International Sales Manager: Job Description & Requirements

International sales managers direct a company's sales division by establishing goals and advising representatives on how to improve sales and performance around the globe. Managers contact distributors and analyze data to evaluate sales statistics and customer satisfaction.

Career Definition for International Sales Managers

International sales managers train, direct, and supervise a sales staff. International sales managers coordinate the operations of the sales department across the globe by establishing goals and monitoring the volume of sales from staff members. They must review progress reports, which will help them determine sales potential, customer needs, and the pricing of products or services. A sales staff will be assigned territories or geographic regions by an international sales manager and managers will constantly monitor and evaluate their progress.

Education Bachelor's in business administration or related field
Job Duties Coordinate sales departments, determine sales potential and customer needs
Median Salary (2018) $124,220 (all sales managers)
Job Growth (2016-2026) 7% (all sales managers)

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Education Required

International sales managers are required to graduate with at least bachelor's degree in business administration or a related major. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports that students will take classes in finance, accounting, business, law, management, economics, international business, and statistics. Many individuals that want a career as an international sales manager will enroll in foreign language classes, which will enable them to communicate and network with companies and businesses around the world.

Skills Required

Communication is vital for anyone working in an international sales management position. Having foreign language skills can open up doors in the field and may be required for some positions. As technology advances, computer skills are essential and are only going to become increasingly important. International sales managers need to have good judgment and an ability to develop a rapport with clients and other salespeople. Persons in international sales must be able to handle stress and have the flexibility to travel to different countries as needed.

Economic and Career Outlook

According to the BLS, opportunities for sales managers, including those in international sales, are expected to grow at a fast-as-average pace of 7% from 2016 to 2026. May 2018 figures from the BLS showed that the median annual salary for a sales manager was $124,220.

Alternate Career Options

Similar career options in this field include:

Advertising, Promotions, and Marketing Manager

After earning bachelor's degrees and obtaining work experience in marketing, promotions, or advertising, these managers work with financial staff, sales agents, and art directors to plan promotional sales programs that generate interest in targeted services and products. Promotions managers also are involved with increasing sales by using purchasing incentives, and marketing managers estimate product and service demand and work on pricing strategies.

Marketing managers could expect employment growth of 10% from 2016 through 2026, the BLS said, while the outlook for advertising and promotions managers was not as strong, with a rise of 5% projected. According to that same source, marketing managers earned an annual median salary of $134,290 in 2018, while advertising and promotions managers took home $117,130.


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