When you’re a sales manager, it’s your job to provide the sales reps with resources, guidance, and motivation. They need these things to help them grow as sales reps, which will directly influence the success of your business. However, you can’t become a great manager overnight. Instead, this process takes a lot of time and effort. You’ll learn from all your failures and you’ll need to break a habit or two to get there. But if you have to learn from failure, why can’t it be someone else’s? We have plenty of experience on our own, so we thought about sharing with you some of the key lessons for sales managers.
Depending on who you talk to, you’ll get different answers about the most important thing you should know. Some people will tell you that saying NO to a client is the most important thing you need to learn to do. Others will focus on managing the network of employees and prospects. However, the most important lesson of all is to rely on the experiences of others. This will make it possible to avoid any mistakes that you might have made otherwise.
What are the challenges of being a sales manager?
If you’re only starting as a sales manager, congratulations. It’s an exciting job that can bring you plenty of joy. But, you’ll also face a lot of challenges. And that’s something you need to prepare for. If your business owner wants to learn how to increase website sales, you’re the person they’ll come to. And the same goes for pretty much any other sales-related problem. You’re the ”guy” for it. And that might sound scary, but you have nothing to be afraid of.
The longer you do your job, the more you’ll learn. It’s the same as with any other position. With time, you’ll become an expert, and you’ll handle anything they can throw at you with ease. And to help you get there sooner, here are some things you should know about:
Prioritize your tasks
The first thing you should learn is to make a balance. With a better job and higher salary, you get more responsibilities. There’s no secret here. You knew that when you signed up. But, if you’re new in all of it, you’ll have to find a way to balance the time you spend on dealing with clients, internal operations, and training tasks.
You see, when you’re an inside sales rep, you have a couple of clients at a time. You strategize and dial for them, and it all goes smoothly. However, when you become a manager, you pretty much get ten more clients to deal with. So, there’s a lot to think about and many reports to fill. Hence, time management and prioritization are the key things you need to focus on.
The trick here is to stay organized. You can’t afford to drop the ball at any time. Try to keep track of your reps weekly and meet with them as many times as necessary. It also helps to keep an open-door policy. If your subordinates can seek help whenever they need it, their workflow will be much better. And that will bring the efficiency of the whole team-up.
Delegate as much as you can
The second of the key lessons for sales managers is almost the opposite of the first one. Similar to how your sales reps will need some help and guidance from you, all the chances are that you’ll need help from someone else. So, you must learn how to delegate and not be afraid to ask for assistance when you’re not sure about how to do something.
For instance, you might notice that many people visit your site, but not many of them buy from you. This is a clear signal that you have a problem with the high bounce rate. But it’s not your job to know how to lower website bounce rate. Instead, talk to a colleague and try to find a way to fix it.
The ”if you want something done right, do it yourself” approach doesn’t do well here. As a matter of fact, it can only hurt your career. So, feel free to delegate client tasks to the right inside sales reps. This will empower them and motivate them to get a new skill set. They’ll think more critically about their performance and clients. And that’s exactly what you want to see.
Make sales training fluid
As a sales manager, you’ll need to train new employees. Now, this is an interesting but also a tedious task. The thing is that everyone is unique. So, every new employee will have their own way of how they like to be trained. We’ve been through plenty of trial and error, and we came up with a simple solution.
Let your team dictate the intensity of training for a day or two
If you let the reps be in charge of it, you’ll get a feel of their level of engagement. You’ll see how much they care for the job and what they think their weaknesses and strengths are. For example, some of them will need time to adjust to click-to-call service for website, and some will get right into it. They might even have some valuable insights to give you. And you should never skip a chance to improve client engagements if you can.
It’s up to you to influence and guide your team
And the final lesson probably is the biggest one of them all. Whether you like it or not, your inside sales team’s morale will mimic your own. So, the more stressed you feel, the more impact that will have on them. If you show that you’re frustrated with a client, they’ll feel the same. It’s a thing of human psychology, and there’s nothing you can do about it.
As a manager, you want to be a source of positivity. You should support your team, and you want them to feel that. Therefore, try to leave any negative emotions you have at the door. It’s not easy to do this, but you’ll get used to it. And when you do, you’ll enjoy coming to work as it will be your safe place where everything is nice. And that feeling will rub off on your team as well. So, you’ll all be working in harmony.
These are some of the key lessons for sales managers. But don’t think that this is all there is. You’ll have plenty more things to learn, and some of them will be specific to the job you’re doing. Don’t be afraid of it, and you’ll be just fine.
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