Stupid sales managers never cease to amaze me. Or, more specifically, I’m especially amazed at how many stupid sales managers still have jobs!

I’ve heard a couple of real doozies in the past week, and wanted to share them with you, so here are both for your amusement!

Sales Manager Horror Story #1

I just took on a new sales training & marketing strategy client. On our initial call, before we got down to business, we shared some old “war stories” from our sales careers, and he had a real whopper for me.

He was brought in as sales director at a company whose sales were suffering.


Because the sales reps were told to do nothing but … wait for it … COLD CALL!

It was one of those micro-managed horror offices where you had to check in at 5:30 PM every day with your stack of business cards to “prove” you’d knocked on enough doors.

In any case, my client came in, put a stop to all that nonsense, implemented what he’d learned from my Never Cold Call Again system, and sales skyrocketed! Better yet, sales turnover dropped, which is a big deal, because in preparation for a presentation I’m giving tonight, I learned that the cost of turnover per salesperson is equal to 150-200% of that person’s annual salary. (Wow!)

When he eventually resigned to start the company I’m now helping him with, they went back to their old ways, and took it a step further: All sales reps now have GPS tracking devices on their cars so Big Brother Sales Manager can keep tabs on them all day.

THIS IS INSANITY! And, needless to say, sales dropped to an even lower level than before my friend took over.

Sales Manager Horror Story #2

Here’s a real email that came into our helpdesk yesterday:

I just read about ‘crap that comes out of salespeople’s mouths’, and had to share this story. Some time ago I got into contact with a company owner in New England who was looking for people to cold call for his consulting business. When I touched base with him, I told him that I had access to several groups that were already doing business with his ideal prospects and that I wanted to set up a plan for him to contact those prospects all at once instead of one at a time.

His response was, “I’m looking for dialers, not order takers.”

WOW! Another moron! Do these unqualified, idiot managers not realize that becoming an order taker is the pinnacle of success for a salesperson? But I guess people like this have some kind of Napoleon complex and a desire to rule others.

How To Avoid Big Brother Sales Managers

If you don’t want an overbearing sales manager breathing down your neck, there are two ways around it:

1. Quit and go sell for someone else. I know jobs are tight in this economy, but if you’re being forced to cold call 40 hours a week, you’re not going to sell much anyway.

2. Sell SO MUCH – I mean blow your numbers out of the water, to the 200% amount and beyond, and your manager won’t care if you show up to work in your underwear, because those numbers are making him look good AND are showing up in HIS commission check.

Regardless of which path you choose, you’ll never succeed if you don’t know how to really make a ton of sales, consistently, month after month. And cold calling will never get you there.