In new venture teams (NVTs), entrepreneurs think both individually and jointly. Entrepreneurial teams make a lot of decisions early that create path dependencies, such as the establishment of lasting values, norms, and procedures, initial corporate strategies, organizational culture, and human resource management (Baron et al., 1996; Boeker, 1989; Straw, 1991). Furthermore, collective cognition in entrepreneurial teams is more than simply an aggregation of individual modes of thinking (Chowdury, 2005; Cosette & Audet, 1992). Despite the collective nature of cognition in NVTs, influential individuals may have a disproportionate impact on decision-makingo processes. Indeed, founders can have imprinting effects on new ventures that create lasting effects on the firm (Baron, 2007; Barney et al., 1998; Baum et al., 1998; Nelson, 2003; Schein, 2002). Investigating such interactions among the levels of cognitive processing (Gregoire et al., 2011) can help build our understanding of the major influencers on NVT decision making.

Our study adds to existing research on new venture team cognition by diving deeper into the dynamic processes related to decision making. Specifically, we are interested in how influential team members impact the collective processes that lead to critical venture decisions. Our investigations will focus on how these influencers impact decision making through processes such as cognitive and affective team conflict, agreement on role identification, collective affect, and even individual level factors such as assertiveness.