Exploring salesperson learning in the client relationship nexus

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Title: Exploring salesperson learning in the client relationship nexus
Authors: Turley, Darach
Geiger, Susi
Permanent link: http://hdl.handle.net/10197/5366
Date: Jun-2006
Abstract: Purpose - This paper aims to investigate the characteristics and parameters of salesperson learning within client relationships, thereby filling a noticeable gap in the knowledge of individual learning in a sales context. It also aims at advancing the discussion on the nature of learning and knowledge in sales and marketing.. Design/methodology/approach - A grounded theory approach is used to investigate salesperson learning in a relational context. Data collection methods include interviews with 36 business-to-business sales personnel, reflexive exercises and field observations.. Findings - The investigation shows that salesperson relational learning is personal, that it occurs in action, that it is contextual, natural, open-ended, and often unconscious. Antecedents of learning are personal dispositions such as openness to changing contexts and situated learning mechanisms; consequences of relational learning are personal methods of knowledge transfer as well as the transformation of the learner and the client relationship. Thus, a framework of salesperson relational learning is proposed.. Practical implications - Sales managers should emphasise the continuity of learning, train people in situ and minimise turnover of sales personnel. They might also do well to acknowledge how these alternative modes can complement traditional, more formal sales management methods.. Originality/value - This paper presents a grounded model that aids both researchers and practitioners in understanding salesperson learning in client relationships, thus advancing a new theoretical perspective on learning in sales and marketing..
Type of material: Journal Article
Publisher: Emerald
Copyright (published version): 2006 Emerald
Keywords: Salesperson learning;Relationship selling;Grounded theory;Situated learning
DOI: 10.1108/03090560610657886
Language: en
Status of Item: Peer reviewed
Appears in Collections:Business Research Collection

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