Experienced sales managers understand what it takes to successfully lead a team of salespeople. Keep reading to learn their eight success tips.
The heart of every sales team is its manager. Sales managers play a critical role in the success of their teams. As a sales manager, you could make or break your company’s profits. Though this is a heavy weight to have on your shoulders, it should only motivate you to do better—to be better.
To help you become the best sales manager your organization has ever seen, follow these eight success tips from experienced sales managers.
If you’ve just moved up from salesperson to sales manager, you’re going to have to learn to not be as greedy with your time anymore. You can’t closely guard your calendar to focus solely on selling. You need to be far more generous with your time now. You need to give your team members individualized attention, through one-on-one coaching, in order to succeed as a manager and help your team get better and stronger. Invest your time in your team, and you’ll see great results.
If your salespeople are wasting the majority of their time on administrative tasks like manually entering contact information, creating spreadsheets, and creating reports, they’ll have less time to sell. The best sales managers provide their teams with the tools they need to succeed. This might come in the form of a customer relationship management program, free online tools, or anything else that will make them more efficient.
Having a proven, repeatable sales process that leads to wins is always a great way to help your salespeople succeed. However, an overly regimented, complex sales process will only confuse and frustrate your sales reps, and tie their hands so they’re not free to think outside of the box to get the hard wins. Your sales process should allow for some guided flexibility, which will help your dynamic team of salespeople close deals in the ways that work for them.
In the past, sales and marketing were largely separate departments that didn’t need to work together to see results. But with the rise of inbound marketing and selling, nothing could be further from the truth. Great sales managers understand that these two departments must work closely in order to generate and qualify leads, create relevant and valuable content, and pass off prospects that are ready to buy in the most streamlined way possible.
Amazing sales managers don’t become successful in their roles by chance. They work hard to continuously improve. And an important part of this is to accept feedback. Constructive criticism might be difficult to hear, but it can help you improve as a manager.
Sales managers won’t get anywhere without trust. It is the cornerstone of sales as well as the cornerstone of managing salespeople. Your team will be more willing to follow your lead if they trust and respect you, not only as a manager, but as a person, too. Lead by example, behave ethically, promote transparency, keep commitments, demonstrate consideration, and create an open and honest environment that is built on trust.
Be committed to finding the best talent available in your industry. Never settle for mediocre candidates for any reason, like being rushed or having a limited supply of applicants to choose from—you’ll only be forced to deal with the repercussions of those decisions later on. The best sales managers know that having great salespeople makes managing them so much easier.
Winning is fun. You might be busy, stressed, and nearing deadlines, but you can’t forget to celebrate your sales team’s wins. Don’t wait too long before rewarding good work. You can never celebrate enough—small wins deserve little celebrations, too. When your salespeople feel valued and appreciated, their motivation and productivity will increase.
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 daughters, BBQing on a hot summer day and tropical vacations.