hero image
Andrea L. Dixon, Ph.D. - Baylor University . Waco, TX, US

Andrea L. Dixon, Ph.D.

Executive Director, Center for Professional Selling // The Frank M. and Floy Smith Holloway Professor in Marketing | Baylor University


Dr. Dixon focuses on behavioral issues related to sales, service and customer satisfaction.


Dr. Andrea Dixon provides academic leadership for Baylor University’s Center for Professional Selling. Since 2009, Dixon has built Baylor’s sales center into one of the top programs in the country, commemorated its 25th anniversary (the oldest sales center in the U.S.), and edited the 30th anniversary issue of the Journal of Personal Selling and Sales Management. Dixon’s work appears in Harvard Business Review, Journal of Marketing (JM), Organizational Science, Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science, Leadership Quarterly, European Journal of Marketing (EJM), the Journal of Personal Selling and Sales Management (JPSSM), and Journal of Marketing Education (JME). Her work in JM was the 2002 award-winner.

Book contributions include: Strategic Sales Leadership, Systems for Success, The Oxford Handbook of Sales Management and Sales Strategy and Sales Management. Editorial Review Boards include: EJM, JPSSM, JME, Journal of Marketing Theory and Practice, and the Journal of Business-to-Business Marketing.

Dixon is an award-winning teacher: Cornelia Marschall Smith Award (2020), American Marketing Association’s (AMA) Excellence in Teaching (2014); Hankamer School of Business Teaching Excellence (2014); International Academy of Marketing Science's Marketing Teacher (2008); Ronald J. Dornoff Teaching Fellow (2008-2010); MBA Teacher (2003), Distinguished Teaching Professorship (1995), Irwin Publishing’s National Teacher (1994). As a member of Duke University’s Global Learning Resource Network for Executive Education, Dr. Dixon addressed executives in London, Hong Kong, Mumbai, Mexico City, Dubai, Hyderabad, and Paris. Conference chair leadership includes: Global Sales Science Institute (2012; 2017); 3M Frontline (2012; 2016); AMA (2007). Selected board service includes: University Sales Center Alliance (President); AMA Academic Council; GSSI; University Sales Center Alliance; AMA Sales SIG (President), National Conference on Sales Management; World Impact.

Areas of Expertise (7)

Professional Selling

Marketing Research


Marketing Strategy

Organizational Behavior

Marketing Planning

Behavioral Psychology

Accomplishments (9)

Best Paper

Journal of Research in Interactive Marketing 2016

Best Paper

Journal of Marketing 2002

Excellence in Teaching Award

American Marketing Association 2014

Teaching Excellence Award

Hankamer School of Business Baylor University 2014

Dean’s Research Fellow


Top University Sales Program

Sales Education Foundation 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016

Top Sales Coach

World Collegiate Sales Open, Northern Illinois University 2011


Academy for Teaching and Learning 2008-2009

Outstanding Marketing Teacher Award

Academy of Marketing Science 2008

Education (3)

Indiana University: Ph.D., Marketing

Boston University: MBA, Marketing

Kent State University: BBA, BFA, Marketing, Theatre

Affiliations (7)

  • Board Member, Editorial Review Boards : Journal of Business-to-Business Marketing, Journal of Marketing Education, Journal of Marketing Theory and Practice, Journal of Personal Selling and Sales Management
  • Board Member : Baylor University Board of Regents 2016-2018
  • Board Member : Academic Council of the American Marketing Association (international) 2012-2015
  • Board Member : Global Sales Science Institute (international) 2010-2014
  • Board Member : National Conference on Sales Management 2010-2012
  • Executive Committee : Baylor Faculty Senate 2016-2017
  • Board Member (President 2015-2016) : Baylor Round Table 2014-2017

Media Appearances (8)

Business Review - Sales Evolution

KWBU-FM (NPR/Waco)  online


AUDIO: Andrea Dixon, Ph.D., professor of marketing and executive director of the Center for Professional Selling at Baylor, shares how changing times have changed the landscape of sales.

view more

Business Review - “The Lead Conductor”

KWBU  online


AUDIO: Andrea Dixon, Ph.D., executive director for the Center for Professional Selling and associate professor of marketing, gives insight into the changing management process.

view more

Business Review - Sales Evolution

KWBU  online


Sales professionals today need to bring a fresh set of skills to the marketplace. Andrea Dixon, Ph.D., marketing professor and executive director of the Center for Professional Selling, shares what employers are looking for when hiring sales professionals and how their roles have changed.

view more

Marketing Professor Andrea L. Dixon Honored as Cornelia Marschall Smith Professor of the Year

Baylor Media and Public Relations  online


Andrea L. Dixon, Ph.D., associate professor of marketing and executive director of the Center for Professional Selling in the Hankamer School of Business, has been named Baylor University’s 2020 Cornelia Marschall Smith Professor of the Year. Dixon also holds The Frank and Floy Smith Holloway Endowed Professorship in Marketing, and leads Baylor’s Professional Selling program, building a robust corporate partnership program that funds student development and a center endowment.

view more

Members of Baylor University’s Presidential Search Committee Announced

Baylor Media Communications  


Representing faculty, staff/administration, students, alumni and the Board of Regents, the search committee has begun its work, led by chair Bob Brewton, B.B.A. ’74, of Houston, president and principal owner of Brewton Investment Corp., and 2011 Baylor Distinguished Alumnus, and vice chair Andrea L. Dixon, Ph.D., The Frank M. and Floy Smith Holloway Endowed Professor in Marketing and executive director of the Center for Professional Selling and Keller Center for Research in Baylor’s Hankamer School of Business. The committee will be selecting a search firm to assist with the national search for Baylor’s next president.

view more

Baylor University starts presidential search

The Baptist Standard  online


Vice chair is Andrea Dixon, the Frank M. and Floy Smith Holloway Endowed Professor in Marketing and executive director of the Center for Professional Selling and Keller Center for Research in Baylor’s Hankamer School of Business.

view more

Baylor starts search for next president

Waco Tribune Herald  online


Baylor alumnus Bob Brewton, president and principal owner of Brewton Investment Corp., leads the group. Andrea Dixon, an associate marketing professor and executive director of Baylor’s Center for Professional Selling, serves as vice chair, according to a press release.

view more

Where Did All the Entry-Level Jobs Go?

The Wall Street Journal  print


Andrea Dixon, Ph.D., The Frank M. And Floy Smith Holloway Professor of Marketing and executive director of the Keller Center for Research and the Center for Professional Selling in Baylor’s Hankamer School of Business, was interviewed for this article about the change in climate for entry-level jobs. Dixon shared the successes of Baylor’s Center for Professional Selling and how it trains and equips new graduates to step into high-impact, high-paying sales careers in companies such as Humana Inc., Oracle Corp. and 3M Co. The readiness and preparedness of these students presents a cost savings to employers.

view more

Articles (22)

The Sales Center: A Structure Addressing Multiple Dynamics Facing Business Schools

Journal of the Academy of Business Education

2016 Business schools face a number of challenging dynamics: enrollment, funding, expectations, curriculum, and corporate demands. Developing a sales center can bring key constituents together to establish mutual benefit amidst such challenges. Our research and experience suggests that sales centers provide a learning opportunity advantageous to schools of business and their respective institutions, external partners, and students. We outline benefits to key stakeholders from a sales center and guidelines to assist those institutions considering the adoption of a sales center.

Omni-Channel Research Framework in the Context of Personal Selling and Sales Management

Journal of Research in Interactive Marketing

2016 This paper develops an omni-channel framework in the context of sales and sales management related to six areas: sales contexts, impact of technology, stages in the sales process, impact on relationships, impact on firm performance and the role of various communication tools and platforms and offers future reach needs in each of these areas.

Professional Sales Coaching: An Integrative Review and Research Agenda

European Journal of Marketing

2015 Providing an integrative review of coaching research from different contexts (e.g. athletics, executive coaching, project management and sales), this research delineates professional sales coaching from other developmental activities and develops a research agenda for stimulating research on professional sales coaching. Professional sales coaching is considered an important sales force developmental program by both sales practitioners and researchers. Yet, research on sales coaching remains fragmented in the extant literature.

The Review of the Interactive Marketing Literature in the Context of Personal Selling and Sales Management: A Research Agenda

Journal of Research in Interactive Marketing

2014 The authors complete a 16-year review of the interactive marketing literature in the context of personal selling and sales management (106 articles from 1998-2013). The results show that the interactive marking field is growing. There is clearly a significant opportunity for scholarly work across wide-ranging personal selling and sales management topics, and specifically in the areas of performance indices, evolving technologies, social media and tactical sales and management issues.

Developing a Stakeholder Approach for Recruiting Top‐level Sales Students

Journal of Marketing Education

2014 With growing industry demand for sales professionals, recruitment at colleges and universities that have a sales education focus has increased remarkably over the past few years. However, results indicate that hiring organizations face an uphill task in filling sales positions. Recruiters and students struggle to build critical person–job fit during a relatively brief period of interaction. To address these issues, the present article presents a two-staged ideal recruitment process based on a stakeholder perspective. A set of 16 propositions is provided for improving key outcomes of the sales student recruitment process.

Transforming Selling: Why It Is Time to Think Differently About Sales Research

Journal of Personal Selling and Sales Management

2012 The authors propose transforming the current definition of selling to account for growth in knowledge, changes in the sales function, and impact of technology on the sales process. The proposed definition of sales is the phenomenon of human-driven interaction between and within individuals/organizations in order to bring about economic exchange within a value-creation context. By taking the perspective of the customer’s value-creation process, the authors challenge scholars to consider the industry context in which sales is occurring as well as the language and metaphors used in selling and sales research.

Social Network Theory and the Sales Manager Role: Engineering the Right Relationship Flows

Journal of Personal Selling and Sales Management

2012 Sales leadership research has typically taken a leader-focused approach, investigating key questions from a top-down perspective. Yet considerable research outside sales has advocated a view of leadership that takes into account the fact that employees look beyond a single designated individual for leadership. In particular, the social networks of leaders have been a popular topic of investigation in the management literature, although coverage in the sales literature remains rare. The present paper conceptualizes the sales leadership role as one in which the leader must manage a network of simultaneous relationships; several types of sales manager relationships, such as the sales-manager-to-top manager and the sales-manager-to-sales manager relationships, have received limited attention in the sales literature to date. Taking an approach based on social network theory, we develop a conceptualization of the sales manager as a “network engineer,” who must manage multiple relationships, and the flows between them. Drawing from this model, we propose a detailed agenda for future sales research.

The Complexities of Sales and Sales Management Research: A Historical Analysis from 1990 to 2005

Journal of Personal Selling and Sales Management

2008 Researchers have postulated that sales and sales management research is more problematic to conduct than other managerial research and has become more difficult to conduct over time. To address this issue, we examine 532 samples from 1990 to 2005. We find that researchers can positively affect response rate and obtained sample size by the judicious selection of response facilitators, and we identify the single best facilitator for a sales sample as well as the best combination of facilitators. Importantly, the use of the two suggested response facilitators increases the estimated obtained sample size by 58 percent compared to a study with no facilitators.

Distributed Leadership in Teams: The Network of Leadership Perceptions and Team Performance

Leadership Quarterly

2006 This study uses social network analysis to examine distributed leadership in work teams. We used sociometric data from 28 field-based sales teams to investigate how the network structure of leadership perceptions considered at the team level of analysis was related to team performance. We failed to find support for the idea that the more leadership is distributed across the members of a team the better the team’s performance: Decentralization of the leadership network (across three different operationalizations of network decentralization) was not significantly related to superior team performance. But we did find support for the idea that certain kinds of decentralized leadership structures are associated with better team performance than others. Our study suggests that distributed leadership structures can differ with regard to important structural characteristics, and these differences can have important implications for team performance.

The Social Network Ties of Group Leaders: Implications for Group Performance and Leader Reputation

Organization Science

2006 This paper uses data from the sales division of a financial services firm to investigate how a leader’s centrality in external and internal social networks is related to the objective performance of the leader’s group, and to the leader’s personal reputation for leadership among subordinates, peers, and supervisors. External social network ties were based on the friendship ties among all 88 of the division’s sales group leaders and the 10 high-ranking supervisors to whom they reported. Internal social network ties consisted of 28 separate networks, each representing the set of friendship relations among all members of a given sales group. Objective group performance data came directly from company records. Data on each group leader’s personal reputation for leadership was based on the perceptions of three different constituencies: subordinates, peers, and supervisors. Results revealed that leaders’ centrality in external and internal friendship networks was related both to objective measures of group performance and to their reputation for leadership among different organizational constituencies.

Research in Selling and Sales Management: An Agenda from Sales Practitioners

Journal of Personal Selling and Sales Management

2006 Understanding the similarities and differences between the research priorities of academics and those of practitioners may create opportunities for mutually beneficial collaboration. We used a three-phase process to tap industry forward thinkers to identify 40 research topics of import to practitioners in the financial services industry. These topics were refined and validated, leaving 15 areas where research needs are a top priority. We mapped these areas against two published academic research agendas to identify areas of convergence and divergence. Our findings suggest that more than half of academic research falls into areas deemed important by practitioners in this industry. We pinpoint four areas particularly vital to practitioners where little academic research exists. We discuss tailored approaches for developing collaborative research for high-convergence areas versus for low-convergence areas.

Bouncing Back: How Salesperson Optimism and Self Efficacy Influence Attributions and Behaviors Following Failure

Journal of Personal Selling and Sales Management

2005 Previous research reports a relationship between attributions and specific behaviors following a failed sales call. This study investigates the influence of individual differences on both the attribution process and the relationship between attribution and the behavioral intentions of sales representatives following a failure using a sample of financial services salespeople. This research reveals the important roles that optimism and self-efficacy play in shaping salespeople's attributions for failed sales calls and in their behavioral responses to attributions for failure. Implications for managers and future research are discussed.

Key Accounts and Team Selling: Review, Framework and Research Agenda

Journal of Personal Selling and Sales Management

2005 As sales organizations increase their reliance on sales teams, they must learn how organizational and interpersonal relationships influence sales teams, how sales teams play a learning role for organizations, and what makes sales teams effective. Presenting a model of interrelationships among members of the selling firm and between the selling and buying firms, we identify five key team selling relationships between (1) members of the same team, (2) members of different teams within the firm, (3) the selling team and the buying center, (4) the selling team and other groups in the selling and (5) the selling team and the firms strategy. This model leads to a conceptual framework highlighting relationship drivers, factors, and outcomes instrumental to team selling success. After presenting propositions for future research, theoretical and methodological suggestions are included to facilitate research in this area. We conclude with perspectives on the future of research and practice in key accounts and team selling.

The Scholarship of Teaching in Sales Education

Marketing Education Review

2005 The authors take a scholarship of teaching perspective to examine the field of selling and sales management, an area of marketing that has received very little attention within the marketing education literature compared to other core topics in marketing. Research questions toward scholarship of teaching are developed around each of the following key themes: student involvement and using technology in sales education, ethics within a selling and sales management context, synergy across the marketing curriculum and especially between sales and new product development, and the trend toward university sales centers.

Early Success: How Attributions for Sales Success Shape Inexperienced Salespersons’ Behavioral Responses

Journal of Personal Selling and Sales Management

2005 For inexperienced sales representatives, success provides an important learning opportunity from which to build confidence and hone strategies. Such learning is derived from the attributions one makes for success and how those attributions shape future behavior. This research investigates the interpretation and behavioral intentions of inexperienced sales representatives following a successful sales call using a sample of financial services representatives. Surprisingly, we found that achieving success did not assure the adoption or future use of the strategy that garnered that success. These results suggest that inexperienced sales representatives may require managerial attention to fully understand and appropriately assimilate their sales successes. Implications for managers and future research are discussed.

Exploring the ‘Lone Wolf’ Phenomenon in Student Teams

Journal of Marketing Education

2005 The proliferation of projects using student teams has motivated researchers to examine factors that affect both team process and outcomes. This research introduces an individual difference variable found in the business environment that has not been examined in a classroom context. The lone wolf appears to play a role in how teams function and perform. Described by practitioners and academics, the lone wolf is identified by a preference to work alone, a dislike of group process and the ideas of others, and a proclivity to see others as less capable and effective. This study finds the lone wolf phenomenon among marketing students working in teams through self-ratings and the assessments of team members. Furthermore, the inclusion of lone wolves on teams is found to have a negative impact on student team performance. Implications of these findings and ideas for managing the team process when lone wolves are present are considered.

Dysfunctional Behavior among Sales Representatives: The Impact of Supervisory Trust, Participation, and Information Controls

Journal of Personal Selling and Sales Management

2004 This study investigates the efficacy of supervisory trust, participation, and information controls in curbing dysfunctional salesperson behavior so that salesperson actions are in line with organizational goals. Using a sample of 210 salespeople, we develop and test a model incorporating supervisory trust, participation, information controls (output information, activity information, and capability information), and dysfunctional behavior. Output and activity information controls directly affect dysfunctional behavior, whereas capability information controls work positively through trust in the supervisor to reduce dysfunctional behavior. Providing sales representatives with information about their capabilities appears to enhance the supervisor–salesperson trust relationship. Results also indicate that salespeople’s supervisory participation is an effective lever for reducing dysfunctional salesperson behavior through the intervening role of trust in the supervisor.

Listening Begins at Home

Harvard Business Review

2003 Procter & Gamble has long been regarded as a major power of the marketing world and a prime training ground for marketers. But in the summer of 2000, with half of P&G’s top 15 brands losing market share and employee morale in ruins, company executives realized that the marketing organization was in trouble. Training programs had been dramatically downsized and in some cases eliminated, employees were being fast-tracked up the career ladder without sufficient time to develop and hone their skills, mentoring had all but disappeared, and the marketing career path had lost its prestige. In an attempt to rebuild P&G’s marketing strength, James Stengel, the heir apparent to the chief marketing officer position, began working with University of Cincinnati professors Chris Allen and Andrea Dixon on a new training program to fix the weaknesses in the marketing organization. But when the two professors began interviewing P&G senior executives, they discovered that the plans in motion for mapping out the marketing group’s recovery were based not on data but on the intuition of a few individuals at corporate headquarters. So began the most comprehensive internal research endeavor in P&G marketing’s history. Using the company’s existing process for consumer research, Allen and Dixon shadowed employees, conducted one-on-one interviews, held focus-group sessions, and surveyed 3,500 members of the marketing staff to learn what the company was doing right—and wrong—and what mattered most to its people. The results led to the most sweeping redesign of P&G’s marketing organization in 60 years.

Attributions and Behavioral Intentions of Inexperienced Salespersons to Failure

Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science

2003 The goal of this research was to determine how inexperienced sales representatives (rookies) interpret and respond to their sales failure situations. The authors studied 296 rookie financial services sales representatives' performance attributions for a previous unsuccessful sales interaction and their intended behaviors for a future, similar selling situation. This provided the authors the opportunity to compare their results with Dixon, Spiro and Jamil's (2001) findings for experienced sales representatives (veterans). In the event of a sales failure, rookies' responses do not parallel those of veterans. The results suggest that rookies are likely to engage in several inappropriate behaviors in response to failed sales encounters. Implications for managers and directions for future research are discussed.

Identifying the Lone Wolf: A Team Perspective

Journal of Personal Selling and Sales Management

2003 Increased use of sales teams reduces salespeople's latitude to operate as "lone wolves." A lone wolf prefers to when making decisions and setting goals, has little patience for group process, sees others as less effective, and seldom values others' ideas. Research investigating lone wolves suggests they lack organizational commitment. However, no current scale exists for identifying lone wolves. Using sales representatives and student samples, we validate a lone wolf scale and demonstrate how lone wolves differ from autonomous individuals. Having good psychometric properties, the scale is useful to practitioners for assessing representatives for sales team contexts.

Bridging the Distance Between Us: How Initial Responses to Sales Team Conflict Help Shape Core Selling Team Outcomes

Journal of Personal Selling & Sales Management

2002 Intra-team conflict within core selling teams can shape team outcomes. Using congruency theory, we propose how conflict responses impact the relational distance between individuals in a core selling team, creating positive/negative team outcomes. Our framework suggests managers may improve team outcomes by monitoring sales team members’ responses to conflict, encouraging internal cognitive voice behaviors, and intervening in teams not using internal cognitive voice behaviors when relational or process conflict exists. Our model helps explain the paradox in which an individual who is part of a "winning" team (one achieving its team goals) may still choose to exit the team.

Successful and Unsuccessful Sales Calls: Measuring Salesperson Attributions and Behavioral Intentions

Journal of Marketing

2001 Applying attribution theory to consumer behavior issues is quite common. In the managerial arena, previous research suggests that salespeople's attribution processes affect their expectancies for success and future behavior. However, no published research has developed adequate measures that might be used to examine the full range of attributional responses for sales success or failure and the behaviors that are likely to follow such attributions. The goal of this research is to develop a complete set of attributional and behavioral scales for sales success and failure and validate such scales in a real-world context—among field sales representatives. Following Churchill's (1979) recommended process, the authors develop a complete set of attributional and behavioral intention scales that is applicable to a field sales force setting. The authors then measure 228 financial services representatives' performance attributions for a previous sales interaction; their intended behaviors for a future, similar selling situation; and their personal characteristics. The authors test the validities of the scales and examine the usefulness of applying the scales within a theoretically justified nomological network of relationships.