Being a sales manager involves activities that range from setting goals and training sales people, to analysing data and introducing new technologies. Beyond this, it is also about leading and guiding a team of sales representatives, and inspiring them to reach their full potential.
So, what does it take to become a 5-star sales manager? Here are 5 things you need to do:
1. You need to provide ongoing coaching
To drive sales performance, the sales manager needs to provide ongoing coaching to help the sales representatives improve and to help them reach their potential. This means the sales manager needs to have the right coaching skills. Staff turnover in a sales environment is usually high, and ongoing coaching can help to reduce this high turnover by improving job satisfaction.
2. You need to recognise achievements and good work
To ensure that morale does not suffer, and to ensure that sales representatives stay motivated, sales managers need to recognise achievements. Recognising individual and team achievements will also help to boost confidence and to create an environment that encourages excellence. The sales manager therefore needs to track achievements and acknowledge these. This will inspire the sales representatives to keep working hard.
3. You need to be open to feedback
It is important for a sales manager to be open to receiving feedback from sales representatives. This will help to build relationships of trust and to keep the lines of communication open. By being open to feedback, the sales manager will also find opportunities to grow and improve. In addition, open communication encourages an honest working culture.
4. You need to embrace technology
A sales manager should stay up to date with relevant new technologies that become available. Finding new CRMs and other software, and figuring out how these can benefit the sales representatives and the company, can help the team to work more effectively and to drive growth in sales.
5. You need to be flexible and adaptable to change
Because a sales manager spends a lot of time finding and refining sales strategies and tactics, it is not easy to embrace change, but adaptability is an important characteristic in this role. Learning and teaching new and more effective techniques is an important part of growth for both the sales manager and the sales representatives. Factors such as technological advances and economic changes require the ability and willingness to adapt to stay relevant.
While it is important for the sales manager to ensure that the sales representatives meet targets, their role goes beyond the numbers. It is also about being a leader by offering feedback and being open to receiving it too. It is about giving credit where credit is due, and ensuring that the sales representatives receive the coaching they need to reach their full potential. All of these factors contribute to creating an environment that encourages excellence and that will help sales representatives stay motivated to continue producing good work.