In this video, learn about the three key differences between sales managers and sales people. Understand the difference between your old job and your new job. There are three big competencies you'll need. First, there's sales coaching–you can't simply tell your rep what you did, you must coach them on their performance. Then, there's executive communication—you must be more concise and strategic. Finally, there's industry acumen; you must understand where the market is going in the future.
- Before becoming a sales manager, you were probably a sales person, and you were probably a pretty good one. But here's the thing, being a great sales manager takes more than just having great sales skills. But don't let that scare you away. The most important piece in setting yourself up for success as a new sales manager is to understand how this role differs from your previous role and where you can actually add the most value for your team. So, first and foremost, one element of your new role is that of a coach.
So, I want to share a really important statistic with you, and this comes from salesforce.com. When sales straining is couple with field coaching, from the manager, sales productivity quadruples. Now, I want you to take that in. Whatever training your company offers, you as a coach have the power to quadruple your reps' results simply through sales coaching. Now, sales coaching doesn't mean that you're just going to go over your own killer close strategy, the thing that worked for you last year and just hope for the best.
No, as a coach, you're going to be out in the field with your people consistently, and you want to provide constructive feedback. You want to give them insight, you want to watch them carefully, you want to look at their skills, not just their results, but their actual behaviors. This is all part of the coaching process. Now, the second thing you need to be successful as a sales manager is to focus on your own communication. You're the boss now, so your emails, your phone calls, and your meetings, they're all under scrutiny, so you need to be concise, clear, and strategic.
See, you set the tone for how your team communicates with each other, and ultimately how they communicate with customers. So, now is when you need to start focusing on exactly what needs to be said and how can you say it in a way that people feel supported and they're also clear on exactly what they're supposed to do. And the last thing is, your world is about to get a whole lot bigger than just your office and your buyer's office. You see, as successful sales rep, you probably understood what your customers needed, but now, to be a successful sales manger, you're going to have to go wider and deeper.
Your team is going to be looking to you to know where's the market going in the future, what's changing, what's working, what's not working, what's on the horizon? So, when you focus on this aspect of sales management, it also enables you to be cued up for future senior leadership positions. Industry acumen, business acumen is a critical piece of being successful in this job and getting to the next job. So, when you're just starting out, three things: One, focus on coaching and invest the time in it.
Two, make sure you're providing concise, clear, supportive communication. And three, make sure you have business acumen beyond the buyer's office. These are the three areas you need to become a good sales manager quickly. And don't be overwhelmed by this. Being a sales manager is challenging, but you've got this. You would not be in this job if you were not capable of doing it.
- Understanding your role
- Setting the tone as manager
- Recruiting the right people
- Dealing with inherited bad talent
- Making sales meetings count
- Working with marketing, accounting, and product
- Communicating with senior leaders
- Dealing with failure