Head of Key Account Management
The Head of Key Account Management leads and oversees activities of the entire key account management department. He expands and maintains relationships with strategically important and large consumers. Assigned to the highest-value key consumers, the Head of Key Account Management is responsible for assigned strategic account targets and sales quota.
The Head of Key Account Management represents the whole spectrum of the business’s products and services to the assigned consumers. He also leads key account planning and ensures that all assigned consumer accounts within the department are catered for and that their needs and expectations are met by the business.
Objectives and Responsibilities of the Head of Key Account Management
Leadership/Supervisory Role: The first and most prominent role of the Head of Key Account Management is his leadership over the key account department. The Head of Key Account Management leads the department through the implementation of a consumer based mode of operation. The Head of Key Account Management deals in the achievement of excellence and insight in order to surpass consumer expectations. In this position, the Head of Key Account Management proactively leads the business’s strategic account planning processes and develops performance objectives, sales targets, and critical milestones for weekly/monthly/annual periods.
The Head of Key Account Management leads the department in assessing, clarifying, and validating consumer needs on a regular basis. The Head of Key Account Management also develops solutions that best address consumer needs while simultaneously coordinating the involvement of the necessary business personnel inclusive of support, service, and resource management in order to meet key account performance objectives and the consumers’ expectations.
The Head of Key Account Management is accountable for the achievement of the department’s assigned targets for profitable sales volume and achievement of the business’s overall objectives. He also formulates the departmental vision and values and oversees their adoption through the department, hence, forming the department’s working culture.
In his leadership position, the Head of Key Account Management plays a mentorship role to key personnel in the account management department, assisting in the execution of duties where necessary, constantly honing their skills, ensuring their constant professional improvement, and essentially readying them to occupy his position in the future.
Strategy: The Head of Key Account Management is also tasked with playing the lead strategic role in the account management department. In this capacity, the Head of Key Account Management drives and develops account specific growth strategies and approaches. The Head of Key Account Management strives to establish industry leading initiatives that influence the position of the business in the industry, solidifying its position as a market leader. Here, the Head of Key Account Management also establishes revenue goals and strategies that advance the accounts’ performance and enables the achievement of the department’s as well as the business’s financial goals.
Relationship Management: The Head of Key Account Management is also tasked with building strong and long-lasting relationships with consumers through the creation of long term planning and understanding. This also done through the establishment of a solid understanding of the competitive market in order to realize how best to acquire and retain high-value consumers. The Head of Key Account Management also develops industry leading relationships with external key account contacts in order to ensure that the business receives constant leads on potential key clients.
Additionally, the Head of Key Account Management develops and maintains healthy relationships with senior managers for all key accounts in order to guarantee their smooth execution. In this position, he engages in key account events, seminars, and plays an active role in industry movements where he gathers information that keeps the business at par or even ahead of competition and up to date with the latest best practices in account management.
Collaboration: The role of the Head of Key Account Management is also a highly collaborative one, where he works to create cross-functional engagements and understandings with necessary departments, for example, the marketing departments in an attempt to align goals and approaches that facilitate smooth achievement of key account objectives. In this position, the Head of Key Account Management also works with the finance department in determining financial requirements for the department and developing the department’s internal budgetary allocation.
The Head of Key Account Management also works closely with the HR department in establishing the recruitment criteria for the account management department in order to ensure efficient execution of duties and overall performance at all levels of the department. In this capacity, the Head of Key Account Management also works closely with senior sales management, that is, the Director of Sales, the Chief Sales Officer, and key stakeholders in the establishment of departmental strategies, goals, and targets.
Analytics: The Head of Account Management plays an analytical role where he conducts research and gathers data on the consumers, the market, and competitive environment in order to identify key improvement areas in account maintenance and management. The Head of Key Account Management is tasked with developing and implementing consumer growth plans, measurement, performance benchmarking, troubleshooting performance gaps, formulating and nurturing outstanding initiatives.
In this capacity, the Head of Key Account Management gathers data and information both from his own initiatives and from junior key account management compiling it, analyzing it, and creating formal reports and presentations that will be used collaboratively with senior key account management in the formulation of decisions and strategies. The Head of Key Account Management also measures the department’s performance, weighing it against the business’s targets and KPIs, which also enables the identification of areas of improvement and avails crucial information for strategic development of the business.
Other Duties: The Head of Key Account Management also handles other such duties as he may deem fit in the execution of his duties or duties as assigned by the Director of Sales, the Chief Sales Officer, or the Employer.
Required Qualifications of the Head of Key Account Management
Education: The Head of Key Account Management must have a master’s degree (Phd preferred) in Sales, Marketing, Customer Relationship Management, Business Management, Business Administration, Communications, or any other related field. An equivalent of the same in working experience is also acceptable for this position.
Experience: A candidate for this position must have a minimum of 7 years in working experience working in key account management position within a fast-paced and highly competitive business environment, preferably working as a Senior Key Account Manager. A suitable candidate will have an impressive track record in meeting and even exceeding sales targets.
The candidate will also have a proven and successful track record in establishing strong and long-term consumer relationships, being able to retain the highest-value relationships. A suitable candidate will also have an ability to lead, develop, and motivate a team of account managers, leading them to the achievement or even surpassing of goals/targets.
Communication Skills: Communication skills are a paramount requirement of this position. First of all the performance of the entire key account management team is dependent on the clarity and effectiveness of communication from the Head of Key Account Management. Additionally, the Head of Key Account Management interacts directly with consumers and, as such, he must be capable of maintaining clear, unambiguous, exhaustive, and fulfilling communications with the consumers leaving them feeling satisfied and tended to.
The Head of Key Account Management will also create reports and presentations for senior sales management, junior key account managers, clients, collaborating personnel, and key stakeholders. For this reason, he must be in a position to communicate even the most complex messages in clear, understandable, and convincing terms as well as being able to tailor messages for varying audiences in a relatable manner.
Ms Office: The Head of Key Account Management must demonstrate high proficiency in Ms Word, PowerPoint, and Ms Excel, which are necessary for the creation of visually and verbally engaging reports and presentations for the senior sales management, clients, key stake holders etc.
Analytical Skill: A candidate for this position must also have a passion and genuine interest in consumer/market research as well as the insights that result from such analyses. The Head of Key Account Management must have an ability to demonstrate an understanding of standard sales analyses and an ability to extract useful insights from raw data and information for the purpose of strategy creation, furthering key account agendas, and enabling the achievement of goals and targets.
Interpersonal Skills: The Head of Key Account Management must be customer-oriented, be patient in order to manage difficult consumers, be result-focused, demonstrate integrity and respect in the performance of his duties, be self-motivated going beyond the call of duty, have an ability to handle multiple projects simultaneously and meet deadlines, have exceptional organizational skills, and demonstrate calmness in uncertain and stressful situations inspiring the same in his team.
People/Leadership Skills: The candidate for this position must be a committed and highly collaborative individual who values the input of colleagues and involves others in important decision making. He must demonstrate and ability to lead with a vision establishing a healthy working culture in his team. The candidate will be likeable and approachable making it easy for junior and collaborative personnel to follow him and enabling him to earn the trust of clients and senior sales personnel.