7 Dumb Things All Sales Managers Do (Which Annoy Sales People)

Sales managers can be the WORST.

They can make your sales career hell and limit the amount of money you bring home each month.

If you clicked this post you’ve likely had a bad experience with one.

Here are the 7 things that dumb sales managers do which annoy the heck out of their sales teams –


1) Change the commission goal posts


There is nothing more frustrating for a sales person than to be working towards one target and to have it moved at the last minute.

It gets even more annoying when it’s changes to commission structure and the sales manager shrugs it off and acts like…


2) Acting like you’re their best friend


Everyone has worked with a sales manager who invites them out for drinks or wants to know way to much about your partner and where you party on the weekend.

We’re professionals. We want you to coach us not best-friend us.


3) Has limited vision


Often sales managers know what numbers their sales reps are likely to bring in due to historical data they can access.

That’s fine. But I’m not Fred, the overweight, bald, stressed, scared of the phone rep that was on this territory before me.

Commissions wise we’re happy for sales managers to have limited expectations of what’s going to come in during the year.

In meetings with us though they need to at least be as positive, excited and have a similar hustler mindset otherwise they’ll hold our performance back over the long run.

Even worse is when they…


4) Micro managing


Do you really need to know where I am this Thursday at 4.15pm?!

You hired me!

If you don’t trust me to to do my job then you are the one that should be monitored or sacked.


5) Not being a good role model


When sales managers are constantly, red faced, shouting and overtly stressed we have to wonder if they’re really in a position that they can add value to us as sales people.

Would you take personal fitness classes from  an obese dude?

Of course not.


6) Being behind the times with technology


There is no excuse for a sales person to know more about the latest sales enablement tool than their sales manager.

Sure, by the very nature of a sales manager coming up from being a sales professional they tend to be slightly older than the people they’re managing.

There is a slight (at the risk of sounding ageist) possibility that they’re just not as interested in new technology as their fresh young sales reps.

That is no excuse.

It’s their job to make the sales process as profitable and as smooth a process as possible. Technology clearly helps with this.


7) Being two faced


Sure we get it. The sales director is your boss. You have to look good in front of them.

But when you tell us one thing and then twist the story when you go to your manager or blame us for something that was partly your fault, we get annoyed.

If you say you’ve got our back, make sure you do because we’re the ones that bring in your commission bonus at the end of the year.


Staff writer at Salesman.Red, ex medical devices salesperson, love for all things influence and sales.

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