3 years ago
January 5, 2015

3 Steps to Becoming a Great Sales Leader

A great sales leader makes their team cohesive while allowing each member individual success. Here are 3 steps to becoming a great sales leader.

Rhys Metler

Every team is made up of a group of individuals, all with different talents, who, together, help make the team successful. If the team is unmotivated and disorganized, they will not be successful. It is up to the leader of the team to get the group focused and working together while at the same time maximizing the skills of each individual. This is the role of a sales leader. A great sales leader will be able to do this and make the team cohesive while allowing each member individual success. There are 3 steps to becoming a great sales leader.

Remember your Role

Chances are you were moved to a position of leadership due to your own success. Sales success and sales leader success are two very different things. You are no longer responsible for your quota, you are responsible for everyone’s quota.

Be self aware and conscious of your own attitude. You want to be proactive, positive and approachable.

Think of yourself as a coach. Get to know each person, focus on their individual strengths, weaknesses and motivators. Now your focus is your team success, not your individual success. You need to be there for the team because your goal is to help them succeed. You will succeed by letting your team know that you are there for them, that your time is their time. Your job is to provide the team with the tools they will need to be successful.

Communicate with your Team

Translate your sales style and success into a message. Break your style down into a procedural method and let your team know how it helped you succeed. Develop and communicate your personal vision for the team. Keep it simple and focused. It always helps a team to know where their leader is focused and what is expected of each team member. Expectations need to be specific and unambiguous. Everyone on the team should completely understand the role that they, and every team member, are playing to win.

In the words of General Colin Powell, “Great leaders are almost always great simplifiers, who can cut through argument, debate and doubt to offer a solution everybody can understand.”

Have an open door policy and have regular, meaningful meetings. Nothing is worse than dry meetings that focus only on numbers. Always ask for input and ideas and be open to any feedback you might receive. Some of the best ideas come from some of the most unexpected sources.

Always remember that at least 50% of communication is listening. A person who does not feel heard or understood by their sales leader is not going to be successful. An important part of any team is the shared input from all team members.

Remember that Sales Management is different from Sales Leadership

Dwight D. Eisenhower once said “Leadership is the art of getting someone else to do something you want done because HE wants to do it.”

Leadership is about planning a strategy and setting a vision for the team. Leadership focuses on the success of the group in the short and long term. Sales managers allow themselves to get bogged down in the daily crunch of numbers and tasks. Leadership forges a path to a successful future.

Rhys Metler

Rhys is a tenacious, top performing Senior Sales Recruiter with 11+ years of focused experience in the Digital Media, Mobile, Software, Technology and B2B verticals. He has a successful track record of headhunting top performing sales candidates for some of the most exciting brands in North America. He is a Certified Recruitment Specialist (CRS) and has expert experience in prospecting new business, client retention/renewals and managing top performing sales and recruitment teams. Rhys enjoys spending quality time with his wife, son, and two daughters, BBQing on a hot summer day, tropical vacations and cottaging.