Head shot of Trent Williams

Trent Williams

Associate Professor of Entrepreneurship,
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Website: https://scholar.google.com/citations?user=oWmwx8gAAAAJ&hl=en

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Trent Williams is an Associate Professor of Entrepreneurship. Prior to joining BYU, he held similar positions at the Kelley School of Business at Indiana University and the Whitman School of Management at Syracuse University. He obtained a BA in English and Philosophy from BYU, MS in OBHR / Strategic management from the Krannert School of Management (Purdue University), and an MS in Business and PhD in Entrepreneurship and Strategy at the Kelley School of Business (Indiana University). Prior to his career in academia, Trent worked with two startup firms before a career in management consulting with Deloitte Consulting and then PwC Advisory. His consulting work focused on facilitating corporate strategy processes and solutions, launching products / services as part of a corporate differentiation strategy (i.e., corporate entrepreneurship), and strategy implementation. These experiences shaped his interest in the tensions organizations (new and old) face in maximizing value from existing successes while simultaneously seeking to renew and improve organizations into the future.

Trent's academic career has focused predominantly on new venture emergence and creation processes, innovation, and social-psychological factors influencing entrepreneurial decision making. His research resides at the intersection of entrepreneurship and organization theories and focuses on community-organization emergence, value (social, environmental, and economic) from venturing, decision-making, venture growth / survival tradeoffs, resourcefulness, and resilience. His work as appeared in a variety of management and entrepreneurship journals (e.g., Academy of Management Journal, Academy of Management Review, Journal of Business Venturing, Organization Science, Entrepreneurship Theory & Practice, Journal of Management, Strategic Entrepreneurship Journal, Academy of Management Annals, etc.) and books (MIT Press; CambridgeUniversity Press).

Trent has taught MBA, Executive MBA, and Undergraduate business classes and has also done consulting in helping organizations plan for and deliver rapid innovation processes through design sprints. He has taught courses and run workshops on the following topics: Design sprints for rapid innovation development, entrepreneurship, new venture strategies (launch, professionalize, pivot, grow, exit, etc.), business and corporate strategy, decision making under uncertainty, and strategies for organizational innovation and renewal.

Selected Publications

  • "Resilience within constraints: An event-oriented approach to crisis response", Journal of Management, 2023
  • "Adapting a collective will and a way during a civil war: The persistence of an entrepreneurial ecosystem as an architecture of hope", Journal of Business Venturing, 2023
  • "Progress without a venture? Individual benefits of post-disruption entrepreneuring", Journal of Business Venturing, Volume 38, 2023
  • "Reframing Social Entrepreneurship Research: Embracing a Strategic Perspective", Strategic Entrepreneurship Journal, 2023
  • "Does it need to be broader or deeper? Trade-offs in entrepreneurship theorizing", Entrepreneurship Theory & Practice, 2022
  • "Micro-foundations of institutional logic shifts: Entrepreneurial action in response to crises", Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Business and Management, Oxford University Press, 2022
  • "Organizing the exploitation of vulnerable people: A qualitative assessment of human trafficking", Journal of Management, Volume 48, 2022
  • "Ruminating on what you think of me: A grounded model of construed image work", Academy of Management Journal, Volume 65, 2022
  • "“Integrating psychological resilience, stress and coping in entrepreneurship: A systematic review and research agenda.”", Entrepreneurship Theory & Practice, Volume 46, 2022
  • "Bounding and Binding: Trajectories of Community-Organization Emergence Following a Major Disruption", Organization Science, 2021
  • "Breaking boundaries to creatively generate value: The role of resourcefulness in entrepreneurship", Journal of Business Venturing, 2021
  • "Beyond Hybridity: Accounting for the Values Complexity of All Organizations in the Study of Mission and Mission Drift", Academy of Management Review, Volume 45, 2020
  • "Entrepreneurship responding to adversity: Equilibrating adverse events and disequilibrating persistent adversity", Organization Theory, Volume 1, 2020
  • "A framework for exploring the degree of hybridity in entrepreneurship", Academy of Management Perspectives, 2019
  • "Anchors aweigh: The sources, variety, and challenges of mission drift", Academy of Management Review, Volume 44, 2019
  • "Spontaneous venturing: An entrepreneurial approach to alleviating suffering in the aftermath of a disaster", MIT Press, Cambridge, MA, 2019
  • "Hitting rock bottom after job loss: Bouncing back to create a new positive work identity", Academy of Management Review, Volume 43, 2018
  • "Organizational response to adversity: Fusing crisis management and resilience research streams", Academy of Management Annals, Edition 2, Volume 11, 2017
  • "Building resilience or providing sustenance: Different paths of emergent ventures in the aftermath of the Haiti earthquake", Academy of Management Journal, Edition 6, Volume 59, 2016
  • "Learning from Entrepreneurial Failure: Emotions, Cognitions, and Actions", No, Cambridge University Press, 2016


  • Academy of Management Journal best paper top 10 finalist, Academy of Management Journal, 2023
  • Kelley School of Business Research Award, Kelley School of Business--Indiana University, 2022
  • Trustees Teaching Award Nominee, Kelley School of Business-Indiana University, 2022
  • Poets and Quants 40 under 40 Award, Poets & Quants, 2021
  • Best Paper Award, Babson College Entrepreneurship Research Conference, 2020
  • Emerging Scholar Award, AOM Entrepreneurship Division, 2019
  • Responsible Research in Management Presidential Award Winner, IACMR, 2019
  • Eyster Teaching Award, Kelley School of Business-Kelley School of Business, Indiana University, 2018
  • Whitman Diversity and Inclusion Research Grant Award, Syracuse University Whitman School of Management, 2018
  • Best Paper Award Winner, International Association for Chinese Management Research, 2017
  • Finalist--TUM Research Excellence Award in Innovation, Entrepreneurship, and Leadership, Technical University of Munich (TUM) and the Peter Pribilla Foundation, 2017
  • Best Professor and Graduation Marshall, Whitman School of Management Graduate Defense Comptrollership Program, 2015
  • Guttag Junior Faculty Award, Whitman School of Management, Syracuse University, 2015


  • French

Professional Citizenship

  • Entrepreneurship Theory & Practice Journal, Editor, Associate Editor, 2021–2029
  • Journal of Business Venturing, Editorial Review Board Member, August 2017–2028
  • Academy of Management Review, Editorial Review Board Member, 2023–2026
  • Academy of Management Journal, Editorial Review Board Member, 2022–2025
  • Strategic Entrepreneurship Journal, Editor, Associate Editor, 2019–2023
  • Journal of Business Venturing, Editor, Associate Editor, 2017–2021