Marketing Essay

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Managing Emotions Among Salespersons

Personal selling is a very dynamic line of work and the ability of a salesperson to manage their emotion is very important. This research will look at the role salespeople's ability to manage their emotion has on their performance and behavior. It will bring to light an emotion regulation strategy which is adaptive for the management of negative emotions. A conceptual framework will be built to bring to light the place of cognitive reappraisal on the emotional well-being of salespeople as well as their motivation. The expected results are that there is a positive relation between adaptive selling behavior and cognitive reappraisal. Moreover, there is a negative relationship between cognitive reappraisal and emotional exhaustion and ruminative implications (Kemp et al., 2012).


Salespeople operate in an environment with fluctuating stress levels. They have to play various role patterns and this subjects them to more than average stress levels (Naletelich et al. 2014). Studies in this area have mainly looked at the emotions that present themselves in a sales encounter. Not much has been done, however, in looking at how salespeople manage their emotions during the day-to-day work in the office. Research on human behavior indicates that people can control, to a huge extent, their emotions through the use of various strategies that influence the kind of emotions a person experiences (Gross and John, 2003). This research will look at how a salesperson can influence their emotions and the effect emotions have on motivation, burnout and selling behavior. Cognitive reappraisal involves regulation of emotions and phrasing a situation that might elicit negative emotions in a way that it takes a positive perspective so the well-being of the salesperson remains unaffected or improves (Kemp et al., 2012).

Literature Review

Emotion regulation involves the process through which a person makes an effort to influence the kind of emotions they have, when they get to have these emotions and the way they experience and express them. Someone may regulate their emotions to simplify, intensify or dampen an existing emotion (Gross et al., 2006). Emotion regulation is not the same as coping as the focus of coping is reducing the bad effects of an event. Emotion regulation primarily focuses on the management of a person's subjective state. Research shows that people have some level of control on the emotions they experience and can change or dampen them at will (Kemp et al., 2012).

A common strategy used in emotion regulation is cognitive reappraisal. This strategy can simply be referred to as reappraisal and involves one using various cognitive exercises to rephrase the meaning they assign to an event that elicits an emotion. The goal is to have a positive perspective on the event or situation. The person should feel neutral or empowered over the situation but not feel as a victim or helpless. Sales people face several situations when out in the field that can elicit negative emotions. By gaining control of their emotions, they become better positioned to take constructive action and get better results. Instead of treating a customer's rejection as a sign of personal weakness and incompetence, for instance, the salesperson can reappraise the situation as an opportunity to find sales strategies that work for closing a sale when dealing with a customer like that so that they will be better positioned to close a sale when they meet another prospect with the same objections (Kemp et al., 2012).

Sales people experience both failures and successes on the job. But the failures don't have to be called failures and can be reappraised as learning opportunities. A sales job can be very demanding and a salesperson's ability to control their emotions can prove to be a very useful skill. Sales people should avoid rumination at all costs when they encounter a negative experience. Rumination involves mentally dwelling on an experience for a long time or constantly stressing over the gap between where one is and where they want to be (Kemp et al.,


H1: There is a negative relationship between rumination and cognitive reappraisal.

H2: There is a positive relationship between emotional exhaustion and rumination.

H3: The relationship between emotional exhaustion and cognitive reappraisal will be mediated by rumination.

H4: There is a positive relationship between the performance of a salesperson and their motivation (Kemp et al.,

Research Model

A structural equation analysis will be utilized through the use of maximum likelihood estimation method. A two-step procedure will be employed in first assessing the construct and discriminant model and then in the testing of the hypothesis in the structural model. The study will use already existing scales laid out by various pieces of literature to measure the constructs in the study. Various statistical techniques will also be used to evaluate discriminate and construct validity (Kemp et al.,

Plan for Data Collection

Data will be collected using a web-based survey which will be sent to sales people in the business-to-business niche. To help in attaining generalizability, the target firms will be drawn from different fields. Phone and mail will be used to contact twenty sales managers who will in turn be requested to share with their sales force the survey questions. 300 sales people will answer the survey questions. Another source of data that will also be considered will be existing literature in the field (Kemp et al.,

Expected Results

The expected results would indicate that there is a negative relationship between rumination and cognitive reappraisal. Further, the findings would indicate that a positive relationship exists between rumination and emotional exhaustion. Also, the study would show that a negative relationship exists between motivation and emotional exhaustion. Finally, the research would point to there being a positive relationship between those who show adaptive selling behavior and cognitive reappraisal.

Practical Implications

The research will avail empirical evidence to show that strategies for emotion regulation such as cognitive reappraisal can assist sales personnel manage their emotions in an effective and predictable manner. This may influence how managers allocate resources in helping salespeople manage their emotions by doing such things as identifying the most common emotions sales people deal with on a daily basis and training them on how to reappraise them (Kemp et al.,

Theoretical Contributions

The research has focused on examining cognitive reappraisal and the impact it has on various constructs. The relationships existing between rumination, emotional control and performance have also been considered. The role of feelings people have because of how they frame their experiences on how they perform on the job has also been covered. Future research done in the area might….....

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Curd, M. (2015). Marketing Plan: Coca-Cola in 2015. Retrieved November 24, 2016, from
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