A sales development manager is someone who directs a company’s sales department. Sales development managers are responsible for interviewing, hiring and training employees, as well as organizing and scheduling them. They also help team members reach out to existing clients and set up new accounts. Sales development managers are needed in practically every industry, including retail, automotive and wholesale.
Sales development managers need to understand their company’s policies and overall mission, and what type of income needs to be generated to not only reach, but surpass, goals. They create sales pitches for their team, sometimes ones that need to be memorized down to the last word. They also often need to demonstrate how the products and services operate to their team, as well as potential clients.
Since sales development managers often do plenty of selling themselves, they need to be experts in customer service. They must also possess excellent communication skills, informing team members what needs to be accomplished and how to go about it. On top of that, sales development managers need to be strong leaders, ably motivating the sales force. They should also be professional, confident, energetic and highly motivated and organized. Most sales development managers also need basic computer and math skills, since a great deal of their job revolves around numbers.
Most sales development managers need to have displayed a great deal of success as a member of a sales team. Also, most companies today prefer candidates, whether entry-level or supervisors, have obtained a bachelor’s degree. Aspiring sales development managers typically focus on courses in marketing, business, management, mathematics and communications. That said, a bachelor’s degree isn’t always a requirement. Much of it depends on the industry. For instance, a sales development manager in electronics may merely have worked his way up through the ranks with a satisfactory sales record and strong appreciation of customer service.
Every company needs to generate income through sales, and someone to teach its employees how to go about doing so. In other words, there will always be a need for sales development managers. As for the next decade, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that jobs for sales managers will increase by 15 percent through 2018. That is faster than the national average for all professions.
With the right amount of experience and ability, sales development managers are likely to be among the country’s highest earners. According to the BLS, sales managers earned a median annual salary of $97,260. That is likely to fluctuate based on the sales department’s success, as many sales managers and their teams work on commission, receiving a portion of the income generated through sales.
2016 Salary Information for Sales Managers
Sales managers earned a median annual salary of $117,960 in 2016, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. On the low end, sales managers earned a 25th percentile salary of $79,420, meaning 75 percent earned more than this amount. The 75th percentile salary is $168,300, meaning 25 percent earn more. In 2016, 385,500 people were employed in the U.S. as sales managers.