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6 Strategic Account Management Roles Every Company Needs to Know About

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Written by Mike Schultz
President, RAIN Group

Ask leaders at companies how much more they believe they could be selling to their strategic accounts and you don't hear 5%, 10%, or 20%.

It's usually more like, "We should be selling 2 times…3 times…even more."

Ask what's in their way and you'll often get this answer, "Our strategic account managers just aren't doing what they need to do to penetrate the account, cross-sell, and keep the competition out so we can truly grow our accounts to their potential."

The reasons vary why this is the case. But when it comes to the strategic account management team, six of the reasons are predictable. There are six distinct roles that must be played for strategic account management initiatives to deliver at peak potential.

Few companies define the roles and play all six well.

Read: What Is Key Account Management?

The first step to changing this is to know what these roles are.


6 Strategic Account Management Roles

The 6 strategic account management roles include:

  1. Results Driver
  2. Relationship Lead
  3. Innovator
  4. Collaborator
  5. Technical Expert
  6. Project Manager


Before you read on, note that, for the most part, these roles aren't played by six distinct people on a strategic account team. The strategic account manager often plays several roles, and other members of their team play multiple roles as well.

Download Now: Competencies of Strategic Account Managers

6 Account Management Roles

Below are examples of the common roadblocks to successful strategic account management, and the role that needs to be played to turn each one around.

As you consider the 6 Strategic Account Management roles, keep in mind that they can be played by any number of people (one, two, five, etc.) but they should all be played to some extent.

That is, only if you want to be a top performer and ensure you create and deliver all the value you should to your strategic accounts—and generate the revenue, profit, and account retention you know is possible.

Download: Competencies of Key Account Managers
Last Updated July 25, 2023

Topics: Strategic Account Management