Characteristics that Enhance Training Effectiveness in Implementing Technological Change in Sales Strategy: A Field-Based Exploratory Study

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Organizations are increasingly emphasizing online sales channels over traditional offline sales channels. This research examines how training influences a salesperson's ability to manage such a technological change in the firm's sales strategy. Findings suggest that formality of training has a positive effect and voluntariness has a negative effect on the perceived effectiveness of training in a change implementation context. Older salespeople and those likely to be favorably affected by the change respond more positively to timely training and a less formal training format. Training effectiveness in turn has a positive influence on the salesperson's perceived ability to manage the change, with learning orientation of the salesperson weakening the effect. Implications for the design of sales force automation and change implementation training programs are discussed.