How much does an individual’s FIT Science profile contribute to work performance?
If FIT and sales are related, this is important because it would suggest that developing FIT – which our research has shown is eminently trainable – is a key to improving productivity.
Previous research has not linked real monetary performance at the individual level with personality or any individual difference factors. This is difficult because in most jobs it is not possible to measure real actual performance measures.
FIT thinking and behaving seem especially important within the field of sales where the individual needs to be responsive and adaptive to the customer’s needs. Therefore the current study sought to examine how FIT – a person based factor – relates to prospective sales performance over a 5 month period.
It was expected that ‘FITter’ employees in an international company would have superior sales performances. FIT dimensions – including both inner and outer FITness (5 Constancies and Behavioural Flexibility) were measured with The FIT Profiler.
Sales performance was evaluated on a monthly basis by the fee earnings of each individual. Employees were also rated by their managers on their future potential within the organisation.
Fifty-three operational sales staff at a large international company participated in this study.
ProcedureThe employees completed the FIT Profiler online and received feedback on their personal Profiler reports. The sales performance of each employee was recorded for the following 5 consecutive months. The researchers received a month-by-month analysis of each employee’s fee earnings over the 5 month period. The organisation rated each employee on a 1-5 scale of ‘Potential’ – with higher scores indicating greater potential within the organisation.
The monthly sales performances differed considerably between employees from month to month.
Such large variability in sales performances makes it very difficult to find an association between FITness and sales performance (because so many market and external factors are likely to weigh heavily on whether a contract is signed and fees paid).
In such a context, finding a relationship between FIT and sales would be highly suggestive of a direct link.
The sales performances of the low, average and high FIT groups are displayed in Table 1. The average fee incomes for each group show a noticeable beneficial effect of FITness. The fee incomes for the high FIT group are 10 times greater than the fee incomes for the low FIT group and this substantial difference in performance is achieved with less than 2 times the overall FIT score.