This has been something I have repeated many times. The sales manager is one the most challenging jobs in the world. Like any other job, success requires skill and knowledge. But the inner components of an individual are equally important.
Many reasons make sales managers successful. However, they also fail for many reasons. Ask yourself if these problems have ever been a problem for you, or anyone you know, if you are a sales manager/VP.
Failure #1: The sales manager isn’t wired for the job. There is a formula that can be used to determine if a salesperson has the ability to perform.
Sales managers are no different. Sales managers are often ineffective. Many of these salespeople were fantastic and were promoted because they believed that sales management would be easier if they were excellent salespeople. It’s not true.
Both the skill sets and internal wiring of these professions are very different. Sales managers who lack the ability to perform in this role will fail and often bring down the company.
Failure #2: Very few people get the opportunity to be a sales manager. A poor performance in sales can be a barrier to advancement.
Many of the most successful sales managers were, at best mediocre salespeople. Take a look at some of the most successful NFL coaches. Many of these coaches were either very inexperienced players or had never played the game.
They were better at coaching, communicating their vision, and leading the team than they were at playing on the field. A sales company that relies on sales performance to hire a manager may lose out on a great leader in the sales field.
Failure #3: A manager doesn’t have a solid foundation in sales training. What do you get if you place anyone in any job and don’t give them training? An employee is someone who doesn’t want to learn and is constantly frustrated.
Managers don’t always know what to do. Managers must receive the necessary training and resources to be able to recognize and understand the needs of each salesperson to be successful.
Sales managers who receive very little training will make it difficult for their salespeople to perform their job effectively and decrease the company’s competitive edge.
#4 Failure: A lack of a sales system that works.
Without a clear plan to follow, football teams can’t get out on the field. Salespeople won’t succeed if they don’t have a system to follow and a sales plan that every person knows. There is no formula that will guarantee success. They may get the sale sometimes, and other times they don’t. It’s impossible to know why they didn’t sell, so coaching is challenging.
If the manager does not provide a transparent selling system for the sales team, players will miss out on opportunities that their competitors have.
Failure #5: Ineffective hiring processes. Your ability to make the right decision will be limited by your gut feelings and speculation during the selection process. Effective hiring systems are just as important as having a sales system that your sales team can follow.
To help you find the best salespeople, we provide detailed assessment tools and expert analysis.
Sales managers must make the right hiring decisions for new salespeople. Without a process that uses objective measurements, it’s easy to make poor hiring decisions.
Failing #6: Lack of understanding of the concept of coaching. A sales manager who sees himself strictly as a manager can be easily driven by administrative tasks such as spreadsheets and administration.
A sales coach or selling coach works with salespeople to help them develop in their individual areas. They also strategize with them to make complex deals work for them. They provide feedback and course corrections before the month ends to prevent them from falling behind.
It’s a fact I will repeat. It is difficult to manage sales. You can reap the benefits of a highly successful sales team if you invest your time and energy ineffective sales management training and an efficient salesperson assessment process.