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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?

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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