He was the best performing salesperson for the past three years. He was Exuberant, Excited and Ecstatic. He invited his friends for a drink later in the evening. He had been promoted from Sales Executive to Sales Manager leading a team of “10.”
I met him 90 days later. He was struggling and putting in long hours. His Exuberance, Excitement and Ecstasy had evaporated like the fresh water from the desert. What had gone WRONG and RIGHT? Well let’s touch upon what had gone RIGHT? Mr. Best performer was rewarded for his consistent performance and promoted to the position of Sales Manager. And what had gone WRONG? The business had promoted a PRODUCER to a SALES MANAGER but did not prepare him. He was learning the hard way – TRY FRY and BUY.
Mr. Best performer was a Sales Executive. He was a soloist skilled in the art of activities, verbal communication, reporting facts, self-motivation and consistently achieving his sales targets. On the flip side when he was promoted to the position of Sales Manager, he was expected to transform from a caterpillar into a butterfly. He was expected to wear many hats….
- An ORCHESTRA player and not a Soloist
- A THINKING person and not an activity person
- LEAD and take DECISIONS on his team behalf
- Comfortable with Motivating and giving CONSTRUCTIVE FEEDBACK
- A good teacher who would TRANSFER SKILLS
- A good listener
- Master verbal and WRITTEN communications
- Master reporting facts and ANALYTICS
- Comfortable with NUMBERS
- Deliver TEAM RESULT
- Know where and what to look for and Hire the RIGHT SKILLED people
- And finally balance his time between (Downward and Upward) managing team and business operations
Unfortunately habits die hard and his seniors did not GROOM him for the challenge. Consequently Mr. Best performer was continuing practicing to be the ACTIVITY man not realizing one person can’t deliver the performance of “10” professionals. He had failed miserably in the first 90 days.