Import, Craft, Specialty Sales Manager

Lakeshore Beverage


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Lakeshore Beverage is seeking an Import, Craft & Specialty (ICS) Sales Manager. This ICS Sales Manager is the primary point of contact and advocate for assigned suppliers such as Founder's, Bell's, Goose Island, and Diageo.  We are dedicated to telling each brewer’s story and to cultivating access to their beers in unique and compelling ways. This position is responsible for executing the annual business plan, sales and distribution goals, and the retail activation through Brand Managers. This is a full-time regular position offering excellent benefits, including medical, dental, and 401(k) plans, paid vacation and personal leave, plus more.

The ICS Sales Manager is accountable for all supplier P&L statements to ensure both Lakeshore Beverage divisions and supplier goals are achieved for sales volume, distribution, profit, and revenue. They will also ensure that budgets and annual business plans are managed and maximized to reach our collective goals. The ICS Manager will train Lakeshore Beverage sales staff on brand attributes and selling techniques, oversee the sales performance, distribution, and quality of all assigned brand products and develop and clearly communicate brand-specific sales activities and incentive programs for the Sales Department. This person is responsible for planning the effective use of marketing resources to maximize the development and revenue of suppliers, integrating and enhancing assigned supplier’s marketing programs, and keeping abreast of pertinent financial and sales results.

Principal Accountabilities:

  • Develop and clearly communicate effective Business Plans for all assigned suppliers with assistance from the Corporate Director of Import Craft and Specialties, , Director of Sales & Marketing, Marketing Manager and Corporate Director of Import Craft and Specialties to brand managers, sales managers and sales force.
  • Develop and clearly communicate a Beer knowledge-training program and implement to all Lakeshore Beverage employees on a weekly and monthly basis.
  • Develop and clearly communicate direction and goals for assigned supplier’s products in concert with company brand/package objectives.
  • Manage POS orders to meet brand and market needs while following Lakeshore Beverage POS budget plan. Monitor POS timing and use at retail to insure assigned supplier and Lakeshore Beverage budgets are used to maximum effectiveness.
  • Proactively work with assigned Supplier representatives and Brand Managers to design, implement, track, and evaluate incentives.
  • Work with assigned Suppliers and Lakeshore Sales force at retail to gain targeted distribution, and to evaluate the execution of programs throughout the year to ensure execution goals are met.
  • Ensure brand-specific sales and product knowledge training for the sales department is executed by Brand Managers. Make brand presentations to sales force at sales meetings.
  • Strategically analyze pricing of assigned brands to enhance long-term brand equities, as well as the profitability of Lakeshore and our retail partners. Analyze potential margin changes due to various supplier pricing scenarios including quantity discounts.
  • Assist Director of Sales and Marketing, Marketing Manager, General Sales Managers, Delivery Manager, and Sales Representatives are achieving brand goals and objectives.

Identify and prioritize retail opportunities based on account potential by channel, segment, and consumer demographics.

  • Analyze and evaluate sales, distribution, and retail execution data and communicate the results to the appropriate company personnel and/or supplier representatives.
  • Develop and clearly communicate new product launch plans with assigned supplier reps; assist the Sr. Inventory/Forecasting Manager in forecasting new and existing product volume.
  • Identify and monitor assigned SKU’s, taking appropriate action to ensure all possible brands and packages are meeting distribution goals. Also take action to address slow moving packages and implement an appropriate exit strategy.
  • Develop and maintain a close working relationship with key retailers in all segments and channels.
  • Communicates assigned supplier’s Quality Assurance Standards to all Lakeshore personnel.
  • Understands and complies with all local, state and federal regulations along with all Lakeshore policies and procedures.
  • Completes reporting requirements and special assignments at the request of the Director of Sales & Marketing and Corporate Director of Import Craft and Specialties.
  • Ensures compliance with ILCC and all company policies, practices, procedures and controls.

Ideal candidate possess:

  • Bachelor’s degree. Preferably in sales or marketing.
  • 5-7 years progressive sales and management experience.
  • Must have the proven ability to build and nurture relationships with retailers.
  • Must demonstrate sales planning, forecasting, and sales execution experience
  • Proficient in Microsoft Excel and PowerPoint software.
  • Must show proven ability to build and maintain strong, effective relationships with customers and functional groups.
  • Must show aptitude to effectively interpret and use multiple information sources to develop customer-specific tactical plans and options.
  • Familiar with a variety of the field's concepts, practices, and procedures.
  • Relies on extensive experience and judgment to plan and accomplish goals.

Critical Performance Competencies:

  • Demonstrates different influence styles as appropriate to situation while maintaining positive relationships
  • Builds and maintains trusting relationships with associates and customers
  • Effectively transfers thoughts and expresses ideas using speech, and listening skills to influences others and gain support
  • Adjust to new, different, or changing requirements
  • Listens with objectivity and checks for understanding
  • Persists despite obstacles and opposition or setbacks
  • Competitive, high achiever
  • Holds self-accountable for results
  • Conveys a sense of urgency and drives issues to closure

Value Competencies:

  • Displays passion for & responsibility to the customer
  • Displays leadership through innovation in everything you do
  • Displays a passion for what you do and a drive to improve
  • Displays a relentless commitment to win
  • Displays personal & corporate integrity

Position reports to: Corporate Director of Import, Craft and Specialties and Director of Sales

Employment with Lakeshore Beverage can lead to opportunities for advancement—in addition to advancement opportunities that may occur in Chicago, Hand Family Companies operates ten other facilities throughout Illinois, Tennessee, and Kentucky. We’re a growing Company, and if that’s what you are seeking, we might be right for you!

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