Six states of sales managers
13.11.2010 10946

Six states of sales managers

Management is coercive. Simply because any system strives for rest, and control is to bring the body out of the state in which it is comfortable. From here there is an endless number of conflicts between managers and subordinates. The leader, appearing in the field of view of the subordinate, sees "patient obedience to fate." However, he does not want to be a “messenger of grief,” and he begins to abandon management decisions. The nature of conflicts between bosses and sales managers and the ways to resolve them were studied by business coach Alexander Fridman.

Why does the system strive for peace? No physics. Solid biology.

In nature, the state of rest is fixed at the level "just above death", or, in other words, in a state of saving resources. As soon as he ate someone - immediately into the bushes: gain strength for a new hunt. As soon as he ran away from someone - again into the bushes: save strength for a new dash. If you run a lot, you will be eaten faster. This is a biological law, and two hundred years of capitalism have changed nothing here.

On the other hand, there is biological rationality: while a fat one dries, a thin one dies. And there is behavioral rationality: do not twitch until you are touched. In other words, if it is possible not to do something, a person will not do this. This is biology, and fighting it is useless. You need to know and use it.

As a rule, it comes down to two options. The first: "And let us persuade a person, explain, inspire - and we will be happy." In this case, motivation is based on the development of specialist capabilities. This is a humanistic school of management, in the center of which is a person. The second option: "the better all processes in the company are organized, the more efficient it is." This is a systems management school with technology at its center.

However, both systems begin to slow down if the bosses do not want and do not know how to manage. Of course, one cannot say that they do not want to rule at all. But they want this in principle, someday, and not right now and not to the extent that they do it regularly (bosses are people too, and the desire to save energy is not alien to them). So, according to my information, regular management in Russia is built in 5% of companies. In the rest he is spontaneous. And in order to curb the elements, you must first know what condition your employees may be in. There are six of them:

1. Confrontation. Typical questions of such an employee: why should I do this? why is it necessary at all? If this is a salesman, then he always has reasons to explain the lack of sales, then the day is unsuccessful, then the color of the models, then the customers are dull. This person is always destructive.

2. Sabotage. From far away, an action similar to what was expected, but carried out for other purposes. That is, the person really makes a list of customers, really sits down to call them. But not with the purpose of receiving an order, but to come and report: “I called. I got through. They refused. They do not take your shoes, rascals. What should I do next? ”For him, the main thing is to demonstrate that he works well and is capable of a lot, but his boss is to hell. Looking ahead, we say that the most traditional way of influencing such employees is pressure. He is also the most erroneous.

3. Biological norm - optimization of efforts. An employee is not inclined to act against the interests of the company, but is not inclined to act “for”. For example:

- Did you call?

- He called, but did not get through.

- And how often did you call?

- Yes, all week.

- And when was the last time you called?

“Well, three days ago.”

This position of the employee can be justified, but only in those cases where he does not have specific deadlines for the assignment. If the boss has not set these deadlines, then this is his own managerial mistake. The idea should be conveyed to all sales managers that responsibility does not end with the moment: “And I wrote to him!”

One of the tasks of the authorities is to establish the rules of the game. If they are not installed, you can wait as long as you like and demand sales - they will not be. Like saboteurs, optimizers will not sell, but look for reasons why the product is not for sale. We remind you that this is not the fault of people, this is not a feature of their nature, this is a biological norm.

What to do?

If you want to minimize the number of people who are in a state of sabotage and optimization, you should advance (!), That is, before a person starts work, determine how many violations you agree to endure. Someone will consider this mistrust, someone will be glad that they agreed with him on the shore. In this case, the priority should be a system, not an opinion.

What is the difference between error and misconduct?

Error - wrong actions in cases where the correct ones are not formulated. Misconduct - wrong actions in those cases when the right ones are clearly defined in advance.

And in this case, the policy of the companies should be unambiguous: three misconduct - and a person reflects on the meaning of life and eternal values ​​at home. If he is sane, if he knows the rules and does not abide by them, drive him to the neck as quickly as possible. Until your cold calls led to an ice age with customers.

4. Diligence. A person honestly invests in work, but exactly within the framework of the task - not a penny more. What they did not say will not do that. At an elementary level, it manifests itself very simply: the sales manager sees that the tap is flowing, but will remain silent, because he believes that the plumber is responsible for the taps.

5. Loyalty. Does more than what is required of him. But what is very important - within the limits of their authority and never forgetting about their direct responsibilities.

6. Engagement. Burning with desire, doing much more than necessary, literally gushing with ideas. It would seem - here it is ideal! But usually such an employee exaggerates the importance of his role in the company, and such enthusiasts, as a rule, are not friends with diligence. Remaining in the system of regular management, such a person becomes organizationally dangerous. But if most of his ideas can be realized, and it will bring profit, then the most reasonable is to isolate him from operational activities, create an interface for transferring his ideas to the sales department and the conditions for feeding him new ideas.

Most of the sales managers are in the second and third state. There is little to do: transfer them to the fourth and fifth. This is usually done by promising a pay raise. But the paradox is that in a state of stability, a person is not inclined to go for a carrot. He already has it. Let it be smaller, albeit not so juicy. But there is. So, keeping in mind the biological need to save resources, one can easily understand why a person in a state of optimization cannot be motivated by salary increases or future bonuses. Another feature of this state: a person wants to live better, to have more money - but ... someday. Not necessary now.

What to do?

It is necessary to use another tool of influence - coercion. A company cannot depend on whether a person wants to earn more or not (by the way, I probably won’t “discover America” if I say: many people want not to earn, but to get more). Therefore, we need a democratic choice: either - to the garden, or - to work. This means that the small carrot that a person already has must be removed, sadly, completely. But! Faced with such conditions, the employee must be sure that he will earn more than the average market.

Not everyone is able to withstand such pressure. Therefore, you must add to the stick and carrot ... a life buoy! People simply need to be supported morally - by encouragement, training, praise. Coercion, interest, support - a stick, a carrot, a life buoy - these are the three pillars on which regular management is based. And most importantly - systematic !!! You must have all three elements. If you leave only the carrot and the stick, then the company will turn into a "school of survival." If you just have a carrot and a lifebuoy, you will find yourself in a situation of “well-fed cats”: “Why do we need to in Haiti? They feed us well here. ” At nine tenths, the system determines the work !!! One tenth is the consideration of the human factor.

By the way, the question “why?” Is one of the key ones. It helps to understand the real goals of the leader. For example:

- Can you develop a motivation system for our company?

- Yes, why?

- We want to increase labor productivity.

- Are you sure that you need to start with motivation?

Very often, the first thing is to clean up the head of the boss and formulate a strategy and work standards, and motivation in this case is already an applied tool.

Dialogue on subtleties and cynicism

- I propose a method for rational and moderately cynical people. Honestly, how does the approach to man and machine tool differ?

- A person has a soul. You need to understand. We need an approach to it.

- And you try to assemble and disassemble not a computer, but at least a plane.

- At the machine you know that you will get a guaranteed result, and a person is unpredictable.

- Yes, there are more uncertainties. But the machine does not always respond to the press of a button. I with both hands for a fine mental organization. And the only thought I want to convey is that people need to know in order to manage them competently and efficiently. And you need to learn to manage. You can’t just sit in a chair and get a result. A leader is not a position. This is a profession.

“And which manager do you think is good?”

- I divide all working people into three categories: geniuses, professionals and freeloaders.

Geniuses are those who, not knowing how and what to do, get amazing results. The worst mistake is to make them leaders. An ingenious seller needs just one glance to understand what approach is needed to a person. And when he is made a leader, he becomes powerless. He is only angry: “Well, what is there inexplicably? This person needs to be told exactly this and that. How do you not see this? ”And others may not really see. A brilliant seller does not know how he does this, so he cannot explain. His approach cannot be decomposed and cannot be replicated.

Professionalism begins where common sense ends. Professionalism begins where it is incomprehensible ... When, in unusual conditions, a person makes the best decision. You can become a professional because it is a technology, it consists of elements, it is replicable.

If the employee does not belong to the first or second category, then he is a freeloader.

- What if the manager says that he will leave for another company?

- The worst mistake is to refuse personnel requirements under the fear that they will leave for another company. In fact, when the rules of work are clearly formulated, they do not want to be violated.

- What if a person tries, but he does not succeed?

- If this is sabotage, eliminate the cause. If this is diligence crazy - punished mercilessly. Either you as a leader (and then you have the opportunity to work effectively), or the market (and then the market changes you). That is, either dismissal or loss of effectiveness.

Before starting to advise a company, I usually ask two questions:

- And what are your responsibilities as a leader in the field of managing subordinates?

- And what is your corporate governance scheme?

Even managers with 15 years of experience can not always immediately answer these two fundamental questions.

For your information:

Typical Management Mistakes

Natural (inevitable):

- erroneous forecast of market trends, possible actions of competitors, demand;

- incorrect assessment of the situation in the organization, product quality, employees' abilities.


- rejection of the transition from the “order-execution” management model to the “coordination of interests” model;

- the tendency to agree on all decisions until a certain “ideal” option is obtained or until the maximum satisfaction of all key employees is achieved;

- reluctance to use high-quality incentive methods ("nonsense that cannot be counted"), an underestimated assessment of the real potential of employees;

- fear of delegating authority to subordinates;

- the desire to know and control in the organization of everyone and everything ("information greed");

- emphasis on employees' omissions, and not on the assessment of their achievements (demotivating leadership style).


- patterns of change in the stages of development of the company;

- methods of formulating job responsibilities;

- modern motivational systems.


- formulate the goals of the company;

- communicate goals to employees;

- calculate the feasibility of decisions;

- plan multivariate;

- ensure the actual implementation of decisions;

- haste in the assignment of tasks, which causes the subordinates to have the installation: "Do not rush to carry out - they will soon cancel it";

- the habit of setting unrealistic "mobilization" deadlines for completing tasks.

Any system tends to rest, and control is to bring the body out of the state in which it is comfortable. From here arises an infinite number of conflicts between leaders ...
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