Head of Sales

The Head of Sales has the primary role of leading the sales department, overseeing activities of the junior and senior professionals and monitoring performance as a whole. The Head of Sales defines and communicates the business’s KPIs and targets to junior sales personnel on a regular basis, analyses patterns in consumer and market behavior, and subsequently defines data-driven action strategies in order to consistently optimize the business’s commercial performance.

The role of Head of Sales is a data-driven role that requires commercial acumen and a deep understanding of the consumer base, the competitive market, and an ability to analyze sales department performance. The Head of Sales role is an integral part of the business in that it also involves the management of external partners and collaborations with numerous internal departments.

Objectives and Responsibilities of the Head of Sales

Leadership/Supervisory Role: The very first role of the Head of Sales is to provide leadership over the sales department. The Head of Sales is in charge of developing weekly/monthly/annual and seasonal sales targets for the department, examining growth opportunities, enabling sales improvements, product mix development, and taking responsibility for the department’s performance against targets.

Using his expertise and experience, the Head of Sales also manages the departmental calendar in regard to trading priorities inclusive of launches, promotions, exclusives, and campaign activities for the purpose of maximizing sales opportunities. In his leadership capacity, the Head of Sales introduces new brands and categories to the market by leading the sales team in product launches.

In this capacity, the Head of Sales is tasked with establishing and overseeing the adoption of departmental vision and values, which forms part of the work culture. He also plays a mentorship role to key positions within the sales department, assisting in the execution of duties upon request, honing their professional skills, and readying them for occupation of his position in his absence or retirement.

Strategy: The Head of Sales also plays a major strategic role in the sales department. He is tasked with implementing sales strategies that further the department’s agenda and drives enhanced revenue generation for the business. The Head of Sales delivers an optimized market mix relative to the core target consumers and identifies the roadmap that will lead to achievement of the department’s goals as well as the overall goals of the business. The Head of Sales, along with the senior sales management, creates and implements sales action plans that incorporate key actions that work to set KPI’s for the business.

Analytics: The Head of Sales utilizes analytics tools and works with the analytics team in undertaking detailed analyses of sales performance for the purpose of reporting sales strategy successes, weaknesses, and opportunities to senior sales management. Through his various research and analyses, the Head of Sales identifies areas of improvement in sales strategies and with a view of establishing actionable insights for the improving of sales and business profits.

He also monitors and observes the brand and makes forecasts, identifying new trends ahead of the curve, hence, offering the business a competitive advantage and keeping it ahead of its competition in the market.

Collaboration: The position of Head of Sales is also highly collaborative and, as such, the Head of Sales  teams up with the product development departments in creating product intelligence, for example, product/brand adjacencies, affinities, display rules, conducting trend analysis, and ensuring that these are aligned to support and drive sales and conversion.

In this collaboration, he also monitors the development of the business’s product from its conceptualization through to its testing and launch and, therefore, carefully understands the product whose sales he is supposed to spearhead, making it easy to tailor unique strategies around that product.

The Head of Sales also works closely with the analytics department in processing relevant data and information, translating it into actionable strategies that drive sales and lead to achievement of targets. He similarly partners with the senior sales management for administrative purposes, for example, the development of plans, strategies, structure, budget, vision, and establishment of goals for the department.

Knowledge/Relationships/Opportunity: The Head of Sales is also tasked with managing key relationships on behalf of the business. The Head of Sales builds strong relationships with the external partners and consumers and regularly interacts with them by attending sales workshops, seminars and hosting events, hosting sales events for the business’s product, playing an active role in industry organizations and so forth.

These efforts establish the business as a market and thought leader and open up avenues for identification of potential opportunities for sales and revenue generation. In this capacity, the Head of Sales also conducts regular and consistent research on the latest market best practices and trends in order to constantly keep the business at par or even ahead of other players and driving greater sales resulting from the securing a greater market share.

Other Duties: The Head of Sales also performs other duties as he deems necessary for the execution of his duties and duties as assigned by the Director of Sales, the Chief Sales Officer, or the Employer.

Required Qualifications of the Head of Sales

Educations: The Head of Sales must have a master’s degree (PhD preferred) in Communications, Marketing, Business Management, Business Administration, or any other related filed. The equivalent of this in working experience is also acceptable for the position.

Experience: The Head of Sales must have had at least 10 years of working experience in a sales position within a fast-paced and dynamic business environment, preferably working in the position of a Senior Sales Manager. The candidate must also have a proven and successful ability to lead a group of sales personnel towards growth in enhanced sales volumes and enhanced revenue generation, while displaying exceptional leadership skills and confidence. A suitable candidate will also have had experience evaluating product/market situations and analyzing raw data and information, transforming it into actionable sales strategies and approaches.

Communication Skills: The Head of Sales must possess exceptional communication skills that are especially important in enabling effective communication between his interactions with consumers and external partners. The performance of junior sales personnel will also be highly dependent on the clarity of communication of information and instructions from the Head of Sales, making these skills a must have for the position.

Communication skills are also absolutely necessary for the Head of Sales when it comes to drafting reports and making presentations to consumers, senior sales management, stakeholders, or external partners. He must be able to tailor messages in relation to the audience at hand and to present even the most complex messages in clear, simple, digestible, and convincing terms. These skills must be excellent in both written and verbal form.

Ms Office: The Head of Sales must demonstrate high proficiency in Ms Word and PowerPoint, which are necessary for the creating both visually and verbally engaging reports and presentations for the senior sales management, junior sales personnel, external partners, collaborating personnel, and relevant stakeholders.

Analytical Skills: A candidate for this position must also have a keen interest in conducting research and data-driven insights coupled without standing planning & analytical capabilities. The candidate will have an in-depth knowledge of the business’s product as well as standard strategic, analytical, and marketing concepts.

A suitable candidate for this position will also have a deep understanding of the business’s marketplace models as well as the opportunities and limitations that come along with it.

Interpersonal Skills: The Head of Sales will posses certain interpersonal skills that will encourage openness and trust both internally and externally. He will be self-motivated, have a strong entrepreneurial spirit, be adaptable to business growth fluctuations, work comfortably and effortlessly in group settings, be a persuasive and charismatic individual, thrive in a fast-paced environment, and work well under the pressure of stringent deadlines. The Head of Sales will also demonstrate calmness under stressful situations and in uncertainty, inspiring the same in his team.

Leadership/People Skills: A candidate for this position needs to demonstrate exceptional leadership skills, portraying an ability to move and inspire a large group in a unified direction and vision. Being a representative of the business, he must also be a likable and approachable individual who is able to form strong and long-lasting relationships both internally and externally on behalf of the business.

Career path