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Last updateWed, 29 Jul 2015 8pm

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Sales Manager - the toughest job!

I really believe that the job of sales manager is one of the toughest, if not the toughest job in retail. Too often a person is made the sales manager simply because they were one of the best salespeople. Too many times the sales manager is given the job without any formal training or guidance and they are expected to get salespeople to perform. Hopefully this article will shed a little bit of light on the expectations and the strategies necessary to be a successful sales manager.

Training salespeople

As a business owner or sales manager, the first thing that we need to realize is that we are in the business of hiring and training salespeople for the rest of our business lives. Just when you think you have a permanent staff that is fully trained, something will happen. Salespeople will leave, get promoted, forget their past training, or the industry will change. Customer buying habits will change and in all likelihood, the merchandise will change. Everything is always changing. Therefore our training efforts must never stop.

Coaching & selling value!

Years ago, when I started my career in retail I was required to read a book titled “Successful Shoe Salesmanship” by Dr. William Rossi. One statement from that book has stood out in my mind for over thirty years. The statement was: “Give your shoes a reason for being and you give your customer a reason for buying.” In other words, it is up to the salesperson to create value in the merchandise they are selling, whether the item is shoes, jewelry, furniture, electronics or space shuttles.

Wake up jewelry retailers!

It’s time to step it up or you may find yourself stepping aside! I say this with the highest degree of respect for the industry and the people within the jewelry industry. I believe in the independent retailer and the small businessperson of this country and want to pass along any knowledge to help them not only survive but to thrive.

Master your destiny: as a salesperson and as a sales manager

I believe that the finest salespeople look at their careers as an opportunity to build a business within a business.  A commissioned jewelry salesperson has the opportunity to make as much money as they want.  A salesperson can choose to be average, below average or exceptional.  The decision is solely that, a choice that each and every salesperson makes all on their own.  The only person that is holding them back from reaching their goals and aspirations, in many cases, is the person that looks back at them in the mirror every day.  As I stated, a commissioned jewelry salesperson can make all the money they want to and at the same time, someone else has all the expenses and the liabilities.  Thus, the following is my definition of a true sales professional.

Recruiting & hiring salespeople: Your people set you apart from the competition

Have you ever hired somebody that you felt was going to be a fabulous salesperson and they ended up stinking up the place and not working out? On the other hand have you ever hired somebody and settled for what you felt was a warm body, and they ended up being one of the best people you have ever hired? I am sure the answer is “yes” if you have hired any number of people for your business. Effective hiring has always, and will continue to be, one of the great mysteries. However, I know that the only thing that really separates one jewelry store from another is the people that they have dealing with and selling to their customers. The following are some points to help increase you chances of hiring the right person for your sales position.

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