What Your VP of Sales Job Description Reveals About Your Company


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You can learn a lot by examining the job descriptions of sales leaders. In fact, you can discover what is expected of leadership, how an organization is structured, and what a company values. These are just a few of the insights I gained while conducting an informal research of job descriptions for vice president of sales positions. I wanted to learn about what companies value in a sales leader, and the findings are quite revealing.

The typical job description for a VP of sales reads something like the following:

Seeking a vice president of sales to direct and coordinate domestic and global sales. Essential duties and responsibilities of a vice president of sales include:

– Design strategic sales and customer management plans
– Establish goals and monitor achievement
– Develop and share best practices across the organization
– Ensure there is proper infrastructure for accurate forecasting and reporting
– Develop and implement a focused selling strategy for short-term and long-term growth
– Play a hands-on role with the field sales organization, maintaining personal presence and high visibility in the field
– Directly participate in closing key accounts

Nothing out of the ordinary, right? You’ve probably encountered dozens of these job descriptions yourself, but have you stopped to think about what is not included in the job description? Do you notice anything conspicuously absent from the description? How about coaching? Nowhere does it say that a VP of sales has direct responsibility for coaching and developing sales managers. In fact, in my evaluation of dozens of VP of sales job descriptions, coaching is not mentioned once, yet research shows that coaching is one of the most effective tools when it comes to improving performance.

We have found that sales leaders, when they interact with their managers, tend to focus on what they need from the sales managers (e.g., reporting and forecasts) more than what they can do for their sales managers. Even when sales leaders are involved in field activities, it usually doesn’t involved coaching.

This begs the question, “Do sales managers really need coaching?” The answer is, “It depends.” Do you want your sales managers to increase their performance? Then, yes, sales managers need coaching from sales leaders! Everyone needs reinforcement to help them through challenges, and that includes sales managers.

If your sales managers are receiving training but still aren’t achieving the desired results, take a good hard look at the role of second line sales leaders in your organization. See if the missing piece might just be the coaching of your sales managers.

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Michelle Vazzana
Michelle Vazzana is a partner at Vantage Point Performance and co-author of Cracking the Sales Management Code. Vazzana has more than 28 years of successful sales and management experience in the major account environment. For more information, visit www.vantagepointperformance.com.


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