You hold a position of leadership and accountability as a sales manager. While keeping in mind the distinctive characteristics of each of your individual sales agents, including their skills, limitations, and the best ways to be developed, you must balance the goals, demands, and aspirations of your team and the organization.
But that’s not all; as a sales manager, your actions and philosophies will set an example for your staff, particularly for new employees. Consider adopting the following four ideas as a starting point for your management style as part of your leadership.
Outstanding sales managers are product experts who can guide their sales representatives in translating product knowledge into specific customer benefits. They are familiar with their businesses, rivals, and sectors. Product and industry knowledge are two of the three strongest foundations for building trust with sales reps. They also understand their sales staff, both as a whole and as individuals, and they make use of this understanding to bring out the best in their subordinates.
Superior sales managers go above and beyond simply recognizing their staff members; they genuinely care about them. Sales managers learn what is truly important to their sales agents both individually and collectively as part of showing them they care about them. Top sales managers genuinely care about their customers, so they go above and beyond to provide the finest service possible, even if that means giving a home phone number to address a delivery issue or making a weekend site visit to make sure the issue is fixed. They are “totally, viscerally attached” to achieving their allotted performance goals.
At least 25% to 33% of an excellent sales manager’s day is spent coaching, with most of that time being spent with the middle third of their sales force. Why? They understand that improving the performance of their average performers will make their mid-tier sales representatives more competitive with rival organizations’ top-tier sales representatives.
Excellent sales managers motivate their staff by setting high expectations and then providing them with the resources and assurance they need to meet those expectations. They remove obstacles and bring about change for their sales staff. They communicate effectively and frequently so that everyone in the team is aware of where they stand, and what is expected of them, and that they will always be heard. Excellent sales managers also set a good example. Sales managers lead from the front and would never ask their agents to do anything they wouldn’t or couldn’t do themselves.