This paper examines the role of trust in the process of learning and acquisition of knowledge by high technology entrepreneurs in their relationship with external directors. It examines the literature on organisational learning which showed the importance of social agency and trust as necessary elements of learning and knowledge management. In particular it identified dimensions linked to trust in competence of external advisers, situations of crisis and the necessity of trust but also the development of trust fostered by group identification. The paper also examines the literature on external directors to show that as open systems they present an appropriate case for investigating the dimensions of trust pertaining to knowledge and learning. The overall findings are that trust and relationships have an impact on the process of learning. In particular it was found that external directors have competence which brings value added benefits to growing small firms. It was also found that trust in situations of crisis was required. Finally, the long‐term involvement and the development of relationships between external directors and entrepreneurs fostered group values and trust based identification.
Boussouara, M. and Deakins, D. (2000), "Trust and the acquisition of knowledge from non‐executive directors by high technology entrepreneurs", International Journal of Entrepreneurial Behavior & Research, Vol. 6 No. 4, pp. 204-226. https://doi.org/10.1108/13552550010354948
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