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Sales Director

Education and Training: Bachelor’s
Average Salary: $147,200 per year
Job Outlook: Good

A sales director is a senior level sales representative for a company who is in charge of one or more sales teams. The structure of the actual sales teams depend on the industry and the company for which the sales director works. However, sales directors have similar responsibilities, the main goal of which is to help their sales team meet quarterly and annual sales targets.

In order to do this, a sales director will often help develop sales targets as well as training programs for lower level sales employees, work with account managers, regional managers, and staff to develop better sales techniques, and create policies and plans to help the company sell more efficiently. Sales directors may also work with some larger account holders in order to keep the accounts on firm footing, and they may work with different analytical tools to find ways the sales of the company could improve in the next quarter or year.

Many sales directors are now responsible for researching online sales trends so that they can take advantage of the latest technology when helping their team with sales. Sales directors who oversee online as well as phone or in-person sales are likely to make a higher salary for their extra expertise.

Education and Training Requirements

Most companies will only hire sales directors with at least a Bachelor’s degree in sales, and an MBA can certainly broaden job prospects and salary negotiations for a potential sales director. Sales directors are often promoted from within the ranks of salespeople, and most companies will only hire directors who have actual sales experience.

Some training is done on the job, though sales directors may be expected to stay on top of the latest trends through their own research and training initiatives.

Getting the Job

Many larger companies prefer to promote sales directors from within their own ranks of experienced sales representatives. This is because these representatives are already familiar with company products and policies and are easier to train. Sales clerks and representatives from other companies can sometimes find jobs as sales directors at new companies provided they have excellent sales experience.

Job Prospects, Employment Outlook and Career Development

Like other sales related jobs, sales director jobs are largely dependent on the economy, though they’re expected to grow at an average rate in the next few years. However, these jobs can be quite competitive, so directors with more experience and professional expertise will be more likely to land the best sales director positions.

Sales director jobs can be the end of the line for sales representatives in many companies. However, directors in sales may go on to take on greater responsibilities as a vice president of sales, depending on the company they’re working for.

Working Conditions and Environment

Some travel to meet with regional sales teams may be required, but this depends on the setup of the individual company. Most sales directors work from a centrally located office and do much of their communicating online or over the telephone. This salaried position may sometimes require long hours during times of transition or busy seasons for the company, but most sales directors can limit their workweek to a daytime workday.

Salary and Benefits

The average sales director salary is about $147,200 per year, though it can range from $100,000 to almost $200,000 per year, depending on the director’s level of experience and education, the size of team the director is overseeing, and the type of company he or she works for.

Sales director positions are typically full-time and include a full benefits package. They usually are eligible for company salaries, too, especially if their sales teams perform particularly well during a certain business period.

Where to Go for More Information

MBA Association

MBA World
25 Hosier Lane
London, UK EC1A9LQ
+44 (0)20-7246-2686

The Sales Management Association
1440 Dutch Valley Pl. NE, Ste. 990
Atlanta, GA 30324
(404) 963-7992

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