As a sales manager, you know that your job is not an easy one.
What you may not realize is that your effectiveness as a leader can make or break your sales team.
You face quite a bit of pressure every day, but you must still come in to work ready to lead your team to sales success.
Otherwise, their results may suffer, high turnover in the sales department is likely and your job and reputation as a manager could be in danger.
Do not let that happen. Instead, ask yourself:
How can I be a better sales manager?
If you are ready to learn how to be a great sales manager, read on to discover the 7 daily habits of highly effective sales managers so you and your team can thrive at work.
Top Habits of Highly Effective Sales Managers
1. Coach the team correctly.
It is one thing to coach your team – it is another thing to coach them correctly.
Instead of trying to force one sales method on everyone, you can be a highly effective sales manager by embracing the differences among your team members and allowing each of them to choose the selling method that works best for them personally.
By adapting your coaching style to fit each salesperson’s specific needs, you will build trust and show that you care about each salesperson’s individual approach to selling.
Not only should you offer regular coaching – make sure you offer frequent sales training to underperformers as well. That may be all they need to boost their sales results significantly!
2. Practice accountability.
The best sales managers do not just hold their salespeople accountable – they hold themselves accountable too.
Because, at the end of the day, your management has a huge effect on the results of your sales team. If you inspire them, coach them correctly and create a healthy team environment, they will likely excel.
On the other hand, if you spend more time micromanaging than leading, fail to develop your team’s skills and distance yourself from your salespeople, their performance will be much more likely to suffer.
3. Communicate effectively.
To be a highly effective sales manager, you must communicate with your team regularly. If you do not, how can you expect to set the right expectations, track their progress and motivate them?
It is simple: you cannot.
So, make sure you keep the lines of communication open.
It is not enough for you to be your team’s boss – you must also be their mentor, continually inspiring them to perform better. If they never see or hear from you, that will not happen.
4. Create a positive work environment.
Have you ever worked somewhere so terrible that you absolutely dreaded clocking in every day?
Most people have at some point. If you have, then you probably do not look back on those times fondly – no one likes working when they spend the entire day counting down the minutes until they can leave.
Now, answer this question:
Does your sales team dread clocking in to work every day?
If you answered “yes,” you have a major problem on your hands – you are failing to create a top-selling sales culture.
The good news is that you can start practicing these habits to improve the culture and your team’s sales results:
- Be transparent. Whether things are good or bad, you need to let your salespeople know. They will appreciate your honesty and be more motivated to work hard for you because of it.
- Boost morale and competitiveness. Driven salespeople are inherently competitive, so a great way to boost their morale while encouraging better sales results is to hold a sales contest.
- Delegate responsibility when appropriate. Delegate an important task, like heading a meeting, to a salesperson you trust to do the job right. That salesperson will appreciate your confidence in herand will enjoy a new challenge to tackle during her work day. Just make sure you do not use this as an excuse to neglect your responsibilities!
Remember – while fun perks like office ping-pong tables and weekly lunch outings might help your company culture a bit, no perks can take the place of an effective leader who exhibits the traits of a good sales manager.
5. Streamline processes.
While highly effective sales managers should not completely change the sales process daily, they should think about ways to make their team’s job easier every day.
After all, your team’s productivity affects their ability to achieve top sales results. So, if their process is slowing them down, they are being hindered from reaching their full potential.
…But how do you determine what is slowing your team down?
That’s an easy one: ask them.
Once you learn about the complexities of their current sales process and the tasks that frustrate them, you can work on automating those tasks or developing a new process altogether.
Just make sure you do not over-engineer the sales process – you do not want your team’s productivity to take a hit just for the sake of making a change.
6. Do not just manage – lead.
Everyone has had a bad boss at some point. You know the type – they simply give out orders and judge their employees based solely on metrics, never taking the time to truly help anyone succeed.
Do not be that kind of boss when you are managing a sales team.
Instead, actively engage your salespeople daily, setting them up for success by providing them with the resources they need to work effectively and motivating them to sell more each day.
Remember, while sales metrics and deadlines can be used to drive better performance, it is often much more effective to lead, coach and inspire your team on a daily basis.
7. Use technology strategically whenever possible.
Technology has come a long way in recent years– computers and gadgets can allow your team to work faster and handle tasks much more easily than they could just decades ago!
Make no mistake – it is incredibly important for you to harness the power of technology and to allow your team to do the same.
Here are a few examples of ways you can strategically use technology to you and your team’s advantage:
- Sales automation – Which tasks are your salespeople handling that are taking up too much of their time… time they could be spending selling? Find out and automate those tasks.
- Cloud computing – No longer must a salesperson be at their workstation to access critical data. By using the cloud for storage (as opposed to physical storage devices), you empower your team to work from anywhere.
- Sales personality tests – Take the guesswork out of hiring with a sales personality test that will allow you to build a Driven sales team, fully capable of achieving top results.
These are not the only ways you can use technology to your advantage, so make a point to conduct your own research and think of new ways to help your team. This kind of proactive thinking is part of what makes a good sales manager.
When you follow these habits, keep in mind that consistency is what makes a good sales manager. It is not enough for you to strive for greatness only sometimes – you must show up ready to lead your team to success every day.
So, go ahead – start implementing these habits when you work and you can feel confident knowing that you are increasing your effectiveness as a sales manager.