You're a sales manager now, responsible for the productivity and careers of others.
How does it feel?
Probably a little strange if you've been kicked upstairs after being a top seller, yourself.
But you'll get used to it. In fact, you'll get so used to it that you may not do any selling yourself, after a while.
Your job will be selling your salespeople on selling more.
And you'll have mixed emotions about that, being tied down to a desk, filing reports, doing administrative work.
But an insidious process will also be underway that you'll be unaware of.
The longer you're out of the day-to-day selling game the more you'll come to doubt your ability to open and to close deals. And your once legendary performance as a seller might be wiped out of the corporate memory, and even your own.
Along come your new salespeople, and they do fairly well, and some are exceptionally effective.
They'll look at you with derision, and possibly contempt, while lionizing their own efforts as being the heavy lifting of the company.
You, the benchwarmer, will seem wimpy. "I'll bet he wasn't so hot," they'll think and possibly whisper to each other.
I've faced this situation as a sales manager and as a consultant. You run headlong into the credibility buster: "Winners DO, while the losers TEACH."
I like to counter that perception, directly, by strutting my stuff, on occasion.
I've been known to get on the phones and to make cold calls right next to my salespeople and trainees.
They hear me practicing exactly what I preach, and I get a chance to encounter exactly the forces they've been telling me they're facing.
Invariably, we gain respect for each other, but we also make more sales, because literally, everybody is PITCHING-IN.
When I get a sale, I hand it to someone who is struggling, to prime the pump.
And often, they match it quickly with one of their own.
Aristotle, I believe, said when you're instructing others, "Example is more efficacious than precept."
And that means people will get you and respect you when you put theory aside and actually show them you can roll up your sleeves and do the job, yourself!
Best-selling author of 12 books and more than 800 articles, Dr. Gary S. Goodman is considered a foremost expert in telephone effectiveness, customer service, and sales development. A top-rated speaker, seminar leader, and consultant, his clients extend across the organizational spectrum, from the Fortune 1000 to small businesses. He can be reached at: firstname.lastname@example.org