Why effective sales management training is crucial to your business success
You have the ideal candidate in mind for that vacant Sales Manager role: a successful and experienced senior sales rep with intelligence and people skills that understands your business, products and services inside-out. As they're clearly suited and ready to step into a management role, you're confident that your chosen candidate can hit the ground running, knows everything and that, in their case, sales management training is an unnecessary budgetary expense. That could be a big mistake.
Whilst your confidence in this person's ability in sales might be totally justified, sales management is a different proposition altogether. Developing the sales team for success is a fundamental aspect of a sales manager's role, but if your new appointee doesn't know how to effectively handle staff development, mentoring, performance management and teambuilding, they are likely to retreat to the comfort and safety of what they do best: selling.
The consequences for your sales team could be disastrous. Lacking effective sales management training, an unprepared sales manager may be unable to set appropriate individual and team performance targets. Unequipped with the skills to develop each member of their sales team they may focus their attentions only on the best performers, leaving other members to their own devices. Feeling undervalued or overlooked, sales team members that don't receive attention and coaching from their sales manager are apt to lose morale and begin underperforming.
Whilst this is happening the untrained sales manager, lacking a strategic plan of action for developing their team and monitoring performance, becomes reactive rather than proactive. Rather than using their knowledge and experience to empower the sales team to deal with problems that arise, the untrained sales manager may attempt to take on and resolve these problems themselves in the belief that this is improving an increasingly difficult situation.
Ultimately, this scenario can only end badly for the new sales manager, their team and for the business as a whole. The lesson to be learned is that a highly-effective sales person does not automatically equal a highly-effective sales manager; the two disciplines, whilst related, are entirely different.
Certainly it makes sense to promote a senior sales representative who has good field experience to the role of Sales Manager but this must be done in tandem with providing effective, structured sales training that is focused upon providing the competencies required to achieve the desired business results.
The success or failure of any sales team is largely down to the performance of the Sales Manager which is why, at Maguire Training, we base our sales training courses around the sale management function, to ensure that both managers and their teams are properly equipped for success.