What are the Sales Management Essentials and how do we master them? Well firstly, sales management and leadership is not about selling!
In fact, when one examines the role of the modern sales leader it quickly becomes evident that there just isn’t time to sell.
Equipping sales leaders to perform the tasks for which they are responsible and sustaining the momentum of the sales force in its drive for incremental value and volume, at the same time as continuously improving the customer experience, is a challenge that demands a high degree of maturity, dedication, focus and extraordinary leadership skills.
Tragically, many sales managers are promoted to this crucial role without the training and development that this demanding role requires. Too often these managers end up as little more than highly paid “super salespeople“.
The brutal facts in today’s world of sales management:
- Sales leaders are given very little or no support when it comes to being a competent, effective sales managers.
- In most instances the majority continue to learn their craft by observing their managers and then replicating both the strengths and faults.
- Today’s sales mangers perpetuate the mistakes of their managers.
- Few sales leaders receive formal training in “sales management” practices – either before or during their tenure.
- Sales management training happens less than annually or not at all.
- Even where sales leadership is relatively mature, managers do not know what standards to use to coach and develop their teams.
The sureness of our success:
- If sales managers are more frequently and better trained and coached themselves, their sales teams achieve higher performance and results.
- No other type of sales training has a more positive correlation between frequency of training and sales performance.
Whilst much is made of the role of sales leaders as coaches, little attention is given to the other crucial roles performed by effective sales leaders, beyond coaching and/or themselves being “super sales/relationship people”.
With more than 40 years field research and experience observing and addressing sales and sales leadership challenges, Barrett has been able to highlight eight fundamental functions of sales leadership which provide sales managers with the knowledge, skills, confidence and competence to:
- Define sales strategy and see to its implementation
- Develop, implement and monitor sales systems
- Inculcate sales disciplines that support a performance culture
- Stimulate innovation and change
- Select and build sales teams
- Train, teach and coach sales teams
- Facilitate territory management plans that support strategy
These eight Sales Management Essentials are:
1. Creating and managing sales systems, processes and protocols
2. Supporting the sales effort and instilling disciplines
3. Developing and managing sales strategies
4. Stimulating and managing change
5. Managing sales performance, budgets and targets
6. Sustaining commitment to the organization
7. Developing, training and coaching
8. Selecting sales team members and stimulating individual talent
Sales management and leadership is a multifaceted role. Mastering these eight functions is not easy. However, raising awareness and making these functions visible is the first step to sales management and sales leadership mastery. Let’s get these topics in the sales leadership agenda and stop selling and start getting sales management fit.
Remember, everybody lives by selling something.
PS: If you are interested in attending the Sales Management Essentials 5 day intensive workshop from April 15-19 please contact us to book your place.
Who is it for? Barrett Sales Management Essentials is designed for sales managers and people moving into a role in sales management who want to ensure they are current with sales management best practice. Until now no single program has provided sales leaders with a complete curriculum of sales management and leadership skills and techniques.
Participants will leave this unique workshop with an entire portfolio of skills, systems and competencies, including how to:
- create an effective sales strategy that supports the organisation’s focus;
- develop, map and monitor territory plans;
- profile what characteristics are required in salespeople and then how to interview and staff the sales operation;
- introduce sales systems that enhance productivity and establish reward mechanisms to inspire top level performance;
- manage under-performing salespeople, map customer, account, new business development and prospecting strategies and skills;
- effective solution selling skills; including questioning, listening, analysis, problem solving, solutions development, influencing, integrating and closing.