I know lots of Account Managers who dread the annual (or hopefully quarterly) account planning process. They think it’s a waste of time and that they can just coast through with their customer relationships, and that everything is going to work out fine.
Well, as you can probably guess, it doesn’t always turn out that way. These days, customers have all the power and they can leave or cancel with very little notice.
So where’s the power in account planning?
It’s in showing the customer that you heard them, you are taking action, and that you CARE. Yes, a little empathy can go a long way in making a customer relationship super successful.
Account planning is about looking at the world through your customer’s eyes, and figuring out how to solve problems for them. It’s NOT about just selling more of your product or service to your customer.
So you heard what the customer said, you know what they need, and you care enough to take action. Once you have taken action, you care enough to keep the customer in the loop about how you are addressing their need/issue/problem.
And guess what? Caring about your customer’s success is one of the best ways to ensure your success.
Empathy is one of the hallmarks of great Key Account Managers. Account planning is where you can put that into action.
What else? How do you show your customers you care?