Sales Education Foundation


Announcing the 2019 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 is April 30, 2019. Find more information on requirements and submissions here

2018 SEF Research Grants Awarded

The Sales Education Foundation is proud to announce the recipients of our 2018 SEF Research Grant Program. Grants of $5,000 each were awarded to:

• Scott Friend (Miami University), Kumar Rakesh Ranjan (Indian Institute of Calcutta) and Jeff S. Johnson, Ph.D. (University of Missouri-Kansas City) for their proposal titled Failing Fast; Assessing the contingent benefits of salesperson failing fast on performance and attitudinal outcomes.

• Ryan Mullins (Clemson University) for his proposal titled Uncovering the Impact of Sales Force Capabilities on Firm Performance.

Winning proposals were evaluated by an independent selection committee chaired by Dr. Leff Bonney, SEF Advisory Board member and Associate Professor at Florida State University. We congratulate this year’s recipients and look forward to the completion of their papers and publication.

SEF has awarded over $100,000 in research grants and awards since the program began in 2011 through a partnership with Neil Rackham, well-known author of “SPIN Selling.” Read our news release

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.  In addition, researchers need information on the various calls for papers issued by journals and sales-focused conferences. Until recently, information has been challenging to access.
Our commitment to Sales research is supported in part by the SEF Research Grant Program. In addition, other Sales research shared with SEF is posted below. You’ll also find posted calls for papers for conferences and special journal publications.  Please connect with us via our Questions and Suggestions feature below if you’d like to see a paper added.


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:

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:

  • Journal of Marketing Analytics Special Issue – Analytics and Sales – Call for Proposals. Deadline November 30, 2019.   More information
  • Journal of Selling Special Issue – Women in Sales. Deadline August 19,  2019  More information
  • GSSI 2020 – Global Sales Science Institute Call for Papers. Deadline January 10, 2020.   More information


Find links to published sales research outside of SEF’s Grant program of interest to professionals and academics below. We invite you to share your research with your colleagues and industry practitioners. Please email SEF.