Monday, February 4, 2008

Moving From Account Management to Growth Management

Because today’s environment is stewarded in large part by client side procurement management, companies require client solutions teams that can act among other things as a business growth units. This should be a team of high level, senior executives who, over time and increased knowledge of a client’s business can carry new strategies to further benefit the client’s business and increase their organization’s sales. It is becoming increasingly important for growth directors to consider a client management structure that is tied to the daily workings of each major account. Most sales forces function in a somewhat “siloed” manner, generally seeking business from new clients, rather than focusing on existing ones. Growth management teams must be able to look at the big picture or the “integrated strategic picture” for its existing business base.

Growth Management Objectives
  • Develop client relationships at the highest levels to enable your organization to have access to and understand client needs
  • Provide neutral, integrated solutions focused on meeting identified client needs
  • Create platforms to evidence your company’s qualifications and competencies in delivering reliable solutions on time and to specification
  • The business proposition of a growth management team is to create better ways to build revenue…to transact client relationships in an efficient manner to maximize profitability.

This approach requires two primary business components. First, a day-to-day operations and service experience enabling team directors to conceptualize how a strategy for incremental business can work. And secondly, salesmanship; the ability to ascertain the relevant information required to bundle business services into larger responses and solutions. These two components combine the most important aspects of a traditional account director and specialty strategic business development or growth director. Importantly, when viewed in this way, the account team can provide a familiar operating logistic to the client…again, keeping a “same page mentality” for the account management team to accomplish its tasks.

Creating a Client Centric Approach The Account Team must view itself as a Client Management Solutions Group, working with the client and internally to articulate:
• What goals must be served by whatever action is taken
• Which goals have the highest priority
• What solutions groups, individually and collectively, will achieve the desired goals
• Which choices seem best for the client

The Big Question Will the client understand the “payoff” from our actions?

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