An experiment exploring the effects of team composition on the acquisition and retention of team performance and cognitive skill is reported. Team performance was measured in the context of photographing ground targets in an unmanned aerial vehicle synthetic task environment. Team process was taken as a measure of team cognition. Experimental results include the findings that team mixing and longer retention intervals have a short lived deleterious effect on team performance immediately after the interval, while team mixing has a positive effect on team process after the interval. These findings suggest that changes in team composition and retention interval can lead to improvements in team cognition if a brief decrement in team performance post-interval can be afforded. These results are interpreted as perturbation of established coordination patterns due to team mixing leading to more flexible and adaptive teams. Implications for process-oriented research are also considered.