Abstract

A continuing debate in the existing literature is whether diversity of founding team composition is beneficial to performance. One view argues that diverse founding teams have a broader set of skills and a wider variety of information and experiences, therefore, are more successful than homogeneous teams (Eesley et al., 2012). A second view holds that divers teams are less cohesive and, therefore, ineffective (Yu, 2002), which indicates that social similarity is more beneficial for team formation than diversity. Prior research has improved our understanding of founding team composition and performance, but the literature is confined to the heterogeneity-homogeneity continuum. To the author’s knowledge, no entrepreneurship study has gone beyond the superficial surface distinguishment (functional vs. social characteristics) by looking at the influence of actual and perceived deep-level diversity within a founding team. Second, interpersonal feelings are shown to be important to entrepreneurship process, but only a few studies have explored the role interpersonal feelings play in the founding team dynamics. We need more studies in this area to understand whether or not actual and perceived deep-level diversity have different influences on founding team performance, and what role interpersonal feelings play on this relationship.

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