Sales Management is an organizational field that is focused primarily on the strategic management of the day-to-day operations of a company’s sales activities and the allocation of sales efforts. As such, it is a key business function since most large commercial organization and most network sales via the sale of goods and services to customers. Sales Management involves the allocation of sales effort in different types of sales, with a view to maximizing profits. Sales Management also includes the generation of quality control reports, sales proposals, and pricing structures to ensure that all elements of the sales process are managed in a smoothly efficient manner. Furthermore, Sales Management seeks to close the loop of selling by building and sustaining long-term relationships with customers.
In order for an organization to establish effective sales management, a primary role is required by a manager who can effectively lead and motivate the team. The manager’s responsibilities include planning the activities of the team, developing and implementing sales proposals and strategies, and maintaining communication between the sales and marketing departments. The Manager’s role is essentially one that encompasses overall planning. However, the actual work involved in the actual sales activities is dealt with by specialized managers who are responsible for the execution of the manager’s plans. The primary means of implementing an effective sales management program is the development of the appropriate Sales Management Plan (SMP).
Developing an effective sales management plan involves defining specific sales objectives, identifying the resources that are needed to achieve these objectives, and establishing the relationship between these resources and the activities of the sales force. Sales managers are required to develop and implement plans by obtaining input from the staff, the sales staff, the marketing department, and other key players involved in the organization. Once a solid sales plan has been developed and implemented, the manager then needs to evaluate the effectiveness of the plan on a regular basis, taking into consideration any changes that have occurred over the course of time that may affect the effectiveness of the plan.
One of the most important aspects of sales management is personal selling. It is common for many sales managers to focus on the impersonal aspects of selling. For example, the manager may emphasize the company’s ability to provide excellent products or services to its customers, and not the potential of each individual customer. Many sales managers find it very difficult to bring themselves to personally talk with prospective clients or buyers. This reluctance to communicate with individuals can significantly impact the success rate of the entire sales management process, as well as the bottom line.
By contrast, personal selling is extremely important to the success of a small business sales force. Successful sales managers develop personal selling skills in order to sell their ideas and their product/service to individuals. This personal selling allows a sales manager to develop close and lasting relationships with prospective clients. These relationships can often mean the difference between a sale and no sale, or the possibility of generating enough sales to make a profit.
Another important aspect of sales management is territory management. Many managers mistakenly believe that they have complete control over all territories within their company. However, there are inherent limits to this control, especially when there are competing demands from different teams within the company. Under these circumstances, managers must establish boundaries within their territory to ensure that all team members respect these boundaries. Managers may establish specific goals for territories based on the size of the territory, the number of sales per day within the territory, and other factors.