The Sales Manager job profileSo, what exactly does a Sales Manager in a sports company do? Like we said, direct selling is, in most times, not a part of this position anymore. However, knowledge or former experience as a Vendor is a big plus. Why? Because a Sales Manager coordinates, guides and leads the Sales team of a company. Together with the HR department, they hire and train new team members, giving them the necessary base to succeed in their jobs. Furthermore, the Sales Manager defines the different Sales territories for each team member, defines the sales goals in smaller companies and supervises their team to make sure that the quota is reached.Further typical tasks and projects of a Sales Manager include:
- Building a Sales Plan
- Taking care of customer's relations
- Management of external distributors
- Expanding the Sales Territories and developing new channels
Which qualities and skills do you need as a Sales Manager?In general, it's great if you bring former experiences as a salesman. It's often successful and experienced salespeople that get promoted to Sales Managers during their career in one company. Understanding how distribution works and which instruments to use to push Sales will be a great base to direct your team.For external applicants though, the sales experience is not always necessary. Sports companies especially look for management experience, since leadership skills are absolutely necessary in this position.
A Sales Manager is an achiever. He is performance driven and has strong analytical skills which helps him and his team define tactics and strategies to develop sales within or beyond market potential. Natural leader, he is capable of creating favourable environment, processes and organization for his sales teams to perform at their best.Instead of going forward and working alone, like talented salesmen often tend to do, you need to be a teamplayer. As a guide and mentor for your Sales team, you need to take care of each member, listen and support them in reaching their tasks. Furthermore, a Sales Manager needs to motivate its team on a daily base.Good communication skills are also essential for this role. You need to be able to explain the tasks, sales plan, budget and distribution channels to your team, so that they understand what exactly they need to fulfill. In combination with patience and enthusiasm, they will be the perfect foundation for training your team. They also come in handy in case of upcoming problems with customers or between team members.Your analytical skills are crucial for the managing part of the role. You should be able to set up a realistic budget and goals, reading quota and being able to foresee the development of your sales on a monthly, quarterly or yearly base. Also, if you are able to keep calm and think through different steps, this will help you make success-driven decisions - which will come up often in a leadership position.As you see, the role definitely requires former experience, so the job is not suited for a career enterer who just finished his studies or apprenticeship. Whether it's other management positions or Sales, to be considered for the position, you should have been working in a suitable field for at least 3-5 years.
Stephane Janssoone, Managing Partner of Sportyjob