Nothing can sabotage a sales department quite like a revolving door of lacklustre sales managers. It can be difficult to keep a team encouraged and motivated without a strong, enduring presence in the managerial chair, and seeing a shifting set of goals every few months does nothing for morale. When it comes time to hire a new sales manager you have to do it right the first time.
But that begs the question: what makes a great sales manager? In order to learn how to hire and keep the best sales manager, you should know what you are looking for. A great sales manager is one who can alternately manage a team’s work, mentor them toward greater success, motivate them through rough patches, and be able to address each of their team members’ unique weaknesses and strengths. To do all this takes patience and experience. It takes emotional and strategic acumen. It takes a sales manager that knows their way around relevant KPIs and is able to track progress and give feedback accordingly.
To find all of those attributes reliably in a single manager is no easy feat, which is why when you want to fill sales manager jobs it is imperative to turn to a sales recruitment agency with a strong commitment to candidate assessment. Definitely do not choose just a general job recruitment agency – they won’t have the niche knowledge and connections to help you. Find a sales recruitment agency with a large database that assesses candidates based on a number of criteria, encompassing both hard and soft skills. With a role as important as sales manager, you want the closest thing to a sure bet you can get, and working with a sales recruitment agency eliminates many of the risks of hiring internally.
When you have finally settled on your perfect sales manager, a new consideration presents itself: how do you keep that person? For starters, you have to trust your new hire and hand over an amount of authority commensurate to their position; that means allowing them to do their thing without needlessly second guessing their methods. You hired them for a reason, so let them show you that reason in action. Another way to make new sales managers feel comfortable and welcome is, ironically, by borrowing a couple of the attributes that make a great sales manager – that is, setting realistic goals and creating for them an environment within which they can grow. Let them know what is expected of them, and follow up if expectations aren’t being met.
If everything goes right, you will be rewarded with a sales manager who has a real, lasting impact on their team’s commitment, personality and revenue potential. You will be rewarded with coordinated sales operations that will shape and improve your business in the long term. And best of all you will be rewarded with a leader in whom you can put your trust. The best sales managers are out there – it’s just a matter of finding them.