What is the role of a Sales Manager

At NEALABC we believe a professional Sales Manager is the critical component of an effective and focused sales organization.

If the Sales Managers are the key, what is their role? What are vital few things they do vs. the trivial many?

This is a controversial subject and room for varying opinions. The following are 10 generally accepted roles and responsibilities.

  • Planning
  • Training
  • Tracking
  • Managing
  • Coaching
  • Motivating
  • Analyzing
  • Performance Development
  • Career Development
  • Hiring

Wow a comprehensive list, can any one person do all these things? In theory perhaps but who has all these skills and abilities? Where do you get the biggest bang for your sales management buck?

We believe the top four are:

  • Hiring the right people for the right reasons
  • Planning each sales professional’s objectives, goals, and critical activities
  • Tracking performance and accountability
  • Coaching each sales professional one on one for improvement

This is not to imply that the other 6 listed are not important, but rather performance will not be optimized if the four critical roles are not consistently applied.

We often find Sales Managers will overplay the analytics, charts, graphs, % etc.

Or they stay removed from the day to day action in the field. In other words what is really happening as each sales professional competes in the marketplace.

The ebbs and flows of dealing with the changing landscape that each customer or targeted prospect presents is mind boggling. This reality cannot be translated to numbers and statistics from afar.

The coaching focal points are derived from the reason the person was hired (strengthens and minor strengthens), their assigned objectives and goals, and the tracking of their individual performance metrics.

Coaching is a “contact sport” predicated on a working rapport with each sales professional. The biggest bang for the sales management bucks is a personal and in-depth involvement by the sales manager with their sales professionals. This is manifested by consistent and focused one on one coaching.

Issues must be addressed case by case by a savvy sales manager that knows how to work with the various skills and personalities of each sales professional.

Finding a highly trained and effective Sales Manager is time well spent!

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