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Shane Decker

Here’s What Your Sales Floor Manager Should Be Doing

And you shouldn’t be paying them commission.

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YOUR SALES FLOOR manager has more responsibilities than any other employee in your organization. First, they don’t have an office, and they don’t live in the back of the store. Their office is the sales floor, and their top responsibility is store floor awareness – what’s happening on the sales floor. Who’s waiting on whom, do they need an assist, has that client been greeted? They are responsible for training the sales staff in all areas of salesmanship, product and gemological knowledge, inventory, and teamwork. Their No. 1 priority is the client and their No. 1 asset is their team.

The sales floor manager is usually paid a salary, never a commission on their sales. If they’re paid commission on their personal sales, they’re competing with their sales team, which creates a problem. It makes the sales team not want to call the sales manager into a sale because they don’t want a split. The manager needs to be able to come in and help them close the sale while never putting their name on the sales ticket. They’re there to help their sales team succeed – not to take away, but to add to their selling strengths.

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The sales floor manager must be able to walk into a sales presentation uninvited if the salesperson is struggling. Whether it’s product or gemological knowledge, walking away from the presentation too many times, a personality conflict, or simply not closing, the sales manager has a right to come in and do a professional team sale to make the client happy. Clients love it when they feel extra important and special. The sales floor manager can make this happen.

The sales floor manager is also responsible for setting each salesperson’s goal for the year. A good place to start is 10 percent more than the year prior. Managers should have sales goals that are one-half the amount of the top writer in your store. So if your top salesperson sells $750,000 in a year, the sales floor manager’s goal is $375,000. This way, they lead by example and catch the overflow clients when there are more clients than salespeople in the store.

Too many stores want their sales floor manager to be their top writer. This creates a lot of problems. Why? Because now the manager is worried about their own sales instead of helping the team. Instead, have the sales manager receive 1 percent of the net profit on team sales for the month. This is their commission and motivation to help everyone on the sales floor close and improve on their presentation. It keeps them from being a competitor and creates a lot more professional teamwork.

It’s the sales floor manager’s responsibility to maintain price integrity so that profits are not hurt. They should also hold a one-hour sales training meeting per week at minimum. They need to meet with your inventory manager on what’s needed and how fast sellers are doing. The sales floor manager is responsible for hiring and firing of the sales team as needed. At the end of the day, this manager is responsible for all areas of each client’s experience in your store.

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The less a team is trained, the harder the job responsibilities of the sales floor manager. But the better they’re trained, the easier the sales floor manager’s job is. In fact, all team members should be trained and better at their individual skill sets than the sales floor manager. I go into stores every week and see associates asking the manager questions during every presentation. This is a sign your team is not well-trained enough. Knowledge is power.

Shane Decker has provided sales training to more than 3,000 jewelry stores. Shane cut his teeth in jewelry sales in Garden City, KS, and sold over 100 1-carat diamonds four years in a row. Contact him at [email protected].

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