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Do you Stand Out as an Exceptional Sales Manager

The real challenge for the exceptional sales manager is to accept at the very beginning of the relationship the commitment being made to the individual being hired. One of the most important aspects of being successful as a sales manager is to recruit the right people. Failure to attract and recruit the right candidate will always produce less than desirable results or, at best, under achievement by the organization. Without the best "people

on the bus" the results sought by management will not be there and the cost of continuous turnover will continuously plague the company. One thing I have learned over the years working in financial services is that the brokerage industry does not like to see continuous change at the sponsor level. It's always been my personal belief that you must work hard to identify and recruit the right people.

In his book Winning by Jack Welch, former Chairman and CEO of GE, he states he hires using a formula he refers to as the "4-E (and 1-P) framework." The first "E" is positive energy... it is the ability to go go go.... The second "E" is the ability to energize others... it is the ability to get others excited about your products and ideas. (Personally, I feel this is one of the most important in evaluating quality sales professionals) The third "E" is the edge... the courage to make tough yes-or-no decisions. And the fourth "E" is execute, very simply the ability to get the job done. As Jack stated, if the candidate has the four "Es" then you look for the final P - passion. By passion, he refers to the heartfelt, deep, and authentic excitement about work and being the best. It's my belief that passion and the four "Es" will serve the manager well in selecting quality people.

The one area most sales managers fail is what I consider to be the most important. It is the

ability to mentor and train once hired. I have seen so many managers hire the candidate and then leave them to their own without ever spending quality time developing and training them. All to often quality people are neglected and left on their own to "figure it out." This is a BIG mistake.

Recruiting the personnel is only step one. Once the hiring and selection process has been completed, the manager's next real job is to put in place and then execute a development plan for each individual he or she hires regardless of the newly hired employees background or experience. As a sales manager, I have spent countless hours on the round working alongside the folks I hire. This is the most important aspect of developing quality people and insuring they are telling the story properly and/or communicating the opportunity to invest with your company in a manner consistent with the desired outcome. Train them, mentor them, and most importantly show them you care about their future. If anything, you'll gain their trust and respect. Regardless of the level of experience, the effective sales manager is ALWAYS checking in and developing others.

Lastly, the exceptional sales manager is working to develop and retain those they hire. It's one thing to successfully hire and develop the best people. If done well, it will bring with it solid results and also the real challenge of retaining the people you've invested in. The retention of good people does not happen by accident. At the onset, outline a path of progression for the individual and promote them based on their abilities. Offer raises, promotions and leadership roles so they develop as professionals and feel valued within the organization. If you ignore good people once they have been successful they will always be receptive to being recruited by others who will give them the attention they deserve and need which they may not be getting from their current manager.

Follow these steps and you're on your way to becoming an effective leader of others.

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