This study aims at identifying and exploring patterns between the composition of top management teams and their strategic sensemaking. Due to the explorative nature of the research question, and the objective to study the phenomenon of top management team sensemaking in its natural setting, the empirical part of this study is based on a multiple-case study design.239 The ten cases were chosen according to theoretical replication logic: the researchers started with surveying and interviewing the first team, analyzed the case to establish first propositions, and then collected data from the next team to check and further develop the propositions. When feeling comfortable with the patterns, the researchers started to vary the organizational size, ownership situation, and involvement of the owner in the management of the organization to analyze how these organizational factors might change the propositions. Two researchers collected data from each team member of the selected teams. They collected data by means of questionnaires and interviews. The questionnaires contained questions about the demographic and personality background of each team member as well as about the team culture and the team’s sensemaking. The strategic sensemaking of the team was further studied by interviewing each team member. To determine the number of cases, the researchers used theoretical sampling. The researchers stopped collecting data as soon as the emerging theoretical model became sound and the incremental learnings from additional cases diminished.240


Team Member Case Study Research Team Level Team Composition Interview Partner 
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© Deutscher Universitäts-Verlag | GWV Fachverlage GmbH, Wiesbaden 2007

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