During my very first sales management role, I decided that everything leaving the desks and computers of my team would be a direct reflection – with regards to customers and competitors – of the way I ran my ship.
There was a phrase that I’d heard a top Chef say, which had really stuck with me;
“You should never let your mistakes leave the kitchen!”
You see, having worked hard to achieve a half decent reputation in previous roles, I was aware that certain buyers were only booking initial appointments with my new account management team because they had been treated professionally and effectively by me in the past.
Therefore, I spent a great deal of time ensuring that I retained that perception by keeping a careful watch over everything that left the office.
However, I didn’t realise what I was letting myself in for.
They were creating letters that resembled thank you notes from a ten year-old, proposals that I can only assume were put together on their way in to work and presentations that had the professionalism of a junior school PowerPoint project.
So I worked late.
I polished that rubbish until it looked good enough for human consumption – everything that left that sales office looked so good it could have been written by me.
And do you know why?
Because on most occasions, it had been written by me!
And I remember perfectly the fateful evening when all this came to a climatic end.
I was in my office – an hour and a half hard drive from home – it was eight o’clock at night. I was polishing up a proposal for a fairly senior, but lazy regional manager, and I decided to give him a call to discuss the project we were both working on.
I had missed my children’s bedtime, I hadn’t eaten since my hurried sandwich hours earlier, the cleaners were the only other people in the building and the Account Manager – who I thought would follow me to the ends of the earth because of the dedication and loyalty that I was currently showing him and the cause – said;
“Can you give me a call tomorrow morning about ten? I’m just in the pub doing some personal stuff!”
When we talk about ACCOUNTABILITY in regards to the Sales Management FAME Effect, we ask the question – WHO – as in “Whose job is it?”
I mentioned in a previous article this little nugget of advice;
As a sales manager it is not your job to hit the sales target – it’s your job to ensure the target gets hit!
Subtle difference in words – massive difference in results.
So, if you’re an over worked, underappreciated sales manager; here’s a question I’d like you to ponder over for a little while.
It’ll help you to recognise whether you’re focusing your efforts in the right direction and being as effective as you possibly could be – or whether you’re just acting like some kind of sales martyr, working yourself to death without anyone ever actually noticing.
Ask yourself this;
Who is better off – The Manager who earns £1,150 (£60K pa) for a 60 hour working week or the team members who earn £770 (£40K pa) and work a 35 hour week?
Sure the manager gets the big bucks in every pay packet, but by the hour they’re actually earning 15% less – go on work it out – it’s 15% less.
Are they earning more money? Well…. sort of.
But – if you went for a job interview and were told that – as the manager you’d be earning £19 per hour – and your sales team would be earning £22 per hour – you’d think they were mad – wouldn’t you?
But that’s exactly the trap that most managers fall into.
And yet without getting FOCUS and ACCOUNTABILITY right – the first two sections of the FAME Effect – that’s probably exactly what you’ll end up doing too.
Interested in finding out more?
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Our Sales Management Open Workshops show you how to piece together the four main elements of successfully managing a team – Focus; Accountability; Motivation; Education – and show you how to get the best out of everyone involved.
At the end of this workshop delegates will be able to:
- Work out how to focus on the real tasks that need to be achieved – and find a way to ensure every member of their team is doing that too.
- Create a culture where every member of the team understands that they are accountable and responsible for their own success – and recognise exactly what that makes them accountable for.
- Genuinely motivate people to over deliver -and even more importantly – learn how to make sure you don’t demotivate them.
- Coach the entire team to greater things – learn how to give them a net of their own rather than continuously feeding them individual fish.
- Feel competent and confident enough to conduct staff discipline in a professional (and legal) manner.
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