Sales Education Foundation

SALES RESEARCH - Papers, Grants and CFPs

Announcing the 2020 SEF Research Grant Program Call for Proposals


The goal of the SEF research grant program is to recognize sales-specific research with the potential for application by sales executives, sales managers and/or the sales force. Two recipients will be chosen by an independent selection committee to each receive a $5,000 grant. Proposals are evaluated on three key criteria – Innovation, Practicality and Dissemination. Deadline for submission has been extended to May 29, 2020. Find more information on requirements and submission instructions here

Congratulations to our 2019 SEF Research Grant Program Recipients

The Sales Education Foundation is proud to announce the recipients of our 2019 SEF Research Grant Program. Grants of $5,000 each were awarded to:
• Victor Chernetsky (Michigan State University) for his proposal titled, “The Role of Senior Executives and Organizational Culture in Management of Conflict Between Sales and Marketing.” His adviser is Douglas E. Hughes, Ph.D.
• Yeji Lim (University of Missouri) for her proposal titled, “Motivating Salespeople to Work Smarter and Harder: A Behavioral Economics and Agency-theoretic Approach.” Her adviser is Murali Mantrala, Ph.D.
• Alec Pappas (Florida State University) for his proposal titled,”The Turnover Pandemic: A Network Perspective on Salesperson Turnover Contagion. His adviser is Willy Bolander, Ph.D.

We congratulate this year’s recipients and look forward to the completion of their papers and publication.

SEF has awarded over $140,000 in research grants and awards. Our research grant program began in 2011 when Neil Rackham, well-known author of “SPIN Selling” partnered with SEF to provide $5,000 grants. Today SEF continues to provide research grants to individuals and doctoral candidates. Read our news release.

The Importance of Research into Business Issues

Sales specific research is needed to bridge the gap between academia and industry. Sales managers need easy access to published research where they can find best practices and solid methodology for dealing with their daily challenges.
Our commitment to Sales research is supported in part by the SEF Research Grant Program. SEF posts calls for papers from conferences and special journal publications. Please connect with us via our Questions and Suggestions feature below if you’re unable to find a link or paper.


According to Neil Rackham, “the time has come for new approaches to customer interaction.” Since 2011, $5,000 research grants have been awarded annually. Links to published papers appear below. Efforts have been made to ensure accuracy. Please note we do not list papers that require a fee to access the published paper. If you discover a non-working link or other issue, please contact SEF.

Grant recipients by year

2018 – Scott B. Friend, Jeff S. Johnson and Kumar Rakesh Ranjan“Fail Fast, Sell Well” Read the Executive Summary-Part One

2018 – Scott B. Friend, Jeff S. Johnson and Kumar Rakesh Ranjan“Fail Fast Strategy in Sales Force Management” Read the Executive Summary-Part Two

2017 – Stacey L. Malek, Shikhar Sarin, and Bernard J. Jaworski – “A Measurement Model of the Dimensions and Types of Informal Organizational Control”
Read the Executive Summary Report

2015 – Dr. V. Kumar – “Why Do Salespeople Quit?  An Empirical Examination of Own and Peer Effects on Salesperson Turnover Behavior”
AMA Journal of Marketing Research

2015 – Blake Runnalls – “The Impact of Social Networks on Sales Training Transfer and Performance” Read the Summary Report.

2014 – Raghuram Bommaraju – “Self-Selected Sales Incentives: Evidence of Their Effectiveness, Persistence, Durability and Underlying Mechanisms”
Executive Summary | AMA Journal of Marketing

2014 – Raj Agnihotri – “Salesperson Ambidexterity and Customer Satisfaction: Examining the role of customer demandingness, adaptive selling, and role conflict”
Executive Summary | JPSSM

2013 – Drs. Nick Panagopoulos and Adam Rapp – “Adaptive Sales Capabilities and Sales Performance” Read the summary report.

2013 – Craig C. Chapman, Jeffrey Patrick Boichuk, Thomas J. Steenburgh, Michael Ahearne – “Real Earnings Management in Sales”
Journal of Accounting Research

2012 – Mark P. Leach and Annie H. Liu – “It ain’t over ’til it’s over: Evaluating Reacquisition Opportunities in Business-to-Business Markets”
Industrial Marketing Management

2011 – Zachary R. Hall, Michael Ahearne, & Harish Sujan – “The Importance of Starting Right: The Influence of Accurate Intuition on Performance in Salesperson–Customer Interactions.”
AMA Journal link


Conferences and journals offer researchers the opportunity to submit papers for consideration. See current open calls below:

  • Special issue in JPSSM – The Human Side of Digital Transformation in Sales. Deadline August 1, 2020.  More information
  • Journal of Selling Special Issue – Sales Training. Deadline September 1, 2020.   More information
  • Industrial Marketing Management (IMM) – B2B Sales & Social Media. Deadline February 1, 2021. More information
  • Journal of Marketing Education Special Issue – #PandemicPedagogy-Tales of the Unexpected. Deadline June 1, 2021. More Information