Descriptions of sales management include planning and implementing sales programs within an organization, as well as managing sales teams. A sales manager's primary responsibility is to administer successful marketing plans that effectively contribute to achieving organizational goals. Similar job descriptions and responsibilities apply to careers such as marketing executives, district managers and product line administrators.
Sales management includes understanding the importance of sales and monitoring and explaining market trends to sales personnel. Sales managers provide direct supervision to salespeople and are responsible for salespeople learning and implementing any and all company sales methodologies and initiatives. Sales managers must understand and clearly communicate sales budgets, their significance and what they mean to each salesperson.
Sales managers create sales team structures. Common sales team structures include sales managers, assistant sales managers, team leaders and sales personnel. All employees must clearly understand their responsibilities and what's expected of them in terms of performance as well as how to accomplish their assigned duties. Sales managers help sales personnel understand their place in sales departments as well as organizations as a whole.
Sales managers develop and implement sales strategies. Sales managers identify and assign sales territories, plan product promotions and design or obtain sales tools such as posters and printed literature. Moreover, sales managers create sales campaigns, which include direct mailers and telephone solicitation. Sales managers set organizational standards for customer service and building customer loyalty.
Effectively hiring salespeople is among the most critical characteristics of sales management. Recruiting top sales performers, as well as those with star potential, is an ongoing, constant process -- every organization has room for more successful salespeople. Sales managers must work at maximizing their hiring skills, including conducting quality interviews and identifying potentially successful salespeople.
Sales managers must effectively train their sales team. How to implement sales techniques, such as qualifying prospects; how to build product value; and how to close deals are all key components of effective sales training. Sales personnel must learn effective time management, because top-performing salespeople consistently invest their time actively engaged in activities that directly produce income.
Sales managers must identify what motivates sales team members and design selling strategies accordingly. Interpersonal communication and relationship building skills are required, as sales managers must help salespeople create energy and gain momentum during times when they're struggling. Motivational techniques include group recognition, financial rewards and valuable prizes for outstanding sales performance.