what is a head of sales?

As the head of sales, you manage the sales team in various activities, including defining and communicating key performance indicators and targets. You also analyse market trends and consumer behaviours and develop strategies to boost sales in the new markets. You make data-driven decisions to optimise the company's commercial performance.

You rely on data to analyse patterns, understand your consumer base and study the sales department's performance. Your head of sales role involves knowing your competition and developing new ways to outsell them. Your responsibilities also include managing external partners and collaborating with internal departments to increase company revenue.

As a supervisor, you lead the sales department by developing sales targets, identifying growth opportunities and developing the product mix. You manage the department's calendar, from trading priorities to launches, campaign activities and promotions. You also take responsibility for the mistakes and negative performances of the department. You mentor other sales professionals and guide them to achieve the department's vision and goals.

As the head of sales, you play a strategic role in the company by driving enhanced revenue generation activities in your department. Your job is to deliver an optimised market mix and expand the company's market share and consumer base. You use analytics to measure the successes and weaknesses of sales strategies.

Would working as the head of sales suit your commercial acumen and analytical skills? Then read on to find out what competencies and qualifications you need to thrive in a head of sales role.  

head of sales roles

average salary of a head of sales

A head of sales earns an average annual salary of ₹8,61,210 or ₹381 per hour. Candidates with more experience can expect to earn significantly higher wages. Salaries in larger cities are generally higher. For example, pay offers for head of sales roles in Kolkata recently have averaged ₹12,67,874. While most sales professionals receive commissions, the head of sales typically only earns bonuses for achieving milestones and steering the team to achieve targets. 

ways to boost your salary as the head of sales

The principal determiner of your compensation package is the size of the company. A large organisation can afford to pay workers more. Besides, roles in big companies are more complex, and your compensation should reflect the effort and expertise you bring to your role.

The location also influences pay structures since the demands and costs of living impact salaries. When you work in a large city, you are likely to earn more due to the higher demand for employees. In small towns, both the need for heads of sales and the cost of living are lower. 

head of sales roles
head of sales roles

types of head of sales


Some of the types of heads of sales include:

  • regional head of sales: as the head of sales, you can be in charge of a specific region. That means you oversee sales functions in a designated area to ensure smooth operations. Your job is to grow the company's market share in the region and achieve set targets by empowering field sales agents and sales managers.
  • branch head of sales: when you manage the sales activities of a particular branch, your job is to direct the sales managers and executives working under you. Your job involves recruiting sales managers, setting targets and supervising the sales activities in the branch. You also manage warehouse activities and evaluate sales performance compared to other branches in the organisation.

working as a head of sales

Working as a head of sales involves leading the entire sales team, from field sales representatives to sales managers. The role requires exceptional leadership skills and self-motivation to inspire others to work hard and achieve the company's targets. Let's explore what the head of sales does daily.


education and skills

The following qualifications will improve your chances of becoming a head of sales:

  • bachelor's degree: the start of your career in sales will likely rest on a bachelor's degree. Subjects like business management, communications, marketing or sales are suitable. Some employers may hire promising candidates without a degree for more junior sales roles. However, a bachelor's degree will stand you in good stead if you want to move on to higher roles.
  • master's degree: as you rise to the head of sales role, you will be expected to have gained an MBA, preferably in sales and marketing.
  • work experience: you cannot become the head of sales without extensive work experience. Apart from internships, it is beneficial to work in junior sales or marketing positions to learn the ropes. A strong work ethic is required too. 

skills and competencies

The personal qualities of a head of sales include:

  • analytical skills: as the head of sales, you rely on research and data-driven insights to formulate strategies and measure the sales performance of your department. Your analytical skills enable you to understand marketplace models for measuring performance. These skills also help you evaluate performance and develop new strategies. 
  • computing skills: as the head of sales, proficiency in Microsoft Office applications is required, especially Word and PowerPoint, to create reports and presentations for senior sales management teams. Computing skills are also helpful in analysing performance and making comparisons.
  • interpersonal skills: as the head of sales, your interpersonal skills help to build trust and encourage openness with your sales team and external stakeholders. Interpersonal skills help you thrive and work comfortably in group settings. They also improve your persuasiveness and leadership.
  • people and leadership skills: as the head of sales, you perform a supervisory role that requires leadership skills. You should be able to inspire and motivate a large group of people in a unified direction or vision. As the company's representative, your people skills make you approachable to customers and help you build lasting relationships on behalf of the business.

FAQs about working as a head of sales

FAQs about working as a head of sales:

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