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The Center for Sales Strategy Blog

The Ultimate Bucket List for Sales Managers


Bucket List

A bucket list is an ultimate list of things you would love to have happen, or be able to do, at least once in your lifetime.

While many of us use bucket lists for personal achievements, we couldn't help but wonder what's the ultimate bucket list for a sales manager look like? Improving sales performance in your organization is critical. But how will you get there?

We invited several of our team members to help compile this list, which is certainly not a complete list, so we invite you to add to it in the comment box below.

A Bucket List for Sales Managers

  1. A sales department with zero percent turnover for one solid year.

  2. A week with no emergency emails after 6 p.m. that "absolutely have to be dealt with right now."

  3. A year of making budget in every category and every line that is measured.

  4. Accurate pending.

  5. No money sitting in 90 or 120 days past due.

  6. High-fives and celebrations every day for great work being done.

  7. No HR issues.

  8. Hiring a salesperson who has no experience but is loaded with talent, and through excellent coaching, seeing them go on to ultimate success.

  9. Helping a seller close a 7-figure deal. 

  10. Telling a bad client you no longer want to do business with them— no matter how much money they spend.

  11. Align sellers talents with the right role.

  12. Following through on, and implementing, 100% of the sales strategy plan that you developed before the start of the year.

  13. Receiving more referrals than you can handle with your current sales staff.

  14. Offering gas cards and client entertainment budgets like the old days.

  15. A complete sales team of professionals who take ownership of their business as if it were truly their own, and who dedicate time to sharpening their skills.

  16. A year without excuses for coming in late, having to leave early, or not showing up to work.

  17. Reducing the number of meetings and reports needed from managers so that the majority of the work week is spent in the field coaching sellers.

  18. Reactivating 25% of the accounts that spent money in the previous year.

  19. Fill open sales positions with talented people.

  20. All significant clients ask for a rate increase.

  21. Your boss partners with you to help you develop and grow—just like you do for your sellers.

  22. Creating an innovative new process or system that helps your sellers be more successful.

  23. At some point, every single person on your team shares with you a specific way you’ve helped them grow.

  24. Developing a killer sales marketing plan that clearly differentiates your sales department from all others in the minds of business decision makers—and ultimately enhances the results of FIND and APPROACH for your sellers.

  25. The CEO of your company creates an award for sales managers that recognizes sales management excellence and you win it.

  26. Every seller has a buttoned up, specific plan for Key Accounts and Target Accounts and executes it flawlessly.

  27. By the end of the year, every seller has at least one business development story that they are proud to share.

  28. You have the autonomy to make sure your sales compensation promotes the activities you need from your sales people—building key accounts.  

  29. The ability to spend money, as long as you have a reasonable plan for how it will make money. 

  30. Salespeople who take more notes on their sales calls than you, as their manager, do.

  31. Salespeople who don't forget the important steps on the sales process.

  32. A client-focused attitude from every department, not just sales.  

  33. Your company understands that the primary job of a sales manager should be conducting individual focused meetings (IFMs) on key and target accounts.

  34. There is clear and concise communication about weekly priorities.

  35. Having the people and the resources to consistently deliver strong solutions to clients.

  36. Reducing the attrition rate among key accounts to less than 10%.

  37. Identifying sales structure issues.

  38. Sellers get appointments with qualified prospects on the first try.

  39. Having a sales person tell you that you helped change the outcome of her/his career... for the better.

  40. Being proud of the business you have done… and the way you do it.

What about you? What's on your bucket list? Help add to this list in the comments below. 

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*Editor's Note: This blog was originally written in 2011 and has since been updated.



Topics: sales performance Sales