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Modern-day sales management is a lost art and discipline says Rob Macpherson

The art of effective sales management is rapidly being lost as a discipline with many modern-day sales managers unable to understand that it’s an action role, not a position said Rob Macpherson on returning to Australia after stellar sales management success – the last two decades in Asia.


Commenting further Rob Macpherson said far too many sales managers are unable to relate to the teams they manage as they fail to invest the time needed to understand each member as individuals with unique needs and very personal aspirations.


The more intimately and personally a sales manager understands the individuals within the team – the more appreciative, productive and successful they will be affirmed Rob Macpherson.


Furthermore, Rob is very passionate about the power of individuals and corporations to positively change the lives of other people.  His motto has always been that… “Life is short and it’s sad when people die with their dreams unrealised”.


An absolute imperative and key role as a sales manager is to assist the individuals within the team to maximise their potential and fulfill their dreams and aspirations.


Rob is a firm believer in giving back to the community – especially assisting and providing guidance to the next generation.  He has been invited to deliver presentations to students and school communities by Learning Curve Psychology (LCP), a family-centred paediatric psychology practice, located in Beaconsfield.  


Michelle Cameron, LCP Director & Principal Psychologist said she was confident Rob’s life story of experiences, challenges and successes will make a positive difference to the young people and families that attend his presentations.


Rob joined the life assurance industry in 1973 and has worked as an agent, Unit Manager, State Sales Manager NSW and his Asia experience includes Assistant Vice President Hong Kong and Chief Agency Officer in China, Indonesia, Philippines, Vietnam, Hong Kong, Russia, Thailand, and most recently in Cambodia.  A total of 10 countries including England and Australia.


As Head of Sales and Agency, Rob has overseen teams ranging from 2,000 to 50,000 with career spectacular results he’s delivered for start-up and established organisations in Asia.


Far too many sales managers manage and lead from behind a desk and in doing so fail to create the environment, trust and respect of the team members said Rob Macpherson.  


“Many don’t know how to sell and close a sale, so they avoid joint field work at all costs to save personal embarrassment and their inability to convey skills and expertise to the team”. 


“Credibility is paramount!”


Rob Macpherson continued, “Many will say interpersonal sales skills are obsolete in the modern digital / social media era.  This is far from the truth, especially for those ‘big ticket’ items such as real estate, motor vehicles, marine, construction / development, financial services, etc. 


“For these, the consumer demands the reassurance of a human being in order to buy the product or service”.


Rob affirms that the sales manager has six key functions to perform –


1.  Recruit – quality individuals that are a cultural fit within the sales team and organisation.


2.  Train – this is a two-dimensional process that can’t be performed at a distance.  The sales manager must be able to train in the office and the field demonstrating how ‘it’s done’ in real life situations. 


3.  Control – the sales manager must be able to control activities of the individuals that comprise the team.


4.  Organise events – such as conferences, functions, speakers, etc. and needs to be undertaken with great care.


5.  Sales climate – the sales manager is responsible for the ‘climate’ within the team with appropriate recognition, rewards and acknowledgement – including discipline if needed.


6.  Clear goals & plans – that are easily and readily able to be communicated and understood by the sales team.


Sales managers that do these six functions diligently will be rewarded with successful and winning sales teams concluded Rob Macpherson.




Issued by Rob Macpherson

& Learning Curve Psychology                 www.learningcurvepsych.com.au 


Media Enquiries:       Mr Joe Perri, Joe Perri & Associates

                                    Mob: +61 412 112 545  Email: jperri@joeperri.com.au


About Rob Macpherson    


Rob was born in London and emigrated to Australia aged 18 in 1969 (alone) to seek his fame and fortune.  He joined the life assurance industry in 1973 and has worked as an agent, Unit Manager, Regional State Sales manager NSW. 


Over the course of his career, Rob has lived and worked in 10 countries and his Asia experience includes Chief Agency Officer in China, Indonesia, Philippines, Vietnam, Hong Kong, Russia, Thailand, and most recently Cambodia.


As head of agency he has overseen sales forces ranging from 2,000 to 50,000. 


Following below is a brief summary of his career over the past two decades


MANULIFE ASIA     2012 – 2018                                     

Established the Manulife operation in Cambodia and was then responsible for sales recruitment, training and development of the agency force.                                         



Chief Agency Officer

Started up the new company and the operation was acknowledged as best start-up in Vietnamese insurance company ever exceeding sales target in excess of 300%.


Assistant Vice President Hong Kong

Providing strategic advice and guidance in planning and implementing sales and agency sales.



National Sales Manager                          

Managed the agency sales force that consisted of over 6000 agents and sales managers, located in 56 offices nationally.


Over 3 years took market share from 1.5% to 8.2% and out-performed the industry.  New premium income increased 63% (2002 /2003), 6.5% (2004/2003),22% (2005/2004), in a market that has had negative new business growth in each of the above years.


As at June 2006 sales were up 17% (YOY), with the market down a collective 13% over the same period.


CHINA LIFE CMG     2001 – 2003

Chief Marketing Officer                                       

Responsibilities for Sales and Marketing including strategies in Shanghai China, recruiting/developing Sales Managers, sales training, etc



Regional Sales & Marketing Director, Southeast Asia            


COLONIAL  (CMG)China Life     1998 – 1999

Consultant International Sales and Marketing