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Article
Publication date: 1 October 1999

Ken Grant and David W. Cravens

Examines the impact of manager and salesforce antecedents on sales organization effectiveness, using a sample of 146 Australian sales units. Indicates that sales manager…

2523

Abstract

Examines the impact of manager and salesforce antecedents on sales organization effectiveness, using a sample of 146 Australian sales units. Indicates that sales manager monitoring, directing, evaluating and rewarding activities distinguish between high and low sales unit profitability and managers’ satisfaction with their units. Suggests that sales territory design displays significant differences between high and low sales/market share and unit satisfaction. Discovers that several salesperson characteristics and performance were significantly different between high and low customer satisfaction effectiveness and managers’ satisfaction with sales units. Highlights significant antecedent roles for sales manager and salesforce antecedents of sales organization effectiveness.

Details

European Journal of Marketing, vol. 33 no. 9/10
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0309-0566

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 1 March 1997

Nigel F. Piercy, David W. Cravens and Neil A. Morgan

The significance of the search for sales organization effectiveness is underlined by the major costs represented by the field salesforce for many organizations, and it is…

5431

Abstract

The significance of the search for sales organization effectiveness is underlined by the major costs represented by the field salesforce for many organizations, and it is heightened by the pressures of global competition and new challenges to develop long‐term customer relationships as the foundation for competitive and sustainable marketing strategies. A study of sales management in British companies adds to an emerging research stream by identifying certain characteristics of superior performance and effectiveness in the business‐to‐business sales organization. We find that conventional measures of salesforce size, call‐rates, costs and productivity reveal relatively little about the differences between more effective and less effective sales organizations and may be dangerously misleading. The hallmarks of effective sales organizations we found to be: balanced compensation strategy; successful salesperson characteristics, in terms of motivation, customer orientation, team orientation, and sales support orientation; high performance in the drivers of sales effectiveness, i.e. sales presentation, technical knowledge, but most particularly adaptiveness, teamwork, sales planning, and sales support; the use of behaviour‐based control approaches involving effective monitoring, directing, evaluating and rewarding activities by sales managers; and, sound organizational structures. The research findings contribute benchmarks to a powerful management agenda to be addressed by executives in pursuing sales organization effectiveness.

Details

Journal of Marketing Practice: Applied Marketing Science, vol. 3 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1355-2538

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 11 March 2020

Joel Mier, Jeffrey Carlson, Danny Norton Bellenger and Wesley J. Johnston

Drawing from the contingency model, this study aims to investigate the moderating effects of business-to-business (B2B) buyer personal characteristics on the relationship…

Abstract

Purpose

Drawing from the contingency model, this study aims to investigate the moderating effects of business-to-business (B2B) buyer personal characteristics on the relationship between sales activities and sales effectiveness.

Design/methodology/approach

As an application of engaged scholarship, this study leverages a years’ worth of sales activity and results from a Fortune 500 financial services company for 2,710 dyads; personal characteristics (i.e. geodemographics) were appended for the customers/prospects of the dyads. The data was analyzed with hierarchical regression, and subgroups were tested using the Chow test.

Findings

The results support that geodemographic segments – as a proxy for personal characteristics – moderate the strength of the relationship between selling activities and sales effectiveness. Overall, the results demonstrate that selling activities have varying impacts on sales effectiveness within geodemographic segments and buyclass scenarios.

Practical implications

While it has been long held that understanding the personal characteristics of the B2B purchasing decision-maker is critical for sales effectiveness, little guidance has been provided on how to accomplish this to scale. The present study provides a framework and process for practitioner operationalization.

Originality/value

This research contributes to the literature that has explored personal characteristics of buying center members. Additionally, the results suggest that personal characteristics of the purchase decision-maker may transcend business-to-consumer and B2B purchasing contexts.

Details

Journal of Business & Industrial Marketing, vol. 35 no. 10
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0885-8624

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 17 October 2008

Inés Küster and Pedro Canales

This paper aims to find out what characterises salespeople in the most effective salesforce in Spain.

2812

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to find out what characterises salespeople in the most effective salesforce in Spain.

Design/methodology/approach

An empirical analysis has been done with 108 field sales managers from different sectors of activity to determine the conditions of the salesperson's control, professionalism and behaviour that affect his/her performance and the effectiveness of companies. A structural equations model or second generation multivariate model was used – PLS.

Findings

The results show that more effective salesforces are controlled through behaviour control systems, salespersons in this team identify with the company's strategic objectives and an important part of their remuneration is based on a fixed salary.

Research limitations/implications

First, the information has been gathered on a unique hierarchical level – team managers. Second, the company's activity sector and the type of salesperson can modify the results. Finally, the size of the sample has limited the potential application of specific statistical techniques and even the generalisation of the results.

Practical implications

Field sales managers must help to define the salespeople's tasks to reach the company's objectives in the most effective way. This situation implies, logically, that control is exerted over behaviour and to a lesser extent over the results achieved by the salesperson.

Originality/value

The paper determines those variables which allow companies, and especially those persons holding responsibility in the salesforce, to increase their effectiveness. The objective enriches the knowledge on sales effectiveness and also applies, in the Spanish case, a study methodology that has been applied in other countries.

Details

Team Performance Management: An International Journal, vol. 14 no. 7/8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1352-7592

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 1 December 2002

Artur Baldauf and David W. Cravens

Salesperson behavior performance is conceptualized as a predictor of outcome performance and sales organization effectiveness. The research considers the effects of…

4893

Abstract

Salesperson behavior performance is conceptualized as a predictor of outcome performance and sales organization effectiveness. The research considers the effects of salesperson capabilities, industrial/consumer products, and industry growth moderators on salesperson performance and sales organization effectiveness relationships. Empirical analyses are conducted using data from a sample of 174 field sales managers in Austrian sales organizations. The results of moderator regression analyses indicate that salesperson capabilities, product type, and industry growth are relevant moderators. The roles of the moderators vary across the relationships analyzed. Several management and research implications are examined.

Details

European Journal of Marketing, vol. 36 no. 11/12
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0309-0566

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 26 February 2019

Amitabh Deo Kodwani and Sanjeev Prashar

The purpose of this paper is to decipher the possibility of ensuring the effectiveness of sales training by focusing on selected organization-related variables and…

1312

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to decipher the possibility of ensuring the effectiveness of sales training by focusing on selected organization-related variables and thereafter aims at making recommendations for enhancing the overall sales training effectiveness. Variables that are under organizations’ control, like training transfer climate, training evaluation and degree of choice (mandatory or by choice) were selected for this study. The study also attempted to understand how these variables influence at pre-training stage and post-training stage.

Design/methodology/approach

This cross-sectional research involved both exploratory and conclusive phases. To test the postulated hypotheses, data were collected in two phases from sales executives of a large oil and gas petrochemical company having the presence across India. A total of 370 sales executives, who were the part of a sales training program, were approached twice, one before the training and once after the eight weeks of training. Data from the respondents who completed both pre- and post-training survey (255) were used for analyses.

Findings

The results indicate that all the three predictor variables – training awareness, perceived transfer climate and the presence of an appropriate training evaluation mechanism, influence trainees’ motivation to learn. The results depict that motivation to learn mediates the association between the predictor variables and the resultant variable. Also, degree of choice was found to moderate the association between motivation to learn and sales training effectiveness. The research reinforces the significance of pre-training factors in designing sales training programs to ensure its better effectiveness.

Research limitations/implications

The present study captures organizational-level variables as they are under the control of the organization and can be managed. The study included both motivation to learn and training effectiveness in the hypothesized model to understand the motivational issues in a holistic perspective. The outcomes of this research strengthen the role of trainees’ motivation to learn as a connecting variable between organizational-level variables and sales training effectiveness. Thus, the outcome of this study contributes to the literature on training motivation as well as training effectiveness.

Practical implications

The findings of this study are significant for sales organizations or the organizations offering sales training aiming to enhance overall training effectiveness. Training managers must focus on these factors and ensure that all the pre-training organizational-level variables are very well-taken care of. This implies that the trainees need to be well informed about the training calendar, training policies, training content, expectations from them and how the program will be evaluated after training, along with appropriate positive transfer climate. Organizations should also include proper training evaluation mechanism to measure training at different levels.

Originality/value

This study is an attempt to decipher the possibility of ensuring the effectiveness of sales training by focusing on select organization-related variables, and thereafter aims at making recommendations for enhancing the overall sales training effectiveness. The study’s uniqueness lies in simultaneous examination of influence of various variables, and that too at two different points of time (before and after the training). These two perspectives are apparently missing in the existing sales training literature.

Details

Benchmarking: An International Journal, vol. 26 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1463-5771

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 1 December 2002

Nigel F. Piercy, Nikala Lane and David W. Cravens

Organizational citizenship behaviour (OCB) is discretionary employee behaviour that promotes organizational effectiveness, and has become recognized as an issue of…

9465

Abstract

Organizational citizenship behaviour (OCB) is discretionary employee behaviour that promotes organizational effectiveness, and has become recognized as an issue of potentially substantial importance in the management of sales operations. Identifies sales management control strategy as an important antecedent to salesperson OCB, which has been neglected in prior OCB research. Uncovers an important gender dimension in the display of OCB by salespeople, not previously investigated, and identifies an important relationship between sales manager gender and the OCB displayed by a sales unit or team, which is associated with the effectiveness of the sales unit. The findings have a number of important implications for managers concerned with enhancing sales organization effectiveness, as well as identifying a number of promising research directions.

Details

Women in Management Review, vol. 17 no. 8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0964-9425

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 24 August 2021

Yaqin Zheng, Dong Liu, Yi Zheng and Zhimei Zang

This study aims to investigate moderators affecting the impact of salesperson acquisition-retention (AR) ambidexterity on sales performance based on the…

Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to investigate moderators affecting the impact of salesperson acquisition-retention (AR) ambidexterity on sales performance based on the motivation-opportunity-ability (MOA) framework.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors collected triadic data through 391 questionnaires from salespeople, 50 questionnaires from sales managers and archival data about each salesperson’s performance. Hierarchical linear modeling was applied to test the hypotheses.

Findings

The results indicate that salesperson AR ambidexterity positively affects sales performance. The positive effect is strengthened by capability control but weakened by outcome control and activity control. The authors also find that sales experience and market attractiveness hurt the effectiveness of salesperson AR ambidexterity.

Research limitations/implications

First, this study does not examine the mediating mechanism underlying the effect of salesperson AR ambidexterity. Second, sales-service ambidexterity is another ambidextrous variable for salespeople. Future research can consider AR and sales-service ambidexterity together.

Practical implications

First, managers should be cautious when encouraging experienced salespeople to conduct AR ambidexterity. Second, managers need to use capability control to motivate salespeople with AR ambidextrous behaviors. Third, AR ambidexterity could be not required in a market with many opportunities.

Originality/value

Although some studies have examined the effectiveness of salesperson AR ambidexterity, they reveal inconsistent findings, which suggest contingent conditions on the effectiveness of salesperson AR ambidexterity. However, the attention on the contingent conditions is limited. Therefore, this paper systematically investigates the contingent conditions from the MOA framework. The findings provide some insights into when salesperson AR ambidexterity is effective.

Details

Journal of Business & Industrial Marketing, vol. 37 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0885-8624

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 9 October 2009

Ronald Zallocco, Ellen Bolman Pullins and Michael L. Mallin

The purpose of this paper is to contribute to the understanding of sales performance measurement by developing an organizing framework for classifying sales performance…

5500

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to contribute to the understanding of sales performance measurement by developing an organizing framework for classifying sales performance measures based on the various performance criteria used by researchers. Subsequently, the results of both a focus group and in‐depth interviews with sales managers and salespeople will be presented using the classification framework developed. The objective is to determine whether gaps exist between how researchers and practitioners view and classify salesperson performance measures as well as to provide insights to effective sales management practices in areas such as salesperson skill development, goal attainment, resource allocation, and customer relationship management.

Design/methodology/approach

A qualitative study, using in‐depth interviews, explores the relationship between sales managers and salespersons and their respective views on sales performance measurement. The interview questions were developed using information derived from a sales executive focus group. In‐person in‐depth interviews were conducted with eight sales managers and eight salespeople from eight organizations.

Findings

The paper proposes a new method for organizing the types of performance measures that are used, crossing effectiveness‐efficiency with internally‐externally‐focused measures. The findings indicate that a gap appears to remain between the attributes of performance that researchers focus on and what occurs in the world of sales.

Research limitations/implications

The findings suggest that sales control theories can be used to present an organizing framework of sales performance based on sales outputs, salesperson skill/capability development, sales activities, and market indicators. Our typology might serve as a way to better understand certain research areas where there have been inconsistent findings, and should lead to new measure development for empirical research. In addition, a number of manager and salesperson recommendations for the practicing sales manager are reviewed.

Originality/value

This paper helps to clarify an area that is characterized by ambiguity and an identified need to identify new performance metrics.

Details

Journal of Business & Industrial Marketing, vol. 24 no. 8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0885-8624

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 24 July 2009

Nicholas G. Paparoidamis and Paolo Guenzi

This study aims to develop and test a model of relationship selling management. It seeks to examine the impact of leadership quality and relationship selling, as…

3648

Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to develop and test a model of relationship selling management. It seeks to examine the impact of leadership quality and relationship selling, as antecedents of salespeople's relational behaviours, on sales effectiveness.

Design/methodology/approach

Starting from a review of literature, the model incorporates two classes of salespeople's relational behaviours, namely customer‐oriented selling (COS) and adaptive selling (AS), two classes of managerial antecedents (i.e. relationship selling strategy and LMX) and one consequence (sales effectiveness). The authors collected data from 164 sales manager‐salesperson dyads in a sample of French firms. A structural equation modelling approach was employed to test the hypotheses.

Findings

The findings show that relationship selling and LMX stimulate salespeople's relational behaviours, which in turn positively affect sales effectiveness. Moreover, the results reveal a positive impact of relationship selling on sales manager‐salesperson exchanges.

Research limitations/implications

The study is cross‐sectional, and many other relevant constructs should be investigated in future research on the topic. Objective measures of performance may also be incorporated.

Practical implications

The study demonstrates that companies can stimulate desirable behaviours of salespeople, which drive to better performance, by leveraging on controllable organisational factors, i.e. selling strategy and leadership.

Originality/value

The research fills three important gaps in the extant literature. First of all, the study clearly sheds some light on the role played by specific organisational variables (e.g. leader‐member exchange quality) and behaviours of salespeople in implementing relational strategies. Second, the study shows that the quality of the relationship between supervisors and salespeople can affect specific behaviours of subordinates. Third, the paper contributes to a better understanding of organisational drivers of customer‐oriented selling and adaptive selling, and finds evidence of a positive impact of such behaviours on sales effectiveness.

Details

European Journal of Marketing, vol. 43 no. 7/8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0309-0566

Keywords

1 – 10 of over 42000