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sales–marketing interface, qualitative, Saudi Arabia, culture, power
Extant research on sales–marketing interface has ignored emerging markets as research contexts. This study uses grounded theory methodology and depth-interview data from 37 sales and marketing professionals in Saudi Arabia to explicate how firm contexts that are influenced by Islamic values may shape intraorganizational mechanisms between firm leadership and sales and marketing departments, moderate their roles in marketing strategy activities, and affect interface dynamics. Specifically, appreciation of high power distance and traditional authority allow top leadership to be extensively involved in firm's everyday operations and there is a conspicuous absence of two-way dialog between top leadership and interface personnel. As a result, marketing strategy making authority is rarely transferred to sales and marketing. The context thus creates a chain of command with top leadership holding central authority, marketers preparing action plans and salespeople implementing those plans. Overall, this context brings forth certain hitherto unexplored perspectives on this interface.
Journal of Business Research