The purpose of this research study was to discover the most influential narrative strategies and practices that entrepreneurial leaders use to gain internal and external stakeholder support for the creation, growth, and sustenance of their business ventures. The Delphi research method was chosen for its investigative approach, which structures a group communication process so that experts from a community of interest can provide input and reach a consensus on a complex phenomenon (Linstone & Turoff, 1975). The findings in this Delphi study were based on the perceptions and opinions of an expert panel of 31 entrepreneurial leaders representing diverse industries and occupations throughout the United States. The Delphi study featured three separate rounds of a cross-sectional survey (Babbie, 1990), from which data was gathered through a secure, custom website. The primary result of this Delphi study was the identification of seven best practices, which enjoyed the highest consensus from the expert panel, and provided insight into the question of how entrepreneurs use narrative to influence their stakeholders in business presentations. The secondary result of the study was the discovery of how narrative practices and styles may tend to vary among different entrepreneurial types and demographic groups. From the discovery and consensus around the seven best practices, a new narrative framework was introduced, which provides insight and support for future entrepreneurial leaders seeking to influence stakeholders in the process of creating and growing their business ventures.
|Adviser||Nancy S. Bostain|
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