The Ambidextrous Sales Force: Aligning Salesperson Polychronicity and Selling Contexts for Sales-Service Behaviors and Customer Value
While many firms are increasing salespeople’s service expectations alongside selling responsibilities, evidence suggests this strategy is difficult to implement. Yet research addressing this challenge for dual-role sales forces is limited. Utilizing matched, dyadic (salesperson-customer) data from business-to-business (B2B) selling firms across industries, we investigate the drivers and value-creation impact of salespeople tasked with performing sales and service activities—termed sales-service ambidextrous (SSA) behaviors. Given the importance of job fit in professional selling, we build from trait activation theory to identify salespeople’s preference for switching between multiple tasks within the same time period (i.e., polychronicity) as a key driver critical for enacting SSA behavior. Further, we illustrate contexts (i.e., task, social, and organizational) impacting the extent polychronic salespeople perform SSA behaviors. We also provide evidence that ambidextrous salespeople create increased value to customers through customers’ willingness to pay a price premium. Together, these findings help illustrate the practical considerations sales leaders should consider before initiating a dual-role sales force approach.
figshare SAGE Publications
Agnihotri, Raj; Hall, Zachary; Mullins, Ryan (2019), "The Ambidextrous Sales Force: Aligning Salesperson Polychronicity and Selling Contexts for Sales-Service Behaviors and Customer Value", figshare SAGE Publications, doi: 10.25384/sage.c.4714586.v1