Sales development is the process of refining leads into customers. The director of sales development is in charge of coordinating teams to prepare leads and warm them up for purchase decisions. Their ultimate goal is to convert marketing qualified leads (MQL) into sales qualified leads (SQL)1

Marketing qualified leads are prospects that need nurturing to become customers, whereas sales qualified leads are ready to buy. In the absence of sales development, indecisive MQLs are handed on to account executives, which often results in low sales.

Companies that struggle to fill their funnels with qualified leads will likely find it difficult to generate revenue. 

Why is Sales Development Important?

In reality, not all prospects from lead generation and inbound marketing2 are ready to make a purchase. Without a sales development process in place, your company risks facing lengthier sales cycles and losing leads.

It is a typical practice to delegate sales development to sales or marketing divisions, but only a well-defined sales development team will accelerate results and enhance revenue creation.

Sales development is vital since it generates a growing number of qualified prospects and efficiently nurtures them for a purchase. The director of sales development is responsible for developing and implementing strategies to ensure a successful process.

Roles and Responsibilities of a Director of Sales Development

Sales development directors use industry knowledge, prospecting teams, cold emails, and CRM platforms to generate high-quality leads for salespeople to close. This is a low-level executive position that reports to the CEO or the Vice President of Sales, depending on the organizational structure.

The duties of a sales development director are to

  • Lead all sales development activities;
  • Strategically fill the pipeline with qualified leads;
  • Set sales qualified lead (SQL) quotas for teams;
  • Conduct performance evaluations using sales development metrics;
  • Collaborate with sales development managers to exceed targets;
  • Maximize new business development opportunities;
  • Supervise the hiring and teambuilding efforts of SDMs;
  • Iterate sales techniques for improvements;
  • Periodically report sales development activities to management.

Sales Development Director vs Sales Development Manager

The Companies Expert3 describes a sales manager’s job as organizing, influencing, and coordinating others while reporting to the director. People confuse these positions because the sales development manager combines both responsibilities in most organizations. 

The differences between these roles are shown below.

Features Director of Sales DevelopmentSales Development Manager
Direct reportsSales development managersSales development representatives
Job descriptionCreates company-wide sales strategiesLead SDRs to implement sales strategies

Salary for Director of Sales

Directors of sales earn an average of $123,543 per year, according to data from Indeed, Payscale, Glassdoor, and Bonuses, commissions, paid time off, and healthcare insurance total approximately $94,451 yearly.4

sales development director job description 2023

Skills to Look for in Directors of Sales Development

To be successful in this executive position, candidates must have experience in the field and a skill set that includes: 

  • CRM: The best sales directors understand the tools, tactics, and processes for maintaining customer data for sales.
  • Recruitment: A sales director must have human resource abilities to hire and manage the top talents in their business. The directors supervise recruitment and select the best candidates for their teams.
  • Negotiation: Sales directors negotiate with high-value clients and manage complex sales cycles. The ideal applicant can reach agreements with clients and close deals that benefit both parties.
  • Leadership: Directors must be exceptional leaders. They are responsible for coordinating the sales process and should motivate their staff to deliver effective results. 
  • Communication: Communication is the bedrock of sales development. Sales directors employ active listening, empathy, and nonverbal clues to engage clients, managers, and SDRs.
  • Critical thinking: The sales environment can be fast-paced with little margin for slip-ups. The best candidate for this role must be a critical thinker who can proffer solutions to tricky situations. 
  • Data analysis: The most effective salespeople use analytics to find and qualify leads. A director of sales creates strategies and targets with data-driven insights and metrics. 
  • Resource management: Companies seek sales leaders who can increase revenue while working with minimal resources. A sales director should be able to deliver consistent results with the budget, tools, and salespeople under his supervision. 

Director of Sales Job Description Template 

We are searching for a sales development director to oversee the implementation of our international sales strategy. The ideal candidate will coordinate our group of diverse sales managers and create tactics to grow our annual revenue.

You will work collaboratively with the marketing department to build our pipeline with high-quality inbound prospects, develop effective outbound prospecting campaigns, supervise recruitment, and generate monthly sales reports for executive review.

With our company, you have the opportunity to grow your career while working in a diverse, inclusive, fast-paced environment. We’d love to hear from you if you are:

  • A sales development representative, manager, or director with over 5 years of experience managing teams.
  • A bachelor’s or higher degree holder in sales, marketing, business, or a similar discipline.
  • An exceptional leader with a knack for identifying and developing top-tier sales talent.
  • A brilliant communicator with strong presentation skills.
  • Highly analytical and ready to make data-driven decisions.
  • Capable of working independently and developing indigenous solutions.
  • Motivated, driven, and goal-oriented.

Bottom Line

If your company is having difficulty closing transactions, you may need to establish a sales development process led by a director. These experts ensure that all leads in your pipeline are qualified and ready to buy.

Directors of sales development increase revenue through their skills, but hiring them might be expensive. Reliable sales agencies provide specialized sales development solutions at a lower cost.

These agencies bring years of experience, industry knowledge, and proven methods to your sales process, ramping up your revenue and propelling your business.