The Causes and Consequences of the Initial Network Positions of New Organizations: From Whom do Entrepreneurs Receive Investments
Administrative Science Quarterly (December 2008)
This paper examines the mechanisms by which organizations establish their initial network positions, or sets of network ties. Although there has been significant research on the evolution of organizational network positions, how a new organization establishes its original network position has received more limited attention. I attempt to redress this imbalance using two competing logics, one based on the previously developed network ties and human capital of a new organization's founders and the other based on a new organization's early accomplishments. I test these logics in a study of venture capitalists and other investment organizations forming investment ties with (e.g., investing in) 92 Internet security ventures. In contrast to the literature on network position evolution, I find that new organizations take multiple paths to their initial network positions, with which path an organization takes being determined by when it forms its first ties.
Catalyzing Strategies and Efficient Tie Formation: How Entrepreneurial Firms Obtain Venture Capital Ties.
Joint with Kathleen Eisenhardt (Stanford University)
Academy of Management Journal (Forthcoming, 2011)
Although network ties are crucial for firm performance, the strategic actions by which executives actually form ties are relatively unexplored. In contrast, we contribute a new construct, tie formation efficiency
, and clarify its importance for superior network outcomes. Then building on detailed case data from 9 Internet security ventures seeking to form new investment ties, we induct a theoretical framework addressing how executives form ties efficiently. We unexpectedly identify two paths. One relies on existing strong direct ties
. The other employs a second new concept, catalyzing strategy
, by which executives advantageously shape their firm's opportunities or others' inducements to form ties. Overall, we add to the nascent literature on how strategic action, especially by low-power actors such as entrepreneurs, shapes critical network outcomes.
Working Papers (Email for copies)
Entrepreneurial Beacons as Singular Triggers of Foundings: The Yale Endowment, IPOs, and the Rise of Venture Capital.
Joint with Rory McDonald (University of Texas-Austin) and Emily Cox (University of Washington)
In preparation for Revise and Resubmit, Organization Science.
How Audiences Vary in Using Past Performance and Status-Affiliation Signals: A Study of Entrepreneurs Evaluating Venture Capitalists' Quality
The Influence Structural Commitment on the Performance and Formation of Network Ties: A Comparison of Super Angels and Venture Capitalists as Entrepreneurial Investors.
Joint with Rory McDonald (University of Texas-Austin)
The Interplay of Legal, Temporal, and Social Defenses in the Formation of Corporate Venture Capital Relationships: It Does Take a Village (and More) to Raise a Firm.
Joint with Riitta Katila (Stanford University) and Jeff Rosenberger (WealthFront)