Cognitive Moral Development and the Impact of Perceived Organizational Ethical Climate on the Search for Sales Force Excellence: A Cross-Cultural Study


Marketing and Professional Sales

Document Type


Publication Date

Spring 2006


An empirical study using moral ethical development, perceived ethical climate, and outcomes of perceived ethical climate was conducted in Mexico and compared to an existing U.S. sample of salespeople. Across the two national cultures, it appears there is consistency in a positive significant relationship between ethical climate and individual commitment to quality, and organizational commitment and salesperson performance. However, whereas moral ethical development is negatively associated with perceived organizational ethical climate for Mexican salespeople, there is no such relationship for U.S. salespeople. Ethical climate positively influences organizational commitment for the U.S. salespeople but has no influence for Mexican salespeople. Similarly, individual commitment to quality positively affects performance for the U.S. salespeople but has no impact for the Mexican salespeople. Hofstede's (1983; 1984) cultural dimensions are used to help explain the findings, and implications for practitioners are offered.