Publication Date


Document Type


First Advisor

Nelson, J. H.

Degree Name

M.S. (Master of Science)

Legacy Department

Department of Education and Administrative Services


Sales personnel; Selling


Problem. Stating the problem briefly, this research project concerned itself with three aspects of selling. They were: (a) a determination of characteristics of successful salesman in selected narrating areas; (b) a determination of the relative importance of these characteristics; and (c) a determination of their correlation from one marketing area to another. Procedures. The procedure employed was that of a rank- order scale (Thurstone Scale). A collection of simple statements was amassed, processed, and presented to a panel of experts. These experts evaluated than in a rank-order placing than along a continuum from the most favored or approved to the least favored or approved. A median scale value was assigned to their deliberations. The final selection of sixteen statements, which became the questionnaire, represented an even distribution along this continuum. This evaluative device was nailed to selected marketing areas within the selected geographical area. The questionnaire statements ware tallied using a weighted system in order to give their positions the relative importance they deserved. These statements were then analyzed as to their final rankings for each of the selected marketing areas. Each marketing area was then correlated with all of the other marketing areas by the use of the Spearman correlation technique. Findings. An analysis of the rankings of the charac­teristics showed that Has Knowledge of the Subject, Has Initiative, Makes a Good First Impression, Is Factual, and Is Aggressive appeared to be statements most widely chosen as being the most successful. Is Hard and Selfish, Is Quiet and Reserved, Has Certain Physical Attributes and Good Posture, Not Abrupt in his Manner, and Has a Vivid Imagina­tion appeared to be statements most widely chosen as being the least successful of the characteristics. The one statement that evinced the widest discrepancy was Has Strong Sense of Moral Values. The analysis of the rankings of the characteristics also showed that there was an extremely high correlation between all of the selected marketing areas, the individual marketing area that exhibited the lowest correlation (bear­ing in mind that all of them were relatively high) was the Marketing Students. Further Research. Advanced work should be done to see if the characteristics that determine a successful sales­man can be transferred to dollars and cents; or should new criteria be established.


Includes bibliographical references (leaf 77)


vii, 77 pages




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