Not all Sales Managers get to create a sales team from scratch like the Start-up Sales Manager. Instead, some must work with sales teams affected by incompetent leaders. The previous sales manager failed to lead and establish effective processes – outdated or non-existent. The job of the Reconstruction Sales Manager is to reconstruct the sales team to make it function properly. They must hire better reps, remove poor performers, ad or update processes and create efficiencies.
The Reconstruction Sales Manager has the task of taking a dysfunctional sales team and meeting its sales objectives. Often the salespeople received spotty coaching from previous leaders. As a result, they didn’t have sufficient training, sales aids, or accountability.
2 Conditions for the Reconstruction Sales Manager
Two main conditions call for the role of the Reconstruction Sales Manager. The first is a non-sales manager led the sales team. For example, the CEO of a small company couldn’t afford a sales manager. They managed the sales team themselves… poorly. They had to act in that role. Unfortunately, they had no choice. As a result, the spotty methods and management style prevented the sales team from achieving their quotas. When companies like this finally bring a Sales Manager on staff, lead flow processes, reporting structures, and training systems need to be delicately overhauled.
Another reason a company may need a Reconstruction Sales Manager is because the previous sales manager was bad. They simply didn’t do their job well. Perhaps executives promoted a former superstar sales rep. Other times, it was an operations manager who moved over to sales. Regardless of the reason, they didn’t know how to coach, manage and lead a sales team. The pipelines are too small, the training was not targeted to the reps, and the resources were outdated. In addition, the process are overly complicated or too simple.
7 Key Issues to Address
The Reconstruction Sales Manager always begins with a period of reconstruction. During this period, the manager must address several key issues:
- The caliber of each salesperson – This refers to the selling skills, product knowledge, and personal skill alignment with the sales role.
- Dealing with poor performers – Do they need coaching, sales training, cross-training or replacing?
- Hiring new salespeople – What is the process for attracting and evaluating top performers?
- Establishing benchmark success standard for sales roles – What does it mean to be successful in each sales role? This needs clarifying.
- Pinpointing key accounts that need maintaining for cash flow – Which accounts? Which sales reps can retain them?
- Identifying poor accounts in order to refocus the sales team’s attention on better opportunities – This is where an Ideal Customer Profile comes in handy.
- Repairing or creating systems – What is the forecasting model? How effective are the training systems, onboarding processes, compensation plans, etc?
With this and more on their plate, Sales Manager can fail. One way to ensure success as a Reconstruction Sales Manager is to start by establishing clearly defined and realistic set of expectations from the start. This ensures that you and management are on the same page and increases the likelihood of success. And what does that success look like?
Ultimately, a Reconstruction Sales Manager is successful once they are no longer one. Once pre-existing problems have been addressed in the time frame specified, the Sales Manager should be able to transition into a Pure Growth Sales Manager.