Why Do So Many Sales Managers Bail Out Of The Job?

The answer to this question is pretty simple, they hate it! Geez, the shortest post in the history of posts. Obviously, there is more to it than that. There are nuances to the sales management job that are seldom communicated to the new sales manager. Why? Because no one understands the nuances enough to teach the salesperson.

Imagine the frustration if you were all of a sudden given the responsibility for organizing a golf tournament and you had never golfed or organized an event. What if someone came to you and said that they wanted you to become involved in Big Brothers and you had never had siblings or kids. What if you were asked to donate time to a charity that required 10 hours a week. There is a thread here. The thread is that you would be required to give a lot of yourself and your time.

This is one of the reasons that so many new sales managers fail or decide that the job is not for them. And, there are the ones who never leave the job, performing poorly but who continue thinking that the job is about them and not the salespeople. Herein lies the real issue. New sales managers like the perks of the job but they do not always like to give so much of themselves to the job. So, what do I mean by giving?

Sales managers have the responsibility to help others reach their full potential as salespeople. That does not happen by telling someone how their selling mistakes cost the company X dollars. Developing salespeople requires patience, time, an in depth knowledge of sales, coaching skills, and a strong desire to see others not only succeed in their jobs but to see them excel and become stars. This scenario does not happen unless you are dedicated to the philosophy of sharing what you know with others.

This does not just happen in the monday morning sales meeting. The ‘giving’ stuff happens in the field when you are working with a salesperson, it happens when you’re coaching the rep about their sales behavior plan, it happens around dinner time when your west coast rep calls to discuss a sales call he or she was just on, it happens whenever there is a need for a consultative connection with a salesperson.

Here are my final two bits of wisdom. Sales management also requires subtlety because one rep may require different “fine tuning” than another. Understanding this is part of the nuance of managing. Wisdom bit two is, if you can’t do any of the above hire someone else to do it.

(Lest you think I’m some kind of mushh-headed wussbag I’m not! I’ve laid into my share of salespeople when the need arose. Treat your salespeople like your customers and you will achieve the above.)

The Final Thought:     I Like this quote I dislike this quoteWe give advice by the bucket, but take it by the grain.” William R Alger


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