This paper identifies certain conditions under which novice staff can outperform senior accountants when they work as part of a team to complete a configural processing task. As a general practice, task components are often delegated to individual team members to enhance the efficiency of teamwork. However, this practice also promotes the tendency for members to complete work autonomously which may prevent the team from identifying the optimal decision when interrelated information is distributed throughout the team. In this study, I find that a brainstorming session enhances team communication throughout subsequent tasks and encourages the team to process information jointly rather than as individuals. I further find that hierarchical dyads (i.e., one senior working with one staff accountant) outperform dyads comprised of peers (i.e., two seniors) despite the fact that members of the peer dyads have greater domain- and task-specific experience. In accordance with the Functional Leadership Theory, I find the greatest performance is achieved by hierarchical teams that have conducted a brainstorming session. The hierarchical team structure prompts the senior accountant to assume greater responsibility for the task while the brainstorming session facilitates communication within the team, enabling the senior to identify and fulfill the critical teamwork functions functions of information seeking, monitoring, and coordination.