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all about account managers

Account managers play a key role in helping organizations maintain current clients and add new clients to their portfolio. A move up from sales rep, those who show promise and the ability to intuitively understand clients’ needs and manage them are well suited for account management positions.

Your goal is to create long lasting relationships with the customers assigned to you. Your job is to oversee these customers, help them address business needs, and identify opportunities to grow the account. You are the first contact for your customers, and you will act as the liaison between the client and other contacts within your company. A role that is always in demand, job prospects are good.

what account manager jobs entail

Account managers work in an office setting, although in some roles, you may be able to work remotely. You can expect to work normal office hours, although you may need to work during evenings to meet tight deadlines or address a client’s needs. Some travel may be required to meet with customers and attend industry events. You typically report to a director of sales, or a senior sales leader.

average account manager salaries

The average salary for account managers in sales or marketing in Canada is approximately $50,000 per year. The average starting salary for these positions is just over $36,000 annually. With experience and a proven track record of success, you can expect to make up to $80,000 or more. Bonuses and commission may also help boost your average annual salary.

your day to day tasks

Your day-to-day tasks will vary based on your current sales initiatives and campaigns. Expect to interact with clients on a daily basis and assist them with their needs. Some of the tasks you can expect to be part of your role as an account manager include the following:

  • sales meetings
  • acting as the lead contact for customer management
  • building and maintaining customer relationships
  • negotiating contracts and business agreements
  • ensuring solutions are delivered to the customer on time
  • exploring opportunities to create new business
  • forecasting and tracking sales metrics
  • assisting with other customer service initiatives as required

where you can work

Account managers can work for any organization that is reliant upon sales for company success. Companies in all industries require professionals to manage and monitor client accounts to ensure customers are properly cared for. In most cases, these roles are predominant in cities and regions across Canada that have a large business presence, such as in the Greater Toronto Area, Montreal, or Vancouver. Account manager roles are not only found with large corporations, but businesses of all sizes that are sales focused.

what you bring to the table

Account managers require adequate sales industry experience and should possess the following skills and abilities:

  • strong research skills and ability to learn quickly
  • experience working with CRMs
  • experience delivering customer-focused solutions
  • a strong sales background
  • excellent problem solving skills
  • a strong communicator
  • the ability to listen and interpret customers’ needs
  • strong time management and organizational skills

training and certifications

To be considered for account manager roles with sales and marketing organizations, most companies will require that you have a bachelor’s degree in business administration, sales, marketing, or other related fields. If you plan to further your career, a post graduate degree or industry certification can help make you a candidate for promotion. Additional specific training for the role will be provided by the hiring company.

where your career is headed

Sales and marketing account manager positions are often a step up from entry level sales and marketing positions, and a stepping stone to key account manager positions. Many account managers move up to more senior roles such as regional account manager, senior account manager, account executive, or business development manager. Over time, you can work your way up to operations management, VP and director level roles. Some account managers also move into other unrelated roles in marketing and sales.

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