Today sales management has assumed due to fast-growing changes in the 21st century. As the role of the salesperson has changed, so has that of the sales manager. The demanding, controlling, volume-oriented sales manager is a dying breed.
Today, the most successful sales managers are seen as team leaders rather than Bosses.
They still direct and advise people, but they do so through collaboration and empowerment, rather than control and domination.
To be successful in the 21st century, sales managers like salespeople will need to adapt their strategies, styles, and attitudes.
Sales Management Challenges in the 21st Century
To be successful in the competitive environment in the years ahead, sales managers must develop greater expertise in certain areas.
1. Customer Relationship Management
Most of the managers have stated that the biggest challenge facing them in the coming years will be expanding the relationship with existing customers.
These companies recognize that getting new customers costs more than increasing sales with existing customers.
2. Salesforce Diversity
The workforce is changing in many ways. More women and minorities are entering in personal selling jobs and are advancing into sales management positions.
To remain competitive, sales managers need to capitalize on the strengths of women and minorities in selling and to be aware of what these individuals want in a sales job.
Today’s salesman is much more educated than in the past. These will desire challenges and rewards.
3. Latest Technologies
Electronic technology has enabled salespeople and managers to improve productivity.
To compete effectively, they will have to adopt the latest technologies.
4. Selling Teams
During the 21st century, more companies will respond to the changes in customer buying patterns by using selling teams.
To coordinate the efforts of these teams and to motivate them is a difficult task.
5. Complex Channels of Distribution
Many sales managers will be asked to manage increasingly Complex channels of distribution.
They will oversee a hybrid Salesforce.
They have to organize and coordinate the efforts of these diverse salespeople.
6. An International Perspective
Today, many Global markets are emerging and growing rapidly.
Additionally, sellers face increasing competition from many foreign firms.
Hence, sales managers most manage their salesforce to meet foreign competition.
They must improve their company’s personal selling efforts for countries.
7. Ethical Behaviour and Social Responsibility
The sales management should operate within his moral framework.
Ethical standards differ among various industries and also coming societies.
The sales executives must operate within socially acceptable limits of ethical behavior. Selling today is on an ethical plan far about that of a few decades ago.
Today, sales managers have no choice but to strive to maintain their ethical and Standards in personal selling and sales management.
Sales Management Required New Skills
Some of the new skills and changes are required in the 21st century in the following way:
- Developing a detailed understanding of customers’ business.
- Treating salespeople as equals and working with profitability and customer satisfaction.
- Applying flexible motivational tools to a hybrid Salesforce of telesellers, direct marketers and field salespeople.
- Keeping up to date on the latest technologies affecting the buyer-seller relationship.
- Working closely with other internal departments as a member of the corporate team seeking to achieve customer satisfaction.
- Continually seeking ways to exceed customer expectations and bring added value to the buyer-seller relationship.
- Creating flexible learning and adapting environment.
Thus, now you know the Sales Management Challenges in the 21st Century.