To Agree or Not Agree? Consensus and Performance in New Ventures

28 Pages Posted: 9 May 2011

See all articles by G. Page West

G. Page West

Wake Forest University

G. Dale Meyer

The Meyer Group, Inc.; University of Colorado at Boulder; Western Partners Worldwide Foundation

Date Written: May 4, 2011

Abstract

It is an intuitively appealing notion that enhanced firm performance is associated with agreement by top managers on a fundamental set of strategic goals and on methods to accomplish those goals. Whereas previous studies have for the most part examined this relationship in larger companies competing in stable industries, the study reported here provides findings from newer entrepreneurial ventures in dynamic industries. Several important findings emerge from this study. First, managers’ assessment of better performance is not related to agreement on a primary set of strategic goals and means. Instead, perceived better performance is significantly and positively related to disagreement on secondary sets of strategic goals and means. Second, powerful individuals in top management teams have an important impact on the nature of the consensus-performance relationship. In new ventures the influence of the CEO’s perspective and behaviors in forging agreement cannot be overlooked. Third, these results are evident during the earlier life cycle stages of a venture’s development, and in dynamically changing competitive environments.

Keywords: consensus, top management, new venture

Suggested Citation

West, G. Page and Meyer, G. Dale, To Agree or Not Agree? Consensus and Performance in New Ventures (May 4, 2011). Journal of Business Venturing, Vol. 13, No. 5, 1998. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1831925

G. Page West (Contact Author)

Wake Forest University ( email )

School of Business
1834 Wake Forest Road
Winston-Salem, NC 27106
United States

G. Dale Meyer

The Meyer Group, Inc. ( email )

Interurban Park
1800 Bluebell Avenue
Boulder, CO 80302-8022
United States
303-442-4319 (Phone)

University of Colorado at Boulder ( email )

1070 Edinboro Drive
Boulder, CO 80309
United States

Western Partners Worldwide Foundation ( email )

Interurban Park
1800 Bluebell Avenue
Boulder, CO 80302-8022
United States

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