10 Mistakes Sales Managers Make

grayscale photo of person using MacBook

More people become sales managers over the course of their career than any other job in the organization outside of the forth one is a good sales manager. This leader guides and directs the sales team. Though their primary responsibilities are on customer face to face what I call “human resource management” is often at the back burner. I say this because sales managers spend a fair amount of their days doing more with less.

With a variety of sales systems and lots of sales consultants available, missing a day of customer sales calls can lead to significant expenditures. Managers in the field can be forgiven for tempted to downplay the significance of customer visits when receiving third party feedback. Here are my top 10 “mistakes” a sales manager makes

1. Meeting the customer in a professional way.

Reading an evaluation in an office far from your customer’s office or home office is a waste of precious time. We all read evaluations from our co-workers in our offices and you are likely to read a poorly worded evaluation. The last thing you want is them reading it on a report from someone higher in the organization. Incidents like these are costly for both the company and the salesperson. The cost to you includes lost time and the possibility of becoming more aggressive with your customer while their concerns are considered.

2. Meeting the customer listening to their comment.

I have always heard a sales manager make the comment: “I don’t listen to what your customers are saying.” Truth is, people are always saying what they plan to say regardless of how they occur to you. I have seen sales managers tell a customer: “We may not be aware of the cold call drain.” Having purchased an airline last year, I truly think I have been around for a while and I know many airlines have to waste their money doing the same thing. The worst part is many clients know that the above statement is just a quick exercise. Customer care is not a mean is to lose any trust you have broken.

3.iso-selling submission odds.

Businesses that make the most profits are absentee owners, because nearly 75% of all salespeople are not actively looking for new prospects. We all make a lot of excuses for not finding prospects but we should see the consequences and understand that a discomforting hit on commissions and a poor reputation can be dis remedy.

4. Guess-selling submissions.

Faced with a prospect’s demand, you might make a great guess. While many companies trust their salespeople to ask the right questions, guess sellers are not trusted. When the client is busy, it often goes unnoticed. When you write a powerful tip about a particular prospects challenges in detail and watch them think your tip is a great idea for their business, you have opened a conversation and raised their trust. Guess sellers are the worst at their profession because they are busy selling their less than ideal clients and it requires a great deal of work to reactivate them.

5. Not seeing the whole picture.

Marketing is so much more than just following a shopping cart. The intention of each step on the marketing journey is a critical process for a leader in any business. Without complete commitment to the details of each step the lenses of any links between all steps are skewed. I believe that too many leaders look at the short-term results at hand alone and not holistic about the journey. This would explain the wastages in companies like IBM who do not engage in strategic thinking or analysis.


Not asking a source for information.

I recently astutely stunned an fellow team member when he gave me a real life example of someone not asking a customer what I was doing for his business. You have probably seen the situation where salespeople put out their hand for quotes and they wait for the customer to respond. The problem with these scenarios is that there is not a question that has been asked in the first place. The answer is all about the salesperson.

man in brown jacket sitting beside with woman at coffee shop