You'll be responsible for the overseeing of client accounts. You'll basically be the interface between your firm's customer services and sales departments. This will involve massaging a company's existing relationships with clients to extend the relationship – as well as touting for new business. You'll work closely with clients to identify how best they can be served by your company.
Who can I work for?
Corporate companies, financial services, retail chains, manufacturers, universities, local authorities and small businesses – any field which has a service or product to sell to clients – will all find a home for account managers.
Where and when can I work?
Expect to travel domestically and/or internationally, dependent on your client base. You'll do the basic office hours, except during busy periods. And you may be required to spend periods away from home on such things as business launches, networking events, trade fairs, conferences and exhibitions.
What can I earn?
Incredibly variable – £18,000-£70,000. This will be dependent on your experience and the size and nature of the firm you're working for. But, on average, you should expect between £24,000-£34,000.
What are the benefits?
You can normally earn commission if you hit sales targets – since sales are a vital part of your role.
Are there chances of promotion?
The roles of account director, brand director or marketing manager all beckon – as the facets needed in account management are very transferable.
What will I be responsible for?
+ Selling products and new campaigns
+ Giving presentations
+ Identifying potential new clients and business opportunities and generating ways to attract new clients
+ Liaising with clients in order to identify their needs and handling their requests
+ Ensuring that clients pay on time
+ Communicating client requirements to other staff
+ Maintaining a great knowledge of clients and their business strategies
+ Acting as the first point of contact for company clients
+ Setting up and attending meetings
+ General admin duties
What qualifications do I need?
You'll need a good first degree which is usually business or market-related. Being well-versed in at least one foreign language will be a plus as many companies have international clients.
Do I need any experience?
Because this profession is very competitive, it would benefit you to get an internship with a sales, communications or marketing department to develop useful contacts and skills which will be useful for this role. A plus would be if you could show experience of customer-facing roles, meeting deadlines and handling finances.
What attributes are needed?
An ability to calmly swat away stress like you would a fly. You'll be able to meet deadlines and clients. A 'degree in diplomacy'. Great interpersonnel skills – an ability to act as a bridge between your firm and your client. Politeness. Superb communication and negotiating skills. Flexibility but assertiveness. Good IT and budgeting skills. The ability to plan and multi-skill.