Sales Training


Special issue of Journal of Selling; Deadline 1 Sep 2020

Journal of Selling

Special Issue Call for Papers – Deadline for submissions – September 1, 2020

Sales Training

Guest Editor: Charles H. Schwepker, Jr., University of Central Missouri

Sales training today is more important than ever. In one study, 69 percent of sales organizations cited salesperson training as the top service offering provided by companies to enable their sales organization’s success.1 This makes sense as salespeople who are effectively trained have been found to produce at higher levels.2. Seventy-one percent of companies take six months or longer to onboard new salespeople, while a third of all companies put newly hired sales representatives through nine months of training.3 While the amount of money spent on sales training will vary by company size and industry, organizations spend an average of $2,236 per salesperson on sales training every year.4 By one account, U.S. companies alone spend $15 billion each year training sales employees.5

Despite the significance of sales training and calls for more research on sales training6, there has been limited academic research in this area over the past decade. Yet, the state of professional selling is constantly evolving. Today’s salesforce faces increased customer expectations, greater use of data, the development and implementation of artificial intelligence in sales processes, the growing use of inside sales and virtual sales, and increasing cooperation between sales, marketing and customer service teams.7 Couple these trends with today’s mix of salespeople involving generations stretching from Z to Baby Boomers who comprise different types of learners, who need to develop various types of skills, and one can begin to imagine the potential complexities involved in today’s sales training environment. With this in mind, submissions of empirical, practical application, and pedagogy that offer considerable contributions are invited.

Topics of interest for this issue include (but are not limited to):

  • Methods used to assess sales training needs and determine sales training objectives
  • Most prevalent sales training needs in today’s salesforce
  • The selection of sales trainers and training locations
  • Sales training methods (e.g., classroom, online, on-the-job, behavioral simulations, self-directed learning, etc.)
  • The role of new technologies such as virtual reality, augmented reality and artificial intelligence in sales training
  • Best methods to measure sales training stickiness
  • Usage and effectiveness of follow-up sales training
  • Methods for supporting a variety of learners (e.g., generations )
  • Determining the effectiveness of sales training
  • Ethical and legal issues in sales training

Contact information for the Special Issue Editor:

Charles H. Schwepker, Jr., Ph.D.
Randall and Kelly Harbert Marketing Professor
Marketing Program
Harmon College of Business & Professional Studies
University of Central Missouri
Warrensburg, Missouri 64093
Office 660-543-8554 ;

Submission Information:

Each electronic submission should contain two Microsoft WORD files (no PDFs please). The cover page document should include the title of the paper (upper/lower case), name, position and complete contact information for each author. The other document should contain the manuscript without any author-identifying information. Journal of Selling manuscripts must contain a “managerial implications” section. Manuscripts should be prepared in accordance with Journal of Selling author guidelines at

The Journal of Selling has 3 categories of manuscripts:

  • Academic manuscripts use the traditional scientific approach for understanding sales phenomena and the goal is to add to the body of knowledge that is supported by rigorous research methods.
  • Application manuscripts focus on sharing cutting edge insight on marketplace behaviors, changes, benchmarks, etc. Theoretically sensible, the papers generally focus on an existing problem/opportunity and provide more information on current reality.
  • Pedagogy manuscripts should illustrate a teaching/training improvement when using a certain idea/method/content/approach and contain empirical support. The importance of teaching and researching in this domain is vital to help educators and trainers remain on the cutting edge of sales instruction and case studies are now accepted as well.

Submit papers directly to with the subject: JS Special Issue Submission.


  1. Brainshark, “2016 CSO Insights Sales Enablement Optimization Study,” (accessed July 2, 2019).
  2. Dickie, Jim, “Sales Training: Is it Worth It?” (accessed July 2, 2019).
  3. Comaford, Christine, “Salespeople Are Burning Out Faster Than Ever — Here’s Why,” Forbes online, (accessed July 2, 2019).
  4. Cole, Megan, “ATD Research Presents: 2019 State of Sales Training,” (accessed July 2, 2019).
  5. Loechner, Jack, “800 Billion for Sales Training,”
  6. Lassk, Felicia G., Thomas N. Ingram, Florian Kraus and Rita Di Mascio (2012), “The Future of Sales Training: Challenges and Related Research Questions,” Journal of Personal Selling & Sales Management, 32 (Winter), 141-54; Singh, Vijay Lakshmi, Ajay K. Manrai and Lalita A. Manrai (2015), “Sales Training: A State of the Art and Contemporary Review,” Journal of Economics, Finance and Administrative Science, 20, 54-71.
  7. Scott, Tamara, “The 2018 Salesforce State of Sales Report: Major Conclusions,” (accessed July 2, 2019).