Are your Sales Manager’s properly utilized to reinforce the Go to Market Strategy?  Why do so many Sales Managers miss quota? There is a myriad of excuses as to why Sales Managers miss their number.  Quota is too big, too many direct reports, not enough training, wrong talent, not enough leads, etc.  The number one factor is job corruption and misallocation of time.  Sales Managers typically spend 45% of their time on administrative tasks, internal meetings, and forecasting.  Knowing this, the remaining 55% of time must be laser focused on developing their direct reports.


Conversely, some may argue that the Sales Manager is the best sales resource and should therefore use a portion of this time to close big deals.  In other words, your Sales Manager should have some “Super Rep” responsibilities.  This strategy is focused on driving short-term revenue.


Typically, one Sales Manager oversees somewhere between 6 and 10 sales resources.  The multiplier effect of transferring knowledge to those resources is much more impactful than trying to be a Super Rep.  It is also a more sustainable approach.  If the Sales Manager leaves the position, so does the knowledge and skills he or she possesses.  Transferring knowledge leads to consistent long-term results and helps create a bench within the sales team for future promotion opportunities.


Below is an example of the activities a front line Sales Manager role should be performing on a monthly basis and the competencies required to be an effective leader and coach.


 Sales Management Monthly Activities:


Sales Manager Cadence 


Leadership Competencies:


  1. Decision Quality
  2. Strategic Agility
  3. Conflict Management
  4. Action Oriented
  5. Intellectual Horsepower
  6. Building Effective Teams
  7. Integrity and Trust
  8. Personal Learning
  9. Peer Relationships
  10. Organizational Agility
  11. Dealing with Ambiguity


These leadership competencies should be assessed when filling Sales Manager roles.  Notice that they are not focused on the leader’s ability to sell, but instead focused on the interpersonal skills that translate to effective leadership and coaching skills.



Shift selling activities out of the Sales Manager role that are not focused on team development as part of your sales force structure plan.  Build a cadence that ensure Sales Managers are using multiple coaching and training touch points to develop their teams. 


Once you assess a leader’s competencies and define the role properly you need a process to onboard new leaders.


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Scott Gruher

Orchestrates and designs the perfect project strategy, one engagement at a time, to ensure that every SBI client makes their number.

Scott joined SBI in 2010 with years of hands-on experience in sales leadership and enterprise selling. Since his arrival, he has helped dozens of organizations dramatically accelerate growth, from Fortune 10 organizations like Phillips 66 to fast-growing cloud service organizations like InfusionSoft. Scott specializes in cross-functional alignment. He helps leaders align around the growth goal and design the right processes to bring the strategy to life. His unique combination of real world experience and a pragmatic approach to problem solving have made him one of SBI’s most demanded resources.

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