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Passing the Torch

You've found the right person to replace you. But could things heat up when you Introduce that person to your sales team?

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This story appears in the November 2003 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

For your business to thrive, you may need to relinquish thereins of sales force management to new blood. But turning overcontrol of the team you've nurtured for years can be a thornyexercise. To extricate yourself from your sales role gracefully andeffectively, follow these solid steps to hire and introduce yourreplacement:

  • Identify the skills youseek. Be careful here-it's the nature of many amanager to look for a replacement who mirrors his or her ownstrengths. But bringing in fresh talent is a fine occasion tocomplement your talents rather than hiring a clone. "Findsomeone who'll add a level of leadership to your company,"encourages Patricia Gardner, CEO of Maximum SalesInc., a sales executive management consulting and trainingcompany in Skippack, Pennsylvania.

Also, don't be afraid to hire a manager who may one dayeclipse your management prowess. Says Gardner, "The best CEOsin the world aren't afraid to be surrounded by greater talentthan their own."

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