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Moving a Salesperson into Sales Management – How To Do It

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In this episode of the Sales Management Minute, learn the four discussion points when considering a salesperson for sales management.

Ahh… the lure of taking your top salesperson and making her the manager of the sales team. It’s the hard to resist temptation for so many executives…with the vision of a disciple selling strategy. “Have the six salespeople do what she did and we get six times the sales.” It’s a nice dream, but not one that often comes true.

While you are considering the rock star for management, she feels the urge for something more. However, sales is one of the few professions where top salespeople do not need to pursue a management role to advance their career. That said, if both parties want to explore the opportunity, there are four key discussion points to ensure the salesperson has eyes wide open for the venture.

• Do you know what the sales manager does? Salespeople perceive the sales manager role as glorious. However, anyone who has been in management for a day knows that perception and reality differ.

• You want a pay cut? In most companies, top salespeople out earn their sales managers. However, salespeople don’t necessarily know that.

• You want others to control your income? As a salesperson, she makes money based on her success. As a sales manager, she gets paid for her team’s success.

• You’re okay with your needs coming second? Salespeople are often focused on their needs. Sales managers need to think of the needs of the company, the team, the clientele holistically.

If after discussing these, there is still mutual interest. Take a step back and interview the candidate as you would an external one for the role. And, if you extend an offer, be sure you have an onboarding program to ensure your new sales manager is provided with the tools needed to excel in the role.

See you next time on the Sales Management Minute.

Lee B. Salz is a leading sales management strategist specializing in helping companies build scalable, high-performance sales organizations through hiring the right salespeople, effectively onboarding them, and aligning their sales activities with business objectives through process, metrics and compensation. He is the Founder and CEO of Sales Architects, Business Expert Webinars and The Revenue Accelerator. Lee has authored several books including award-winning,  best-seller “Hire Right, Higher Profits.” He is a results-driven sales management consultant and a passionate, dynamic speaker . Lee can be reached at lsalz@SalesArchitects.net or 763.416.4321.