Duties and responsibilities
A district sales manager has a lot of responsibility. They tend to serve as a liaison between regional sales managers and the companies headquarters. They are responsible for overseeing the management of sales teams within their designated district. They must ensure that all the teams within the district are providing exceptional customer service and are working hard to maximise sales potential. They can work in any sector (e.g., household, pharmacy, food, bakery, gifts) and typically will have anywhere between eight to twenty stores to oversee. Their typical duties and responsibilities include:
- Acting as a liaison between headquarters and the regional manager
- Regularly visiting and interacting with regional managers
- Coordinating with, reporting and making recommendations to senior management in order to grow market share, improve customer service and drive growth
- Analyzing regional data to improve
- Motivating regional managers, so that they are committed and dedicated to maintain profit margins and implement business plans
- Applying innovative approaches and techniques to keep updated with competition
All district sales managers will need significant work experience in the industry. Most companies will promote district sales managers from regional manager roles, as they will already be well trained and experienced in company policies and procedures. It is possible to progress into district management positions with only a high school diploma. However, it is highly advisable to achieve a bachelor’s degree in a related field, such as business management or finance. To have the best job prospects, a masters in Business Administration is advisable.
Skills and relevant work experience
As well as relevant work experience, district managers will need skills such as:
- Verbal and written communication skills, as district sales managers will need effectively communicate with regional managers and head office and they will need to keep files up to date and respond to emails
- Entrepreneurial mindset, as district sales managers will need to be able to think clearly, set goals and work hard
- Numerical skills, as district sales managers need to manage budgets, stock and employee performance
- Leadership skills, as district managers must manage teams and be confident in implementing strategies and delegating tasks
- Analytical skills, as district managers need to evaluate how their staff are performing and develop strategies for meeting goals
- Decision making skills, as district must be able to make informed and timely decisions
Most district sales managers will work full time. They may often find themselves working overtime and long hours, as well as travelling to different stores across the district and to head office.
According to salary.com the median annual salary for district managers in the United States is $148,416. The bottom 10% can expect to earn less than $93,238 and the highest 10% earn over $225,392 per annum.
District managers tend to progress from sales representative to store manager to regional managers. This progression gives them valuable work experience. They can then progress, with more experience and training, to more senior roles. For example, they may become a national or global manager.