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Career Overview: Account Manager

Career Overview: Account Manager

What They Do

Individuals who work as account managers are responsible for developing long-term relationships with clients and customers as well as play a key communication role in relations with business executives and stakeholders. Account management positions often deal directly with customers and are on the front lines of contact concerning matters specific to them. These individuals must also develop their relationships with stakeholders and executive sponsors in order to remain aware of and true to the mission of a business.

 

The ability to analyze and predict trends in consumer behavior and analyze important account metrics is key to success in the account management department. The account management team focuses on maintaining relationships with clients while generating new sales opportunities. Conflict resolution can be a daily task of an account manager, as well as working under pressure to meet deadlines and sales quotas.

Career Growth

Account managers can work in a variety of different settings. Consulting firms, service providers and public relations agencies all require an account management department to liaise with clients. The rate of job growth for positions in the account management field varies by industry. However, because there is a trend in personalized business communication, the role of this department is becoming more important, and therefore, job growth is expected.

 

An account coordinator is an entry-level position in the account management department. Many new hires begin as account coordinators who are responsible for administrative support for the rest of the account management team. Account executives, however, work directly with clients and are responsible for the daily management of their accounts.

Salary Potential

The salary of an account management position depends on the industry and the size of the organization for which a person works. The Bureau of Labor Statistics doesn’t have specific data regarding account management. However, sales managers are reported to make a median annual salary of around $105,000.

Education Required

Generally, an individual pursuing a career in the account management field should have earned at least a bachelor’s degree. Prospective candidates for these kinds of positions often have earned a degree in a field related to business, including organizational leadership, business administration, marketing or management. However, it should be noted that an individual’s education should be tailored to the kind of field or industry in which he or she wishes to work. A person planning to pursue a career as an account manager at a tech company, for example, should take courses in information technology and computer science so that he or she may best understand what they are selling.

 

Communication is perhaps the most important skill an account management employee can have. The ability to listen actively, negotiate well and present facts clearly are paramount to success. The ability to persuade potential and current customers and clients to buy products or services offered is at the heart of this kind of position. This is best achieved by crafting and improving credibility with clients, colleagues and executives at the C-level of an organization.