Being a Director of Sales and having dealt with sales management myself, I’ve learned a couple things on what I like and dislike about sales management. There are certain parts of sales management that no one likes that can’t be avoided, things like hammering your reps to input information into the CRM and to update their pipeline. The purpose of a sales manager though is to remove obstacles and free up your reps time to sell more, not to micro manage them. Below are the top 3 things I’ve learned from my perspective as an individual contributor and as a manager.
Your reps are adults, treat them as such.
Even if you’re managing a junior sales team, you’re paying your reps good money because you believe they can generate pipeline and close business. Don’t be the manager who asks for constant updates on deals and constantly chimes in with feedback. Your reps will grow to resent you and some things need to be learned through mistakes.
Don’t have meetings just to have them.
My biggest pet peeve as an individual contributor is when management would have a team meeting or have a 1 on 1 just because it was already scheduled on the calendar or because it’s near end of quarter. If you have a team of 5 reps, and you hold a weekly hour long team meeting, that winds up being a total of 2 business days (20 hours) worth of time where your reps could be closing business.
Don’t forget why you were hired.
Management has 3 responsibilities in my opinion. Mentor/develop talent, create efficient processes to maximize rep productivity, and to ultimately increase revenue. Even if you have a senior sales team, there are always things they can learn and there are always ways you can remove internal obstacles to free up their time. Keep that in mind!
I could probably list another 20 things to keep in mind as a sales manager, but those are the top 3 things in my opinion. If you have any questions for me please feel free to message me on LinkedIn.