then               already in contact
                         undertakes a           without first
                         search for a new       identifying a
                         member intended        problem or
                         to solve the           undertaking a
                         problem.               search.
Representative         Kamm and Nurick        Larson and Starr
  theoretical            (1993); Larson         (1993); Francis
  literature linked      and Starr (1993)       and Sandberg (2000)
  to new member
Representative         Ucbasaran, Lockett,    Sapienza, Herron and
  empirical studies      Wright, and            Menendez (1991);
  literature linked      Westhead (2003)        Ensley, Carland,
  to new member                                 Carland, and Banks
  addition                                      (1999); Chandler
  entrepreneurial                               and Lyon (2001):
  teams                                         Ruef, Aldrich,
                                                and Carter (2003)
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Author:Forbes, Daniel P.; Borchert, Patricia S.; Zellmer-Bruhn, Mary E.; Sapienza, Harry J.
Publication:Entrepreneurship: Theory and Practice
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Mar 1, 2006
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