What Does a Business Development Manager Do? (+ Job Description, Skills, and Examples)

Izabelle Hundrev
Izabelle Hundrev  |  April 10, 2019

It’s pretty much a given that you can’t run a successful team without strong leadership.

A good manager can make all the difference between a team hitting or missing their sales targets. Running a fast-growing sales organization starts with business development, so it’s incredibly important to make sure the team at the front line of your sales process is managed effectively.

That being said, the title is pretty ambiguous. You may ask yourself, what does a BDR manager do?

If you're looking to pursue a business development career path, you'll need answers. To help, we gathered everything you need to know about the general responsibilities a business development manager has, complete with a job description template and real-life examples for reference.

What does a business development manager do?

Business development is at the forefront of the sales process. The BDR team serves the crucial functions of qualifying inbound leads, prospecting through existing accounts and generating pipeline. At most companies, a team of business development representatives work as individual contributors and are led by a BDR manager or director. Whichever title it is, the position will serve the same general purpose: to manage the BDR team and be responsible for hitting overall team goals.

Business development manager responsibilities

In short, a business development manager is responsible for leading a team of business development representatives. That may seem pretty straightforward, but there are a lot of different duties that fall under that umbrella. In addition to managing a team, they are also responsible for overseeing sales pipeline growth. The person who fills this role should be carefully vetted as they will have a lot of high-pressure responsibilities and be held accountable for each individual team member’s success.

Below you’ll find additional responsibilities BDR managers are expected to fulfill:

  • Coach and develop business development representatives to meet and exceed individual goals
  • Ensure that sales qualified leads (SQLs) are converting to opportunities and supporting sales pipeline growth
  • Identify opportunities for improvement across sales operations and make recommendations to executive leadership for streamlining processes

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Business development manager skills

A BDR manager needs to be multifaceted since their work impacts multiple teams in different ways. This position is mostly focused on sales, but also touches on marketing and sales operations. This person needs to be able to work cross-functionally, while also feeling comfortable being in charge of their own team. For this reason, the desired skill set is pretty specific.

The ideal candidate will have a variety of strong managerial skills, such as:

  • Exceptional verbal and written communication
  • The ability to manage a team
  • Strong presentation and delivery
  • Tech-savvy
  • Time management and organization

Now that we’ve covered the basics, it’s time to repurpose this short, bulleted list into a formal job description. Keep in mind that the responsibilities of a BDR manager will vary greatly based on your organization and the type of needs your team has. These are meant to act as a general guideline, but feel free to customize the job description to tailor your company’s specific needs.

For the purpose of this template, I used a fictional company: Windy City Software.

Tip: Looking for ways to keep your sales team motivated? Learn more here!

Business development manager job description

Title: Business Development Manager, full-time

Location: Chicago, IL

About Windy City Software
Since 2006, Windy City Software has been a leading global provider of accounting software for small businesses. We aim to eliminate the headaches associated with invoicing, payment processing and everything else that comes with running the finances of a small shop. Our mission is to make easy-to-use accounting software available and affordable to everyone.

About the role
Windy City Software is looking for a dedicated and experienced Business Development Manager to lead all day-to-day operations of the business development branch within our sales organization.

Responsibilities

  • Lead a team of quota-carrying business development representatives (BDRs) ensuring they meet personal and team monthly, quarterly and annual goals
  • Provide guidance and instruction on a day-to-day basis to ensure team members understand and execute their responsibilities
  • Hold weekly one-on-one meetings with team members to evaluate progress and discuss professional development
  • Oversee all aspects of sales pipeline growth and forecast potential blockers
  • Empower team members to work hard and foster a culture of inclusivity and collaboration

Requirements

  • Bachelor’s degree in business or related field
  • 3-5 years of experience in sales or business development in a B2B environment
  • 1-2 years of experience in a team lead or management role
  • Ability to track and forecast sales pipeline and revenue growth
  • Exceptional time management and organization skills
  • Ability to work in a fast-paced, collaborative environment
  • Experience using CRM software to track sales activities

Business development manager job description examples

For insight into how real companies are structuring and customizing their BDR manager job descriptions, see the examples below.

Cavendish Farms example

Title: Business Development Manager, full-time

Location: Chicago, IL

About Cavendish Farms
Cavendish Farms is a Global leading producer of frozen food products for Foodservice and Retail markets. The company has state-of-the-art potato processing plants in Canada in Prince Edward Island, Lethbridge, Alberta, and Jamestown, North Dakota, and an appetizer plant in Wheatley, Ontario.

About the role
The candidate will be the Cavendish subject matter expert that will work with our Broker Partners to support the operator adoption of our product platform. In this role, the Business Development Manager will help build operator business as well as train and develop our Broker partners to support a best in class operator sales model.

Qualifications:

• Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration, Marketing, Communications or a related field

• 3+ years of experience in food service sales with a manufacturer, broker sales, distributor background, or relevant sales experience

• Ability to understand data and identify insights and incorporate into selling strategies and key initiatives

• Excellent communication, analytical, problem solving, negotiation and persuasion skills and work well within a high performance team environment

• Must be able to demonstrate effective time management skills and the ability to work independently with minimal day-to-day supervision, while delivering on-target result

Key Responsibilities:

• Plan operator market activity with the key Broker reps in strategic markets

• Educate and develop brokers on the “Cavendish Way” to sell solutions to operators

• Report weekly on market intelligence gained, sales activity and success

• Participate in key Broker and Distributor training meetings

• Participate in key Broker Reviews to discuss operator pipeline, opportunities to improve process and close rates.

 business development manager job description tip

Gan Integrity example

Title: Business Development Manager, full-time

Location: New York, New York

About the role
GAN Integrity is seeking an all-star Business Development Manager to lead a team of BDRs who position the products to the various markets we serve and deliver highly qualified leads to our outside sales team. The BDR Manager will be responsible for hiring, onboarding, ongoing training and ensuring the BDR team is successful. This role collaborates closely with sales and marketing to maximize the creation of highly qualified sales opportunities.

What you'll do

  • Develop best practice operating strategies and provide direction for the business development team, help to hire, onboard, train and manage BDRs
  • Motivate BDRs to meet and exceed goals through coaching and ongoing training
  • Enhance processes to achieve lead generation goals, report on metrics, and obtain KPIs

What we're looking for

  • 1-3 years of BDR experience (preferably in the SaaS industry)
  • Previous management experience
  • The ability and desire to work in a challenging environment - you’re competitive and like to get the job done
  • Passion for prospecting and sales best practices
  • Experience with marketing automation
  • Positive and energetic phone skills, excellent listening skills and strong writing skills

Final thoughts

As you can see, a business development manager’s responsibilities will shift across different industries but that doesn’t mean their role within a company is any less important. Take the time to hone in on the skills and attributes that will make a candidate the best fit to lead a BDR team at your company – it'll pay off. 

Looking for more related sales and business development content? Learn which 10 sales skills are essential for success as a BDR.

Izabelle Hundrev
Author

Izabelle Hundrev

Izabelle is a Content Marketing Associate who joined G2 Crowd in April 2018. After earning a degree in Journalism from the University of Missouri, Izabelle moved back to her hometown of Chicago in pursuit of a career and deep dish pizza. Outside of work, she is passionate about all things pop culture, food, and travel.