Picture the scene, you’ve worked in sales for years, crushing deals and making record levels of profit for your company. After all your hard work your boss finally recognises your achievements and rewards you with a promotion to the position of vice-president of sales. Congratulations, you’ve made it, but what comes next?
There’s an unfortunate phenomena in the sales industry of the newly promoted vice president floundering in their new role. Whether it be because they don’t know how to exercise their authority, or stamp their own brand on the company, they fail in their new position and end up moving on or getting fired. How to become vice president of sales is easy to discuss, how to be the best vice president of sales you can be is a little more tricky.
What is the position of vice president of sales? It’s one of tremendous pressure as you have a whole team to manage without having the full discretion to act as the president does. It’s a difficult job but there are several techniques you can implement to ensure that you become the perfect vice-president.
Make sure you surround yourself with the best quality people
When you start as the vice president of sales, cast your eye over your team and see who’s performing, and who isn’t. Don’t be afraid of cutting away the dead weight, as a vice-president of sales you need to be tough and determined. Make sure you retain the services of the team’s top performers and also consider hiring new talent to boost your team.
As a leader it can be tempting to surround yourself with people who just agree with you but you need to actively avoid this. You should be strong and secure in your abilities, don’t hire people who aren’t as good as you just to make yourself look better to your boss. Nothing will damage your team and bottom line more than hiring poor talent.
Instead, make sure you’re actively looking for talent that may even be better than you. You’ll be able to mold and cultivate these new team members while also significantly boosting revenue via their abilities. You should always be surrounding yourself with the best quality people, both professionally and personally.
Understand the difference between tactics and strategy, and think strategically
A common mistake for newly appointed vice presidents is to focus on tactics over strategy. You might even be asking yourself right now if these two concepts aren’t the same anyway. Both tactics and strategy have their origins in military history and this isn’t a bad concept to keep in your mind, indeed, you should be running your team with military efficiency.
Tactics refers to the day to day decisions you make to implement your strategy. Your strategy deals with your long term goals and targets, things likely yearly revenue and growth plans. As people who learn how to become the best vice president of sales usually have more experience with tactics they often tend to forget strategy.
You won’t be able to manage your deal pipeline, your team or sales if you can’t plan your business over the long-term. Therefore as a vice-president of sales you need to focus on building a sustainable and quality strategy. Make sure you give yourself time to read books and literature on strategy, and regularly include strategy planning in your workflows.
Emphasize the importance of empathy
The old maximum that people buy things based on emotional impulse rather than logical calculation is true and should be considered when you ask yourself ‘what is a vice-president of sales?’ You need to consider the emotional condition of your team and consider how best to nurture their well being. This isn’t just out of a sense of altruistic compassion, a mentally healthy workforce is a productive one too.
You can improve the mental and emotional well being of your time using a variety of techniques. Encouraging a culture of openness and support, where triumphs are rewarded and failures looked on as an opportunity to learn, is a good start. Also consider investing in your team’s further education and training, impart them with skills they can use to improve their life.
If the coronavirus crisis has taught us anything it is that mental health is of the utmost importance. Do not make the mistake of thinking that employee well being is the sole preserve of the HR department, when it comes to motivating your team the buck stops with you. Invest in your team’s emotional well being, this is how to be the best vice-president of sales.
Stay in your lane – Remember, you’re the vice-president of sales
People who work in management often feel that they have to balance a lot of balls to succeed when their job kicks off. Certainly, this is a true maxim, but if you’re asking yourself ‘how to be the best vice-president in sales’ the answer is relatively simple. What is a vice-president of sales? Someone who works in sales and nothing more, so focus on sales and nothing else.
Other department heads and people further up the food chain will often attempt to unload work they don’t want on you. This is especially true if you’re a new vice-president of sales, and you might be tempted to be overly agreeable to your colleagues in order to build up a positive reputation. Don’t do this, instead of giving off a positive impression you will only end up looking like a pushover to your colleagues and you’ll end up getting exploited.
Be strong and focus on the best interests of your own team, make sure they’re focused on sales and nothing else. This is what they will be graded on after all, your boss isn’t going to be happy if you failed to meet your sales target but found the time to help your colleagues from other departments. Focusing on the fundamentals is how you become the best vice-president of sales you have the potential to be.
Are you ready to become the best vice-president of sales you can be?
If you’re ready to embark on the latest stage in your professional adventure as a salesperson, remember, even the greatest amongst us require help and support. You need the support of your colleagues, your friends and family, and the support of experts who’ve worked in the sales industry for decades. That’s why if you’re starting out as a vice-president of sales you need the support of Revenue Grid.
Revenue Grid offers three high-tech tools that will make your work as vice-president of sales much easier, starting with Revenue Engage, a dedicated engagement tool that will help your reps maximise their interaction with their customers. Revenue Inbox is the company’s top of the line CRM and email integration tool, guaranteed to ensure you don’t miss out on crucial communications or data. Finally, Revenue Guide aids your sales team in making intelligent, data-driven decisions, and empowers them to take the initiative to achieve maximum results.
Revenue Grid’s team is staffed by professionals from a wide array of backgrounds all focused on one thing; maximising your sales. The company’s tools can be implemented anytime, by any company, working in any industry. Make sure you visit the Revenue Grid website to learn more and check out the company’s blog on the latest sales news, concepts, ideas and topics.