Online from: 1986
Subject Area: Marketing
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|Title:||Determinants of B2B salespersons' performance and effectiveness: a review and synthesis of literature|
|Author(s):||Ramendra Singh, (Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad, India), Abraham Koshy, (Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad, India)|
|Citation:||Ramendra Singh, Abraham Koshy, (2010) "Determinants of B2B salespersons' performance and effectiveness: a review and synthesis of literature", Journal of Business & Industrial Marketing, Vol. 25 Iss: 7, pp.535 - 546|
|Keywords:||Customer orientation, Sales force, Sales performance|
|Article type:||Literature review|
|DOI:||10.1108/08858621011077763 (Permanent URL)|
|Publisher:||Emerald Group Publishing Limited|
|Acknowledgements:||The authors would like to thank the two anonymous journal reviewers for their excellent suggestions to improve some of the conceptualizations in this paper. Received: August 2008. Revised: April 2009. Accepted: July 2009.|
Purpose – Review articles on B2B salespersons' performance in the recent past have been limited. This paper seeks to provide a review, focusing on the conceptualizations of the salespersons' performance construct, and its determinants, in a B2B context. A synthesis of the relevant predictors is presented, and new customer-centric measures of performance in industrial selling are also proposed.
Design/methodology/approach – The paper provides an exhaustive review and synthesis of the conceptual and empirical studies on salespersons' performance and effectiveness. It also posits a set of propositions from a customer-centric perspective.
Findings – Far too many individual-level variables are used as predictors of a B2B salesperson's performance and effectiveness. Future research must focus on context-specific selling situations to identify the contextual skills required to perform the critical customer-centric activities, rather than by using generic models that fail to apply to all situations.
Research limitations/implications – The review paper provides a conceptual synthesis of studies carried out in the past. Future researchers can carry out a meta-analysis of empirical studies to provide more pointed results.
Practical implications – The study highlights the heterogeneity in B2B salespersons' performance, which makes unraveling its determinants more difficult. The paper makes a call for adopting measures that are customer-centric, such that predictors are anchored in the activities of salespeople rather than their individual-level characteristics.
Originality/value – The paper disentangles the inconsistencies in the conceptualization and measurement of the two key focal constructs, and highlights the conceptual overlap between these constructs. The paper also proposes performance measures based on customer-centric activities, rather than being either firm-centric or based on individual characteristics.
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