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When and how sales manager feedback contributes to sales performance: the role of emotional labor and cross-selling

Yuhyung Shin (School of Business, Hanyang University, Seoul, Republic of Korea)
Won-Moo Hur (College of Business Administration, Inha University, Incheon, Republic of Korea)
Tae Won Moon (School of Business Administration, Hongik University, Seoul, Republic of Korea)

European Journal of Marketing

ISSN: 0309-0566

Article publication date: 4 January 2023

Issue publication date: 17 January 2023




This study aims to test the mediating effect of cross-selling behavior (CSB) on the relationship between sales manager feedback (i.e. output and behavioral) and sales performance, and the moderating effect of emotional labor (i.e. deep and surface acting) on this relationship.


The authors used two-wave multisource data: survey and objective sales performance (sales revenue) data collected from 300 door-to-door salespeople working at a South Korean cosmetics company.


The relationship between output feedback and sales performance was mediated by CSB. In addition, the positive relationship between output feedback and CSB was weakened by deep and surface acting, whereas that between behavioral feedback and CSB was strengthened by deep acting. Specifically, behavioral feedback had a positive relationship with CSB when salespeople engaged in a high level of deep acting. This relationship was not significant for low and medium levels of deep acting. The authors’ supplementary analyses indicated no significant three-way interaction effect between output feedback, behavioral feedback and emotional labor on CSB.

Research limitations/implications

Data collection from door-to-door salespeople in a single cosmetics company undermines the generalizability of the present findings.

Practical implications

By exploring the boundary conditions that strengthen or weaken the effectiveness of manager feedback, this study provides insights into how the two types of manager feedback can be effectively used to promote CSB and sales performance.


This study offers a nuanced understanding of the relative roles of output and behavioral feedback in CSB and the differential moderating effects of emotional labor on the two types of manager feedback.



Funding: This work was supported by the Ministry of Education of the Republic of Korea and the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF-2018S1A5A2A01033768).


Shin, Y., Hur, W.-M. and Moon, T.W. (2023), "When and how sales manager feedback contributes to sales performance: the role of emotional labor and cross-selling", European Journal of Marketing, Vol. 57 No. 2, pp. 599-625.



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