Effective Sales Managers

 
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The role of the Sales Manager is integral to the success of most B2B businesses and yet after working with many businesses for over 20 years, we have found a common thread of a lack of preparation, training and support for those Sales Managers.

At its essence, the key issue is that most people do not have a clear understanding of exactly what the Sales Manager role entails.  The result being, many simply manage their team to the outcomes required therefore they concentrate on sales and profitability results, rather than lead, manage and coach the team (and each member individually) to the inputs that make up that result much like a sporting coach simply reacting to the results of each game rather than developing their team for future success.

Leading the team (or creating the 'right' environment) will ensure that each team member will thrive whilst the team works as one unit, thereby broadening and deepening the service capability and offering to the customer.

Some 'Leading' behaviors that are often overlooked are:

1. Sharing the company vision team members need to understand how the actions they take every day fit into a broader company picture.  It provides a sense of purpose which ultimately is a key component of their motivation and engagement.

2. Helping Team members do things differently as the markets in which they are operating are continually changing.  It's only natural that many individuals find changing their behaviors a real challenge - so support from their sales manager will assist them from slipping back to "the way we have always done it".

3. Setting clear plans for the Team (and each Team member) which align to the company's goals this will further assist team members to understand the purpose and importance of their role.

4. Show the way with respect to accountability We cannot expect team members to be accountable if management do not maintain their own standards whether it be timeliness to meetings deadlines or simply maintaining the scheduled one-on-one meetings with each Team member.  Team members do see the behaviors of their management and often use these standards as the baseline for their own behaviors.

Leading Behaviors of the Sales Manager are essential for creating an environment that drives high performance an environment where team members can become their own best coach!

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