Abstract

Scholars commonly assume that new ventures eventually outgrow the managing capabilities of their founders, yet empirical findings on the succession – performance relationship are mixed (Wasserman, 2003). One explanation for these conflicting results might be the fact that past research has not considered that in many first-time successions, founder-CEOs don’t fully leave the company but remain as a board chair or in an operating position (Rubenson & Gupta, 1992). Accordingly, founder-CEOs may still influence the actions and decisions of the top management team (TMT) in their new role as board chair or TMT member. Yet, literature on post-succession founder involvement is surprisingly scant. Hence, our study aims at explaining how the role of the founding-CEO following first-time successions affects levels of cognitive and affective conflict, and ultimately the quality of decision-making in TMTs.

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