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Keywords:

  • decision making;
  • speed;
  • new ventures;
  • entrepreneurship

Abstract

This study helps to explain why some new ventures make strategic decisions more quickly than others. Drawing on life course theory and human capital theory, I develop a model of how entrepreneurs' individual characteristics affect new venture decision speed. I test the model using survey data from 98 Internet startups and their founder/managers. Results show that firms made faster decisions when they were managed by older entrepreneurs and by those with prior entrepreneurial experience. In addition, exploratory analyses indicating that fast decision-making firms were more likely to close may indicate that prevailing theory in this area is contextually limited. Copyright © 2005 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.