Search for a sales Manager: down with stereotypes!
Many companies complain that it is difficult to find a good sales Manager. This is confirmed by the statistics of the website <url>.ru, for which even now the demand for sales managers remains quite high. However, the point here is not that there are no people, but perhaps in the approach of the employers themselves, who are often at the mercy of stereotypes.
A potential sales Manager should be able to speak correctly, that is, clearly Express their thoughts. But what to say — it should be explained to the company. Yes, it takes time and effort.But it is necessary to consider this as an investment in personnel. Of course, it is possible that a person will learn everything, and then soon leave. Well, you just have to be prepared for that, that’s all. If the Manager wants to leave, he will leave. In this case, it is easier to find a new Manager. But if all the smart managers leave you, it means that the company is doing something wrong.
Most managers do not think about looking for managers until a vacancy is available — until a person leaves, becomes ill for a long time, in General, until they need to look for a replacement in emergency mode. This is wrong. All manuals and textbooks on sales management recommend constantly looking at candidates. Out of 100 candidates who responded, only 20 will be invited to an interview, only 5 of them will pass the interview at best, and only 1 to 2 of them will become truly successful managers. How many responses do you get each month? Can you calculate the probability of getting a good Manager in the next six months?
However, the constant search is only the beginning. The most important thing is to implement it correctly. The portrait of the ideal candidate for the position of sales Manager looks like this: higher education, work experience from 1 year, preferably 23-27 years old, knowledge of the market, the presence of its own customer base. These are typical requirements for a candidate. At the same time, they already have disadvantages. Let’s take them in order.
Higher education. In other words, anyone who is still studying and wants to work, or who has graduated from a technical school and has not yet entered the Institute, is immediately dismissed. But what is this advantage? In this case, only in the presence of “crust”. The level of intelligence in our case is not related to the presence or absence of higher education. Rather, it is the presence or absence of opportunities. And more often, it is the lack of these opportunities that makes people show miracles of ingenuity. At the same time, among those whom you eliminated without even looking, there might be a Manager who would bring you a lot of new clients and make profitable deals.
Work experience. It is good to hire an experienced person and not bother with their training. However, training is usually still necessary to some extent: as a rule, each company has its own specifics. But people without experience and with experience will perceive learning differently: the former will be more attuned to the perception. An experienced Manager can simply refuse training, trainings, etc. This does not mean that experience is bad, of course not. But you need to judge not so much by experience as by potential. And don’t put another dam in the way of a stream of your applicants.
Market knowledge. The dream of an employer, but at the same time not devoid of pitfalls. After all, it is necessary to remember that knowledge of the market carries with it all the negative that your applicant had to face in this market. This usually manifests itself as follows: “I know them, they will never sign a contract, it is impossible because…”. And no beliefs, no arguments will work — a negative experience. It is very difficult to fight it. Market knowledge usually refers to knowledge of key market players, their offers, and possibly personal acquaintance with one of the competitors. It doesn’t really matter. Much more important is the ability to quickly navigate the situation, understand the competitive environment and at the same time be able to make decisions that will determine the success of the company.
Age. At a sales management workshop for commercial Directors, we saw the following scene. The presenter addressed the audience with the question of how she sees the perfect sales Manager. There were many options, but all of them had the phrase “young, energetic”. The host immediately asked the question: “What is the age of your best seller?» Most recognized that the best managers are far from young. Is it always worth copying the policy of large companies that have the desire and means to educate young people?
The General idea is not to approach the selection formally, not to expose artificial barriers. Experience, age, or education are not important. Potential is important, and if you see it, then the person is right for you.
The rules of selection and management
Another point that is also important. It is bad when the head of any level is assigned to choose only his immediate supervisor. If the company is large, then the interview should be conducted by a Manager who stands at least one step down. In small companies, it is advisable to interview the CEO. Otherwise, strong candidates will be eliminated with almost a hundred percent result.
Cases when strong competitors are “slaughtered” during interviews happen all the time. You can’t build a strong team like that. You need to understand that in any case, the whole business is based on competition. Including within the company. As soon as you remove this element of the competitive environment, the company begins to lose to competitors.
It is not uncommon to hear the following phrase from a Manager: “the Manager must think about how to earn more, how to make more profit for the company! After all, he is interested in this.” I think the problem here is awareness of priorities. A top Manager should think about profit. The sales Manager still thinks more about his salary. Like any employee, he doesn’t care much about the company as a whole, unless it affects him personally.
If the Manager has the opportunity to do nothing today and get their money, they will do so. That is why when the Manager comes to work, the first time the intensity of work is off the scale. Then gradually the client base grows, the salary increases, and there comes a time when to get an extra $ 100 for a salary of 1000, you need to make an effort comparable to the effort to maintain the entire client base. The Manager’s internal motivation stops, and it is necessary to push him forward. How to push — each Manager decides for himself. For example, that a clear statement of the task allows you to control its execution. Divide the task into several stages, and set deadlines for completing each of them.
As for development, we also need to remember a few points. Those companies that hire the head of the Department on the condition that he himself will look for customers and engage in sales, are somewhat deceitful. If you need a senior Manager, it’s still better to promote one of your own. If you take a person from the outside, it is unlikely that you will be able to combine control, help others, and personal sales. The new Manager will be working on the development of their database. Full-fledged management and personal sales are not compatible. Here we are talking about the direct sales process, and not about help and advice.