1. Resume Examples
  2. Sales Manager
Written by Paul DruryPaul Drury

Sales Manager Resume Example & Writing Guide

A resume is nothing more than a sales pitch for yourself. The guide below and our tools will help you craft that pitch so you can convert that job lead today.
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Sales Manager Resume Example & Writing Guide
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Uncovering opportunity and driving growth. Every great product or service needs an equally great sales team. In your resume, you are the product. You have an obligation to sell yourself as the “next best thing.” 

Employers experience the communication and influencing skills of a sales manager the moment they read the first few lines. How can those first lines of your sales manager resume prove your sales prowess and earn you an interview?

By applying the same clear, persuasive language you employ when convincing customers.

Propel your job hunt forward with a pitch-perfect resume that sells your career successes and nets you that all-important interview.

Resume guide for a sales manager resume

Much of the job will be spent talking on the phone, over the internet or in person, but when someone has the time to think about what to write about themselves, that content had better be utterly compelling. If you can’t sell yourself, how will you go about selling for your future employer?

But how do you write a resume that provides a stage for your selling skills? Market yourself for success with Resume.io. Our guides and resume examples cover over 500 professions, and our resume builder makes creating a compelling resume easier than ever.

This resume guide and corresponding car sales resume example will cover the following:

  • How to write a sales manager resume
  • Choosing the right resume format for car sales
  • How to add your contact information
  • Using summaries
  • Adding your car sales experience
  • Listing education and relevant experience
  • Picking the right resume design/layout
  • What the sales manager market looks like and what salary you can expect

Along with our resume examples and resume builder tool, we will help you to persuade and influence your dream employer, while ticking the ATS software boxes to make sure it is read in the first place. The secrets of a slick sales resume will be shared with you over the next few pages. Switch on!

How to write a sales manager resume

The very first step in writing your sales manager resume is understanding what sections to include. Your resume should contain the following elements:

No matter what the product or service, the best sales managers share a multitude of common traits. The sales role sits at the intersection of operations, product, marketing and finance, with close collaboration required to ensure that the sales offering is optimized. Analyze which aspects of the role are most important to the job you want and tilt  your value proposition toward those needs. It’s the job of your sales manager resume to highlight how your unique talents and personality can fulfill the needs of the company.

Heighten the message within your resume by attending to the following:

  • Impress with achievements instead of listing responsibilities. How have you boosted sales? What ideas did you implement that brought value to the company? Quantify these accomplishments within your summary and employment history sections.
  • Alert your sales pitch just as you do for customers. Each job and each employer are different so modify your tone and the accomplishments you choose to highlight for every application.
  • Make a professional yet friendly first impression with a resume template that reflects your sales and management style.
  • Take the ATS screening software into account by sprinkling important keywords and phrases from the job listing throughout your sales manager resume.
Expert tip

The role of ATS software in recruitment

Any sales manager should know that there are certain keywords that will get their clients eyes to light up. In a similar way, the first step in the recruitment process for many big companies is driven by software that looks to make an initial decision as to whether a candidate is suitable for the role. If your resume fits the criteria in terms of the language that it uses and the keywords that are evident, you will pass the test and your resume will be read by a human. If you do not have the requisite amount of keywords, you should really be asking yourself why not?

For the sales manager, analyzing sales documentation and the online presence of your employer is important as you will pick up on the language that they use. If you seek to mirror this language in your resume, you will go a long way to sounding like “one of them.” 

If the job ad uses phrases such as “BANT,” “buying signals,” “land and expand” or “side selling,” you should feel free to write with a bit of inside sales language including using those exact phrases.

Playing the keywords game is part of writing a resume, but do not let it get in the way of sounding like yourself. The most free-flowing part of any resume is the summary. That is where you start to make your case.

Choosing the right resume format for a sales manager

A great sales pitch gets right to the point and so does a great resume for a sales manager. 

A reverse chronological order format helps you get there by placing your most recent achievements first and working back toward the beginning of your career, or at most 10-15 years back. This format applies to your work history and education sections.

If your route to sales has not been a straight line or you are just beginning your career, a hybrid or functional format may better highlight your strengths because they focus on skills over employment history.

Our resume builder includes designs in many styles, each with resume examples for each format. For sales managers, we suggest a modern layout for its clarity, readability, and sleek style.

Include your contact information

No salesperson leaves a meeting without leaving behind a business card containing easy-to-read contact information. The header is your resume’s business card. 

The main goal of the header is to put your phone number and email front and center, but it also serves as a design element. Here is the data to include in your header:

  • Full name and title. List your first and last name and the title “Sales Manager’ unless the job listing names the position differently.
  • Professional email address. Use a clean format like [email protected].
  • Phone number. List a number where you can be readily contacted, with a professional voicemail greeting.
  • Location. List only your city and state. Your street address and zip code are unnecessary. Note 'Willing to Relocate' or ‘WIlling to Travel’ here if applicable.
  • LinkedIn. If your LinkedIn profile is active, relevant, and shows your sales network, include it here.

Don’t include:

  • Date of birth: Not necessary and could potentially lead to age discrimination.
  • Personal details: Marital status, social security number, passport number (even if the job requires international travel), etc.
Do

Wes Turner

Boulder, CO 

(720) 315-8237

[email protected]

Don't

Wes Turner

8790 Sugarbean Lane

Boulder, CO 80302 

(720) 315-8237

[email protected]

Make use of a summary

Everyone wants to hire a superstar sales manager to add some rocket fuel to their bottom line. Your summary has to make it crystal clear that you are the one for them. A sales manager’s summary should leave functional details and personal qualities to one side. 

The one critical consideration for your future employer is what you have achieved (and consequently what you might be able to do for them). While percentages and sales growth fit well in the employment history section, there is nothing more impressive than leading with some really big numbers in the summary to grab their attention. If you are hitting 35% YOY growth targets every year, they may not care how you did it. After an employer reads the sales manager’s resume summary, you want them to be thinking one thing: “Wow. I wonder if they can do that for us?”

While you will likely go into more detail about your projects in the employment history section, the summary is a powerful place to include details about your most successful projects (if they are relevant to the role). Show that you are proud of what you have achieved and don’t hide the numbers. You may not be able to provide the full context, but your future employer will have a starting point for the job interview questioning. Knowing why the numbers matter is the very foundation of sales.

Expert tip

Focus on your industry knowledge

Choose the industry experience that is closest to your future role. There is nothing worse than a Sales Director or MD reading the first few lines of a resume and thinking that your industry or product experience isn’t the right fit (while in actual fact you do have some relevant experience). If you don’t understand the product or service that you are selling, you won’t get very far.

Looking to craft your own sales manager resume summary? For more materials to advise you, please consult our related sales resume examples: sales assistant resume sample, car sales resume sample, sales Associate resume sample, sales resume sample, account executive resume sample, account manager resume sample, or sales representative resume sample.

You can find adaptable sales manager resume example summaries below:

Entry-level adaptable resume summary/profile example

Entry-level sales manager with exceptional communication skills and keen understanding of customer needs. Results-driven and passionate about exceeding targets and building strong client relationships. Proficient in developing strategic sales plans and executing effective sales strategies through analysis of market data.

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Mid-level adaptable resume summary/profile example

Experienced and self-motivated Sales Manager with five years of industry experience overseeing sales figures and new account developments. Bringing forth a proven track record of working collaboratively with sales teams to achieve goals, escalate revenue gains, and advance the sales cycle of the company. A strong leader with the ability to increase sales and develop strategies to retain customers. 

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Senior-level adaptable resume summary/profile example

Dynamic senior sales manager with 10+ years driving revenue growth and leading high-performance sales teams in the technology services industry. Achieved peak performance and sales growth through developing and implementing strategic sales plans and cultivating long-term client relationships. Applying strong leadership skills combined with analysis of market trends and innovating sales strategies leads to maximizing profitability.

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Outline your sales manager work experience: the sales cycle

Different stages of the sales cycle call for different behaviors from the sales manager. Ensure that your employment history paints a full picture. As the nature of sales roles can vary significantly, potential employers want to understand that you can do the basics of the role. 

They need to understand that you have worked in similar environments and have overcome similar challenges. Convince them that selling their product will feel like putting on a familiar pair of slippers. 

Your employment history should cover every aspect of the sales cycle – with your experience spread across your past employers. If possible, pick out aspects of each role that could be related to the job that you are applying for. It is better to expand on relevant experience than include stuff where they think “oh, that is not for us.” A sales manager has to have an affinity for their product or service, so the more the resume is geared towards it, the better.

Your employment history should also show your early adoption of sales techniques and methods. Social media has been a great selling tool for years now, so talk about how you are on the cutting edge of the industry. Every salesperson needs to be an influencer on social media, so that has to form a thread through your recent employment history. 

For example, this item shows adoption of CRM systems:

  • Implemented CRM system to streamline sales processes, track customer interactions, and improve data accuracy, resulting in increased efficiency and productivity.

This one focuses on social media:

  • Post weekly innovative sales techniques and informational pieces on company’s products and services on  LinkedIn

Make sure that your sales manager examples are not only measurable, but give them some context. You have to show your future employer how you have achieved the numbers and tell the story of the obstacles that you faced along the way. Nothing runs smoothly in sales and you have to show how you have been resilient. 

Here is an example:

  • Developed and implemented strategic sales plans to penetrate new markets, resulting in a 30% increase in revenue within the first year after maintaining sales levels during Covid.

It is also important to cover how you worked with stakeholders. You are often not only selling to an external audience – sometimes you need buy-in from your own people in terms of how you go about hitting your sales targets. Showing how you collaborate with others is crucial in any resume, but especially for sales.

These sales manager resume example items show leadership and collaboration with team members and senior executives.

  • Conducted regular sales training sessions to enhance team members' product knowledge, sales techniques, and customer service skills, resulting in improved sales performance and client engagement.
  • Prepared and presented detailed sales reports and forecasts to senior management, providing insights and recommendations for future sales initiatives.
Adaptable resume employment history example

Sales Manager at Winthrop and Lee, Boulder
November 2014 - September 2021

  • Helped to achieve a 25% increase in sales revenue over the course of 1 year.
  • Established sales goals by forecasting annual sales quotas and projecting expected sales volume for existing and new products.
  • Effectively monitored competition and appropriately adjusted costs based on supply and demand.
  • Managed sales employees and counseled employees based on their professional growth and productivity.

 

Sales Manager at Lola & Co, Denver
September 2010 - October 2014

  • Successfully managed a sales team of 10+ people to meet and achieve sales goals.
  • Developed and implemented sales plans to expand customer base and increase customer retention.
  • Presented sales, revenue, and expenses reports to management teams.
  • Researched competition and developed strategies to stand out as a company against competitors.
  • Monitored the performance of sales team members and worked to increase team morale and motivation.
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Include the relevant key skills that make you a great sales manager

There are countless situations in which your sales skills will be required: conferences, meetings, presentations, email correspondence, and social media. Are your skills up to the task in every situation? Describing your modern skillset in your sales manager resume is key to securing the very best roles. 

Some people assume that selling is a simple occupation. Find a buyer, tell them about the product or service, and they can make up their mind whether it is for them. In fact, modern sales managers have an incredibly skill-heavy job with technology and social media transforming the job from how it looked a decade ago. 

Combine hard and soft skills that create the perfect package for each job. Sales jobs may seem soft skills focused, but prospective employers are also looking for hard skills such as sales forecasting, CRM systems (HubSpot, Pipedrive, Salesforce or any others you have experience using), product knowledge or sales process proficiency. 

Sales managers must have great people, or soft skills, as well. Mentoring, leadership, relationship building, negotiation and critical thinking take your sales skills to the next level.

The resume builder suggests pre-written key skills with proficiency ranges you can set. You can also personalize your skills.

Adaptable resume skills example
  • Project Management
  • Business Development Strategies
  • Industry Knowledge
  • Interpersonal Communication
  • Innovative Problem Solving
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A resume for a sales manager should demonstrate skills throughout. Here are work history resume examples infused with both hard and soft skills: 

  • Negotiated a three-year deal with a projected sales uplift of 120%
  • Introduced a social selling process for the sales and marketing team
  • Organized performance of supplier base, achieved cost savings of 13%
  • Influenced internal stakeholders and managed customer service initiatives
  • Developed promotional materials increasing new customer pipeline by 45%
  • Collaborated with production teams on new product development and marketing
  • Grew and mentored the sales team from 8 to 15 people and developed three new team leaders
  • Created analytical dashboard for business visibility of all sales metrics

The job listing should guide your choice of skills and accomplishments to include.

Detail your education & relevant sales manager certifications

While most sales managers possess a bachelor’s degree in sales and marketing, many have taken courses and qualifications in a wide range of subjects. The education section of a sales manager's resume is a listing of any degrees or certifications relevant to the job. 

While a bachelor’s degree in sales and marketing or business qualification is preferred, most sales professionals will have been fully trained in a wide range of selling techniques. Especially if you're moving into a manager's role for the first time, the Certified Professional Sales Leader certification will boost your desireability, and it is advisable to mention a few of the higher profile qualifications such as: 

  • Training and certifications. Courses, workshops, or even webinars that enhance your skills in sales, management or the industry in which you sell.
  • Internships. Whether it be an industry internship, sales, or management experience, list it here.
  • Professional development. Memberships in business or trade associations show that you’re developing knowledge, skills, and contacts.

People with an abundance of sales experience may not have formal qualifications, so their on-the-job education is important to emphasize. In terms of extra qualifications, it is common for sales professionals to attend external training and while it may not be advisable to include every individual training program, offering an insight into the most relevant qualifications for the job in question is a good idea.

Adaptable resume education example

Bachelor of Marketing, Colorado College, Colorado Springs
August 2005 - May 2009

 

High School Diploma, The Vanguard School, Colorado Springs
September 2001 - May 2005

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Pick the right resume layout and design for a sales manager resume

The layout of your sales manager resume shows the hiring manager where you place the emphasis in your career. Make sure that your career successes are able to shine through and that your layout is memorable without getting too flashy.

A sales manager resume is not about cramming as much text into a two-page document as possible. You could come up with lots of content to fill two pages at a tiny font size, but your message would be utterly lost. Design your resume so that it comes across as being visually clean and easy to read. You shouldn’t make the reader guess as to what is important and what is simply filler. 

Keep it simple. Choose legible fonts and no or limited color. When you are choosing a resume template, look for clean lines and standout contact information. In our sales manager resume example, we chose the Dublin template. Personalize with the color that speaks to you (or matches the company logo).

Sales manager job market and outlook 

A great salesperson should never have a hard time finding a job, but what you sell is as important as how you sell. Knowledge in a growth industry such as healthcare  will make find a good job that pays well a lot smoother. 

Statistical insight
  • The market is expected to stay relatively stable, with 4% growth projected over the next decade.
  • An increase of about 43,200 is expected, mostly from attrition.
  • LinkedIn lists more than 5,000 open sales manager positions.

What type of salary you can expect in sales management

Median salary for a sales manager is $82,488, with a typical range from $40,930-$$166,349. Rainmaker lists the following as the highest-paying sales jobs (median income in parentheses):

  1. Tech sales engineer ($108,530)
  2. Wholesale and manufacturing ($97,710)
  3. Securities, commodities and financial services ($67,480)

Key takeaways for building a sales manager resume

A dynamic sales manager resume is your pitch for employment. Summarize  with emotive language and impactful examples. You will be the public face of your product, so leave a lasting impression and demonstrate awareness of the employer’s product by sharing your relevant experience. Communicate your mix of hard and soft skills with specific achievements in context. When designing, ensure that the layout of your resume is a blend of practicality and creativity. 

Take advantage of online resume builder to make your life easier and the job application process faster!

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