Sales managers share many responsibilities with other functional managers. Many roles are available to them: coach, counselor, teacher, expert, and customer relationship manager. While each position requires different skills, there are three essential qualities that can be used for all of them. These qualities are necessary for any sales manager to be successful.
The most effective managers have compassion. They are able to relate to customers, to their sales team, as well as to those around them. They are able to listen to what others feel and help them solve their problems. This is the essence and purpose of sales: assisting people in finding solutions to their problems. Selling is easier if you have a product or service that solves the problem. You will succeed in sales if you are able to find them and relate to their problems. This is where empathy comes in.
Great sales managers are passionate about competition.
They love to be challenged and to win. They thrive on competition, but good sales managers make it a positive experience for themselves and others around them. They aren’t prone to a “take no prisoners” attitude or a “win at any cost” mentality. They help others achieve their goals. They are winners because they help others, their customers, and their sales team. They quickly recover from defeat and recommit to the challenge. However, they celebrate winning to keep their winning streak alive.
Great people are quick to learn. They adapt quickly to changing environments and the challenges they face. Many things are constantly changing: new products, new competition, new team members and bosses, as well as new technology. Great sales managers are quick to assess what is new and then figure out how to make the most of it. This quality is known as “learning agility” and is a hallmark for all great leaders.
While sales managers may have other characteristics, they are essential to their core functions. They will struggle to relate to others if they lack empathy. They will not be able to achieve their sales targets if they lack a competitive streak. They will also be left behind if they don’t learn agility. These three qualities are essential for sales managers. Learn how to master them. These qualities will help you become the manager you have always wanted to be.
Leonard Kloeber, an author and a leadership consultant. As a former military officer and business executive, he has extensive leadership experience. He is a leader in many small and large organizations. He was most recently a human resource executive in a Fortune 100 company. Victory Principles: Leadership Lessons From D-Day in his book. It illustrates seven leadership principles that every leader uses.