The Skills You Need to Become a Sales Director

BUSINESS & MANAGEMENT, CAREER ADVICE   |   4 minutes  |   June 4, 2018

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How do you advance into the role of Sales Director? Perhaps you entered this career path as a Sales Representative, a Buyer or moved over from another relevant professional position. A sure way to strengthen your promotion opportunities is to take advantage of further training, or continuing education through online short courses to highlight and develop your sales capabilities.

New Skills Academy1 says a Sales Director is someone who:

  • Has great organisational skills: from managing a sales team to finding time for presentations, a Sales Director will need to develop a sales-oriented pitch to a wide variety of audiences to drive business growth
  • Has great motivational skills: anyone responsible for managing a team will need to have the ability to drive a team forward and inspire creativity and input from each individual
  • Is enthusiastic: a person with a dull personality is not a good seller – to engage with your prospects, it’s essential to believe in the product you’re selling, be consumer-oriented, and pitch with enthusiasm
  • Can manage stress: tight deadlines and sales targets bring with them a pool of pressure, especially when you’re expected to be motivational and organised during the difficult moments – if you’re stressed, your team will be too, so it’s essential to keep your cool as often as possible
  • Is a great communicator: whether it’s face-to-face, on the telephone, or in emails or reports, strong communication skills will be needed to ensure you’re always explaining yourself properly and giving good instruction and direction

Find out from five leaders in the sales arena on what they believe got them to a place of securing this role.

  1. Nazley Brooks, Head of Sales in Sales and Enrolments at GetSmarter describes how it’s essential to learn new things in this career path and not be left behind in this constantly-changing environment.
  2. Anthony Iannarino, Sales Leader and creator of The Sales Blog says it’s important to remember as a Sales Director, you are now not a salesman, but a leader, expected to take on the quota of every individual in your team. The only way to reach these quotas is to focus on your team’s success and growth.
  3. John Barrows, previous Director of Sales and Training at Basho Technologies, and Owner of JBarrows Sales Training describes how the role of a Sales Director is to act like a scientist rather than an artist – be as objective as possible, and replicate methods in the past that saw success.
  4. Babette Ten Haken, Founder and President of Sales Aerobics for Engineers says being a top seller does not necessarily mean you will be an amazing Sales Director. It’s important to work towards making everyone in the team a better overall working professional instead of trying to make everyone an expert Sales Rep constantly chasing after the quarterly quota.
  5. DeWet Herbst, Director of Sales and Marketing at Coastal Timber Mouldings describes how he doesn’t necessarily see becoming a Director as an accomplishment, but rather the real accomplishment is the results that can be seen from hard work and dedication. “Do not judge your accomplishments by the title you have at your company, rather give yourself a pat-on-the-back for the results that you achieved,” he says.
Which skills do you need to advance in your career to Sales Director?

Download a course prospectus to find out how this online short course can help you become a Sales Director.