Salesforce responsive roles in turbulent times: case studies in agility selling


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Bourguignon, Benoit ORCID logoORCID:, Boeck, Harold et Brashear Alejandro, Thomas (2021). Salesforce responsive roles in turbulent times: case studies in agility selling. Journal of Business & Industrial Marketing . doi:10.1108/JBIM-01-2020-0010 Repéré dans Depositum à

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Salespeople are at the forefront of the external environment where they act as the first responders to critical events and their resulting business turbulence. How the salesforce responds to turbulence is, therefore, of great interest both theoretically and in practice. The paper aims to rekindle interest in agility selling, which is the most adequate behavioral sales model to exploit environmental uncertainty.

An organizational autoethnography complemented with data from in-depth interviews with key salespeople involved in turbulence resulted in the development of eight case studies.

Salespeople use agility selling through four possible responsive roles. They amplify, innovate, cooperate or mitigate turbulence to exploit its ensuing opportunity or minimize its negative effect for both the supplier and the customer. The article enhances the agility selling model by putting three core abilities in the forefront: (1) forecasting turbulence from critical events, (2) responding to changes quickly and adequately and (3) exploiting changes as opportunities.

Research limitations/implications
The article argues that critical events are the cause of the turbulence that the salesforce must deal with before it hits the dyad. Agility selling represents an untapped research opportunity in business-to-business sales, and sales management, as well as within the overall agile organization.

Practical implications
Sales organizations would greatly benefit in implementing training of agility selling’s core abilities because responsiveness is a valuable tool for salespeople in times of turbulence.

The study is the first to empirically demonstrate the existence of agility selling.

Type de document: Article
Informations complémentaires: Cette version de l'article représente le manuscrit final accepté pour publication (postpublication). La version officielle a été publiée dans la revue Journal of Business & Industrial Marketing (2021) :
Mots-clés libres: Buyer-seller relationship, adaptative techniques, problem solving, decision making, sales strategies, packaging industry
Divisions: Gestion
Date de dépôt: 06 août 2021 15:44
Dernière modification: 13 mars 2023 17:51

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