Retention has become increasingly important. Current economic and market uncertainties mean companies are relying more heavily on their existing customer base to grow their businesses while retaining top talent is essential as competition for highly skilled account managers has increased.
Engagement and outcomes are two common themes when it comes to the retention of both clients and employees. Engaged employees perform better, experience less burnout, and stay in organizations longer. Likewise, engaged customers often achieve their desired outcomes and are easier to retain.
One way to boost engagement, outcomes, and retention is by offering learning opportunities. Of course, there is training and onboarding, things that both employees and customers expect and crave.
But in this ever-changing world and marketplace, needs continually change, creating the need for continuous learning. Plus, training of any sort isn’t one-and-done. Reinforcement, repetition, and collaboration help people get the most out of what they have learned and effectively apply it.
Peer learning achieves this and more when applied both internally and externally.
Internal Peer Learning
Key account management (KAM) is a team sport. Peer learning opportunities are essential to ensure collaboration and communication across the team. These engagements also facilitate problem-solving and enable reps to get answers to their questions.
Whether you are implementing new software or processes, or adapting to evolving customer and market requirements, peer learning is beneficial.
KAM Peer Learning Examples
There are various forms of peer learning to consider, depending on what you are trying to achieve. Some options include:
Peer coaching: Pairing reps to coach and learn from one another while holding each other accountable enables reps to develop new skills and adjust to new processes together.
Team meetings: Peer learning during KAM or cross-functional team meetings can be as simple as discussing various approaches to achieve results. This enables people to see new ways to work or handle issues instead of reinventing the wheel. Team members can learn from the breadth of knowledge and experiences of their colleagues.
Office hours: These gatherings are essential to any successful change management process or new implementation. They are routine opportunities to answer questions, and talk about what’s working or issues being encountered and how to overcome them. They can also be used to share best practices, do micro-training, and conduct a Q&A session.
Internal Slack channels: Ongoing internal communication across communities within your organization can be sorted by role, industry focus, or KAM team for example. Encouraging this type of less formal peer engagement enables on-demand peer learning. Individuals can share successes and present questions or challenges to their respective groups as needed to learn from one another.
Peer Learning for Customers
It’s likely that your VIP clients decided to work with your organization to tap into your knowledge and expertise while taking the best advantage of your product or service. Beyond solid customer onboarding, it’s important to offer your clients learning opportunities to help them get the most from your product and achieve their loftiest goals or outcomes.
Peer learning enables you to help these clients accelerate and enhance the results they receive by being your valued customer.
Customer Peer Learning Examples
Peer learning opportunities for your clients give them a way to gain deeper insights and application ideas by engaging not only with your organization but also with your customer community. Some examples of customer peer learning include:
Office hours: As it is with the internal version of these gatherings, existing customers are invited to get answers to their questions, to learn best practices, and meet other community members routinely. These help clients learn how to get the most from your solution and accelerate progress toward attaining their desired goals for its use.
New feature training: This is a great way to keep customers abreast of new capabilities and how to best use them. This sort of training may also be offered during routine customer office hours as well in place of a best practices segment.
User groups: Creating groups of users that meet routinely to share how they are using your product, their successful outcomes from using your solution, and to present questions to the group offers a unique type of peer learning. These engagements are facilitated by your organization, but the content comes from people who are actually using your platform or service in their day-to-day. This is social proof and offers the group new perspectives.
Peer-to-Peer discussion forums: These forums can be segmented by industry or role and conducted online or as round tables or panel discussions. Like user groups, these forums enable customers to gain insights and knowledge from one another.
Customer advisory boards: These executive boards enable C-level contacts from top accounts to collaborate and exchange ideas. Like other customer groups, it’s an opportunity to see how other clients like them are utilizing and benefiting from your solution. It can help them achieve greater success and outcomes from partnering with your business as well.
Live training events: Offer your community, in-person events and webinars featuring industry experts. You’ll help them level up their skills and accelerate the attainment of their loftiest goals for using your product or service. KAMCon, coming back to Boulder in April 2024, is a great example of this type of event.
Benefits of Peer Learning
Regardless of whether peer learning is internal or customer-focused, there are numerous benefits to implementing this practice including:
- Increased engagement
- Access to group knowledge, experiences, and feedback
- Better outcomes
- Increased product or process adoption
- Increased satisfaction
- Reduced churn
- Revenue predictability
All these benefits increase participants’ learning, results, satisfaction, and retention which leads to more predictable revenue because you reduce the need to constantly replace churned customers and KAMs.
Experience the Benefits of Peer Learning
The upside of leveraging peer learning both internally and externally are undeniable. Start offering these powerful learning opportunities to your account managers and your valued customers. They’ll expand their knowledge through engagement, communication, and collaboration so they can accelerate toward greater outcomes. Then, your KAMs and customers will be easier to retain, and you’ll achieve better revenue stability.
Kapta offers various peer learning opportunities including our upcoming Best Practices Office Hours exclusively for Kapta customers. The next Office Hours are scheduled for Friday, October 27th @ 8 a.m. PCT/11 a.m. EST. Reach out if you need access information or to learn more about how Kapta can boost your KAM program results.