Antecedents of Salespeople's Reluctance to Sell Radically New Products

Olli-Pekka Kauppila*, Risto Rajala, Annukka Jyrämä

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


Contemporary marketing and management discussions emphasize companies' ability to exploit current business opportunities while exploring emerging opportunities in changing environments. Salespeople play a key role in both of these activities. However, prior research provides little guidance on explorative activities at the operational level of the organization. This conceptual article establishes an explanatory model on the antecedents of salespeople's reluctance to sell radically new products (RNPs). Reluctance to sell RNPs is a potentially important but previously overlooked obstacle to companies' explorative activities. This article focuses on both the factors that influence an individual salesperson's motivation, and the organizational systems that may increase or decrease his or her motivation to sell RNPs. To this end, this article offers eight propositions that both managers and researchers can utilize in future studies.
Original languageEnglish
JournalIndustrial Marketing Management
Issue number2
Pages (from-to)308-316
Number of pages9
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • Sales management
  • Motivation
  • Control systems
  • New products

Cite this