Sales Call Anxiety, Employee Burnout, and the Moderating Effect of Supervisor Support
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Sales industries have traditionally experienced extreme levels of turnover, with certain sales industries’ turnover rate exceeding 80%. Sales Call Anxiety and burnout syndrome, specifically, emotional exhaustion, are two major conditions experienced by salespeople that can lead to not only increased turnover, but reduced job performance and job satisfaction as well. Despite a wealth of research on both conditions in isolation, the relationship between these constructs had not been previously examined. Based on the findings of prior literature, this study hypothesized that a direct relationship exists between the constructs. It also hypothesized that supervisor support received by salespeople will have a direct effect on both SCA and burnout. Additionally, considering the reverse-buffering effects observed for perceptions of supervisor support by employees, supervisor support was also hypothesized to have a moderating effect on the relationship between SCA and burnout. Results indicated that a direct relationship exists between SCA and emotional exhaustion, positive perceptions of supervisor support and emotional exhaustion, and negative supervisor support and both SCA and emotional exhaustion. Results of the moderation analysis showed that SCA becomes less related to emotional exhaustion as negative perceptions of supervisor support increase. Implications for theory and practice are discussed.