An Investigation of African-American Perceptions of Sales Careers

DelVecchio, Susan; Honeycutt, Jr., Earl D.
January 2000
Journal of Personal Selling & Sales Management;Winter2000, Vol. 20 Issue 1, p43
Academic Journal
For a variety of reasons, corporations have turned their attention to diversifying the sales force. If firms are to attract racial minorities, sales recruiters must be aware of differences in how African-American students perceive sales careers. This study evaluated 488 African-American and Caucasian business students in terms of their appeal for and perceptions of sales careers. The findings of this study dispel the assumption that African-American college students find sales to be less appealing than Caucasian students. For the majority of sales career options, no racial differences in appeal of the sales career existed. In the case of real estate sales, African-American students rated sales careers as being more financially rewarding and requiring higher levels of education. A discussion of the findings is provided for managers.


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