Sales Performance and Social Preferences

32 Pages Posted: 14 May 2018

See all articles by Andrea Essl

Andrea Essl

University of Bern

Frauke von Bieberstein

University of Bern

Michael Kosfeld

Goethe University Frankfurt; IZA Institute of Labor Economics; Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR); CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute); University of Bonn - Center for Development Research (ZEF)

Markus Kröll

Goethe University Frankfurt - Department of Management and Applied Microeconomics

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Abstract

We use an incentivized experimental game to uncover heterogeneity in otherregarding preferences among salespeople in a large Austrian retail chain. Our results show that the majority of agents take the welfare of others into account but a significant fraction reveals self-regarding behavior. Matching individual behavior in the game with firm data on sales performance shows that higher concern for others is significantly associated with higher revenue per customer. At the same time, it is also associated with fewer sales per day. Both effects offset each other, so that the overall association with total sales revenue becomes insignificant. Our findings highlight the nuanced role of self- vs. other-regarding concerns in sales contexts with important implications for management and marketing research.

Keywords: other-regarding preferences, sales performance, experimental games

JEL Classification: C91, D91, M31

Suggested Citation

Essl, Andrea and von Bieberstein, Frauke and Kosfeld, Michael and Kröll, Markus, Sales Performance and Social Preferences. IZA Discussion Paper No. 11505. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3177380

Andrea Essl (Contact Author)

University of Bern

Frauke Von Bieberstein

University of Bern ( email )

Michael Kosfeld

Goethe University Frankfurt ( email )

Faculty of Economics and Business Administration
Theodor-W.-Adorno-Platz 4
Frankfurt am Main, 60323
Germany

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Schaumburg-Lippe-Str. 7 / 9
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR) ( email )

London
United Kingdom

CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute) ( email )

Poschinger Str. 5
Munich, DE-81679
Germany

University of Bonn - Center for Development Research (ZEF) ( email )

Walter-Flex-Str. 3
Bonn, NRW 53113
Germany

Markus Kröll

Goethe University Frankfurt - Department of Management and Applied Microeconomics ( email )

Germany
+496979834827 (Phone)

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