A vice president of business development, sometimes referred to as vice president of sales, is a professional who directs and oversees a sales force for an organization. Reporting directly to a top executive such as a president or chief executive officer, these professionals ensure an organization grows profitability by developing new strategies to attract new customers.
Sales executives typically have a bachelor's degree in business administration, marketing or a specialized discipline depending on the type of products or services the employer provides. Many pursue a master's degree in business administration. In most cases, these professionals are progressively promoted to vice president of business development after a number of years of continued success in sales.
Directing and overseeing the sales force of an organization includes hiring, training and motivating sales staff. This can include developing strategic plans for the sales team to effectively sell the products or services such as product and sales training, as well as rewards and recognition programs. The vice president of business development also oversees the group's financial budget to ensure business development goals are met and exceeded.
Almost all top business development executives are involved with direct sales along with the sales team they oversee. This involves meeting with customers to sell new products or services, assisting the sales team with customer meetings and seeking out new business through prospecting and marketing.
Organizational goals and policies are established by the vice president of business development in collaboration with other vice presidents and top executives. These professionals meet frequently to ensure that the overall operation of the organization is conducted in accordance with these goals and policies, as well as to review the organization's financial information to ensure successful operations.
Salary for this occupation can vary depending on the size of the employer and salary structure. Most top executives receive a large bonus or commission based on the organization's profit each year. In April 2010, Indeed lists a national average base salary of $92,000 per year.
2016 Salary Information for Top Executives
Top executives earned a median annual salary of $109,140 in 2016, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. On the low end, top executives earned a 25th percentile salary of $70,800, meaning 75 percent earned more than this amount. The 75th percentile salary is $165,620, meaning 25 percent earn more. In 2016, 2,572,000 people were employed in the U.S. as top executives.