“I’m swamped right now”

“I’m way too busy to do that”

“I’ll need to call you back, I’m way behind right now”…

Does this sound like you?

If you’re like me, there is a HUGE tendency for sales managers to get bogged down in far too many administrative duties, conference calls, time-wasting phone calls, useless meetings and mindless corporate initiatives – all repetitive activities that do nothing but waste your time – when you should be focused on more meaningful and lucrative tasks.

Worst of all (and the biggest time waster) is: YOU DOING YOUR SALESPEOPLE’S JOB FOR THEM!

Here’s the real problem: while you’re spending so much time on these useless tasks,you aren’t even coming close to spending time working on the things that will get you what your really want, namely increased sales from your salespeople!

For example, think of this common scenario: one of your sales reps calls you and asks you the same kind of question he’s been asking you for the last three months.

What do you do? You answer those questions.

So what do you think he’ll do the next time he has the same question?

That’s right – he’ll call you again, and again, and again, and so on…

Worse yet, he calls, you take the call, answer the question, and if you don’t know the exact answer or you have to talk to someone before you answer the question you say: “OK, I’ll have to get back to you on that…”

You, (trying to help of course, because you are a very attentive and caring sales manager, after all) now need to make five other calls to three other people and seven emails to five different people to get the answer to the question you were just asked!!!

Meanwhile, more emails and messages continue to pile up in your inbox and your voice mailbox that you need to answer…because those are even more questions that require even more phone calls and emails to even more people and so on and on it goes….

(I think I have to stop and take a break for a minute, because my chest is starting to tighten)….

So if you actually do the math, you are working sixteen hours a day and NOW getting paid less! Your hourly wage has technically DECREASED.

Most sales managers are under the mistaken impression you must do the work of their salespeople, work EXTREMELY hard and put in LONG hours in order to get your salespeople to both achieve their potential as well as make lots of money.

This is simply NOT TRUE.

Here’s the paradox…the best sales managers actually get more out of their salespeople if they do less for them!


Ok, let me ask you this: if you’re working increasing hours each week and keep taking how the same pay and…who’s the insane one now?

The best sales managers eliminate themselves as “tollbooths through which all decisions must pass” by empowering their salespeople to make decisions on their own.

The completely counter-intuitive effects of this “removing the tollbooth” approach is:

1. This actually MOTIVATES your sales reps to do even more – because they’ll feel the empowerment of “doing it on their own”

2. This then leads to a reverse insanity spiral of you the sales manager doing less work….your salespeople doing more

3. You BOTH make more money

And while they’re doing all the work you used to do, you’re focusing on “the important stuff” – namely the stuff that will help both you and them to sell more effectively and make more money, while achieving the success you have both been dreaming of.

To learn more about sales management, visit my blog about sales management training at http://www.topsalesmanagerblog.com

Author's Bio: 

Ralph Burns, a consistently top-performing sales manager with over 20 years of sales and sales management experience.