The Secrets To Be A Successful Sales ManagerThe Secrets To Be A Successful Sales Manager

The problem starts day one and the situation is nearly always the same. A new sales manager, fresh from the sales pit, takes over a business development team and, instinctively they begin to coach and mentor the sales representatives in the same way that their old sales manager taught them - to become better sales people.

The aforementioned "status quo" management and teaching method sometimes leads to higher numbers. Regardless, sometimes the numbers unexpectedly fall.

What many don't realize is that this fluctuation in sales performance, whether it be positive or negative is mainly due to external forces that have nothing to do with the sales manager. After all, is the sales manager teaching something that groundbreaking? The answer is: only in very rare cases.

The majority of the time, this increase or decrease in revenue stream is entirely dependent on the economy, the competitive landscape or a corporate marketing initiative that either hits or bombs. As those in the sciences will remind you, correlation doesn't necessarily imply causation.

Yes. There are those who proved this thesis wrong, but they are the ones who are now giving $100,000 per hour motivational lectures at the Mirage in Las Vegas.

Armed with this knowledge, as a new sales manager, there are some tactics that could be used to better control the revenue output from your sales team instead of waiting to see whether the next Golden Arches is going to come out of the marketing department.

Here are three ways how:

Train the Team to Think Like Business Professionals, Not Sales Pros

Stop wasting your time teaching the sales team various rebuttals that are scripted and transparent to the educated buyer. Instead, teach your sales team about business. You can't hunt deer standing in an open field with a Yankees cap talking on your cell phone.

If your sales team does not think like their prey, they are going to go hungry. Teach your sales force what a CFO does all day and what his or her common concerns are and you should get further than teaching them very basic, transparent negotiation techniques.

Train the Team to Not Worry About Their Competition

If your sales team loves the competition so much, they should go work for them. You must instill confidence in your sales force. For a sales force to do something truly great, they must be in tandem. Think of their cohesion like an offensive line.

The moment you let them one member of the sales team obsess over what the others their perceived competitive space is the moment that you, the quarterback get sacked. It has happened twice in the past month that someone in our office received an email from another staffing agency telling us we are evil.

While most would post that on the office wall as a trophy, just delete it from the inbox and get on with the day. If your sales members are spending more than 35 seconds a week studying a competitor's product or service, questions should be asked.

Train the Team to be the Best In the Business

The third way to gain better control of your sales numbers and your sales team's performance is to make it an undying goal to make your team the best in the business. This means driving even when you're not driven.

As a sales manager, you are only human and some days you'll have to drag yourself out of bed, however that is no excuse to hide. Keep focus, suck it up and continually make your sales team better. If you aim to have the best sales team in the business and put your mind to it, even if you come up a tad short, you're still in the top 3%.
by Ken Sundheim
References and Bibliography
Ken Sundheim runs a sales and marketing recruitment agency with multiple divisions including, San Francisco recruiters: Sales Management Headhunters San Francisco Recruiters and DC Marketing Recruiters Marketing Headhunters Washington DC Sales Recruiters
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