It is possible to formulate a successful company wide marketing strategy during changing markets. A strategy that assists company decision makers in implementing a completely brand new way of conducting business that will conclude with positive results from all those involved.
I found this idea very interesting as I assumed that the employees would automatically be more interested in their financial well-being than their feelings. It was nice to learn through a research article written by three professors, one from Boise State University and two from Georgia Institute of Technology, that how we treat people is still very important and plays a higher role than the almighty dollar.
Research Based Anaylisis
Their research is based primarily on an independent study, textual analysis, and they referenced stress theory.
The researchers had a company that was embarking on a brand new journey of transitioning their salespeople from in person transactions to online transactions. This transition has the potential of greatly improving the overall profit while increasing the customer base of the company while dissolving the individual salesperson’s commission earning opportunity and potentially their very jobs. In order to complete this transition with the smallest amount of degradation the company is open to guidance from these researchers.
The researchers plan to discover through this study if they can properly formulate a system to help the company decision makers implement a well-received plan and conclude with positive actions from all those involved. The researchers focus on working directly with sales supervisors to learn how effective they are when implementing a strategic change with their salespeople.
The emphasis of this study also includes studying the stress level of the salespeople according to the stress theory developed by Lazarus in 1980 and Lazarus and Folkman in 1984. The researchers believe There is a Primary appraisal and a Secondary appraisal that each salesperson will conduct when faced with the strategic change mandated by their supervisors.
The Primary appraisal evaluates the event’s impact on the salespersons well-being while the Secondary appraisal evaluates the salespersons ability to cope with the event’s impact on them by considering their personal, social, economic, and organization resources. This means each person will be trying to figure out if they can emotionally, mentally, and physically handle the changes being asked of them while also trying to figure out if they will be required to make these changes with or without assistance from their supervisors, if this will hurt their pocketbook since this probably gets rid of their commissions and is this something they are still interested in being a part of.
The researchers come up with eleven hypotheses of what they believe will happen throughout the course of the transition and the results are supportive that the company must enable the supervisors to provide the salespeople with the confidence that they are not alone, they will receive all necessary training, their commission will be replaced with a financial bonus or raise, and they are a very important part of this process.
The researchers found that salespeople with a higher performance orientation based on their desire to improve based upon metrics that others consider important are more responsive to the newly designed rewards system.
They also found that salespeople responded well to the organized structure of outcome risk containment, outcome reward emphasis, process risk containment, and process reward emphasis for their Primary appraisal. However, they preferred more emphasis on outcome risk containment than outcome reward emphasis in regards to their Secondary appraisal since “loss avoidance looms larger than gain seeking.”
Sarin, Shikhar., Challagalla, Goutam., and Kohli, Ajay K. “Implementing Changes in Marketing Strategy: The Role of Perceived Outcome and Process-Oriented Supervisory Actions”. Journal of Marketing Research, (2012), 49(4), 564-580.