How to progress your career in Client Services

Working in Client Services is great if you’re a people person and have a passion for helping others. But what does it take to become an effective Account Manager?

Whether you’re an aspiring Account Manager looking to move up the career ladder or want to become more effective in your current AM role, our new blog looks at the key qualities that can help you be effective.

Communication is key

This can’t be emphasised enough and is the number one skill all successful Account Managers are good at. You could have the best campaign in the world, but if the communication isn’t there, the client will be on the hunt for another agency. Why? Effective communication is key when making presentations, establishing relationships, writing detailed reports and communicating over email and on the phone.

In a digital age, we can, of course, communicate only via email and there are now an array of apps such as Slack, Trello and CRM systems which help us keep on top of communication and status updates. While these are great, they’re no substitute for good old fashioned interaction. That’s why those Account Managers who pick up the telephone or arrange regular face to face meetings are the ones who are going to retain clients longer and increase retainer values.

They share and listen

There’s really not much point in one way communication, which is why effective Account Managers understand the value of both sharing and listening. They constantly and consistently share important information with the right people, whether that’s updates to clients, client insights to their own team members, or account performance to key decisions makers.

They also listen more than they talk. By learning what’s really going on, Account Managers proactively cast a wide-angle lens into issues to get people to share with them. This approach to constant and strong communication helps to ensure that goals, priorities and expectations are clear to everyone involved. 

They ask questions

How many times have you been sat in a meeting or have been tasked with a project but are afraid of asking a question in case you look like you don’t know what you’re doing? We’ve all been there, either too afraid to admit that we don’t know everything or trying to sell to the client without really understanding their needs.

Elite Account Managers on the other hand are like detectives and will ask all the questions they need to get to the desired outcome. As the saying goes… there’s no such thing as a dumb question. Each client situation is unique, therefore it’s crucial you get under their skin and understand their DNA so you have a comprehensive understanding of who they are, what makes them tick and what they want to achieve.

Again, this comes back to the sales side of an Account Manager role.

They’re organised and detailed

From colour co-ordinating different campaigns to creating daily checklists and setting weekly goals, an effective Account Manager has to stay organised so your clients trust you can keep everything together and organised for them.

Going hand-in-hand with being organised, every Account Manager is extremely detailed oriented. Your clients are running their day-to-day business and trusting you to pay attention to the little details that they may overlook. So, before sending over any piece of work make sure you check things thoroughly. It’s little details like this that makes for great account management.

Results orientated

All these traits are especially valuable because they do more than help Account Manager’s manage the day-to-day successfully. They also help to get results. It’s important not to lose sight of their own agency’s goals when it comes to retaining profitable accounts and their role in generating results, but also getting the right results for clients. You’ll need to monitor activity and actively seeks ways to both attract new clients and upsell services to current clients.

Ultimately, being a high performing Account Manager requires a combination of interpersonal and goal-oriented skills. Developing these key traits is essential to successfully securing, retaining and building client relationships and as importantly, being effective and enjoying your role as an Account Manager.

If you’re looking for your next steps in an Account Management role, contact us today.

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