Account Manager Jobs: Responsibilities and Skills

Account manager jobs play an important role in all industries, whether it is travel or marketing, banking or insurance, and they are aspired to by many people. What responsibilities are typical for people in this position? What kinds of skills are needed to be employed in account manager jobs and perform well?

Responsibilities

An account manager, also known as a sales manager or regional sales manager, works with the company's accounts (clients) to enhance revenue. This is with both existing and prospective clients. They must build effective relationships with their clients, engendering trust and co-operation between the client and the company. He or she may also negotiate contracts to ensure that they meet business needs. These jobs fall in multiple sectors of many industries; in travel, for instance, they could be within a tour operator, an airline, and much more.

Skills Required

Previous Experience:

For many jobs, a previous track record in management and business development - either within a travel company or in the corporate sector - is required, or regarded very highly. Having taken on some of the position's responsibilities within a different role will also put a candidate in a strong position.

Time-keeping:

Account manager jobs are very demanding, and as such require a high level of time-keeping skill. Failure to manage your own workload will make the job impossible - as will the inability to take on extra work, sometimes at the last minute. Being able to work quickly and efficiently, putting in overtime where necessary, is essential.

Business Planning Skills:

Beyond personal time-keeping, managers must be able to make plans for the business - and then fit their work into it - with the overall company goals in mind. Enhancing revenue is at the heart of this. The nuances of business planning require a great deal of skill.

Customer Service Skills:

Account manager jobs are client-facing, requiring a very high level of customer service skills to successfully build and develop relationships. No matter what the communication medium - telephone, email, face-to-face - the manager must be personable and able to compromise, while keeping business objectives in mind. Negotiation skills are a must if contracts are part of the company's requirements for their managers. Excellent presentation skills are also necessary.

Other:

The above points cover the major skills required for account manager jobs. However, there are others. As in most jobs, the ability to work under pressure - either in a team or autonomously - is an absolute must. Additionally, for account manager jobs, the position is often field-based, so individuals must be highly motivated.

Barbara Kolosinska (MREC CertRP) is a Sales Director for C&M, a leading travel recruitment agency who specialise in finding their clients the perfect account manager jobs across all sectors of the travel industry. C&M have access to the largest choice of account manager jobs from the UK's top travel employers.

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