Sales Leadership Can Make or Break Your Business

Posted on September 20, 2023
Sales Leadership Can Make or Break Your Business

The New Normal for the Sales and Marketing Workforce

As we enter the “new normal” in 2023, the world of work is adapting. Globally, companies have pivoted to find an exciting new path forward. That has led to a large-scale shift to remote work, increased use of digital collaboration tools, and updated office and workplace layouts, among many other changes. If you have a strong and specialized skill set, there’s a job for you to showcase your strengths.  

Randstad Canada published a report suggesting that sales professionals, especially those in leadership roles, are needed across all sectors. In today’s increasingly competitive market, what sales teams have come to understand is the value that major accounts bring to the table. What was once a significant local account may now be a key global customer.   

A few major accounts can easily represent 70 to 80 percent of a company’s revenue. Such accounts can be hard to retain and even harder to replace. The retention and growth of major accounts make a critical difference in the success of a business.  

Challenges and Obstacles

There are some common challenges and obstacles key account managers deal with regularly:  

1. Ineffective at ‘Managing Up’
Even though key account managers serve as crucial sales representatives and team leaders, they don’t always have the support of senior management they deserve. They are often not given the resources and time needed to maintain these important accounts.   

2. Too Many Accounts
If key customers really mean so much to a business, then having one account manager taking care of up to 10 accounts or more is counterproductive. One manager cannot possibly develop the essential relationships, develop sufficient knowledge of the client’s needs, integrate supplier resources and do it all ten times over.  

3. Lack of Strategic Partnership
To successfully manage Enterprise Accounts, sales leaders must become strategic partners, not just representatives. If an account manager finds they are struggling to keep an important account, they should strive to become a trusted adviser who finds ways for their client’s business to succeed.   

4. Sales Profile Awareness to Leverage Your Talent
Many leadership assessments are out there to help you better understand your skillset and strengths. Sales leaders need to understand how to communicate with their teams and manage their customers based on expectations in a constantly changing sales environment. Completing such an assessment and learning what new skills you need to acquire will give you the confidence to maximize your talents.  

Schulich ExecEd’s Certificate in Sales Management

Reading this article and familiarizing yourself with these tips and challenges is one step forward in developing into a sales leader, ready to take on every shifting working environment. The next step would be gaining more knowledge on how to tackle these obstacles, and there is no better way than enrolling in Schulich ExecEd’s Certificate in Sales Management program. 

Over five days of study, this program in sales management will show you how to lead a sales team that achieves exceptional revenue and profit growth. You’ll learn the ways of situational leadership and performance coaching and develop a focused sales management process that builds high-performing teams for any situation. This unique program was designed by Program Director Sanjay J. Dhebar and a team of world-class sales professionals, drawing on their 15 years working in commercial leadership roles across various industries, including health care and consumer packaged goods.  

Visit the Certificate in Sales Management program page to learn more or enrol today. If this isn’t the program for you, speak with one of our expert advisors and find the right program for where you are in your career.  

Written By

Sanjay J. Dhebar

Sanjay is a highly rated faculty member with the Schulich ExecEd, Schulich School of Busines at York University. He coaches and develops senior leaders in organizations including Four Seasons Hotel, Siemens, Hoffman La Roche, TD Bank, NN Group, Mercedes Benz, Samsung, Teva, and Sick Kids Hospital. He uses the ‘case study’ methodology in his teachings drawing on best practice approaches across sectors. Sanjay has developed a respected process and practical approach called “The Business Workout”, which enables business leaders achieve better performance and success.

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