Why You’d be Stupid Not to Invest in Your Sales Managers – Part 1

First things first
If you’re like most sales leaders today, you’ve done all you can do with the typical performance improvement strategies such as sales rep training, formal sales processes, and cloud-based CRM. And if you’re like most sales leaders, those investments are yielding slimmer and slimmer benefit.

But, what have you done for your sales managers? If you’re like most leaders, not nearly enough. We recently completed a large-scale study of 518 sales managers from Fortune 500 sales forces, and we found a startling disparity in performance among sales managers. If you’re looking for your next great investment to boost sales performance, this just might be it.

Why Sales Managers Are Key
Our research revealed a 39% difference in revenue performance between the top and bottom quartile of sales managers. That equated to an average of $3.5 million more revenue brought in by top sales managers than their lower-performing peers. Start multiplying $3.5 million by the number of managers in your sales force, and the impact of superior sales management becomes tantalizingly significant.

Let’s Run the Numbers
Consider a hypothetical company with 100 frontline sales managers. At a cost of $3,000 per manager, the total cost for training that team would amount to $300,000. Because you’ve chosen your training programs well, your investment would elevate the performance of your 25 lowest-performers by the $3.5 million revenue revealed in our study. That would boost revenue by $87.5 million – a staggering 29,067% return on your initial $300k training investment. Run your own numbers using the table below.

Cost of a bad sales manager

A Gazillion % ROI!

I challenge you to find another way to achieve such a startling ROI.  Continuing to tinker with CRM, sales methodology, rep training…forget it.  It just won’t to give you the same kick. Investments in sales managers have a unique multiplier effect that cascades to all sellers they manage… a domino effect that allows you to train 1/10th of your sales force yet elevate the performance of all. It just makes sense.

The Bottom Line Is…

No other investment in your sales force is going to give you this kind of return. Investing in your sales managers is the best money you will spend in 2018. To quote my high school calculus teacher, Mr. Jergens… You can always trust the math.

Our next blog will show you exactly what skills your sales managers need to get you this remarkable return.