How Do I Become An Account Manager?

Do you enjoy the excitement of working in sales and the challenge of providing exceptional customer service? If so, you may wonder how to become an account manager. Account managers handle the sales and customer service duties within particular client accounts. These professionals provide support with any problems that arise and help clients determine the products and services that are best suited for their needs.

Account managers work in a variety of industries, including retail trade, wholesale trade, manufacturing, finance and insurance. The position may also exist in service-based businesses, including advertising, marketing and public relations. Still other account managers run their own businesses.

An account manager’s job description varies depending on the industry and company. Some account managers face the task of selling their company, products or services to customers that have not yet agreed to become clients. More commonly, a sales team representative will interact with potential new clients, a task which is also known as “hunting.” An account manager, on the other hand, will focus instead on building a good working relationship with existing clients. This technique, also called “farming,” encourages clients to continue using the company’s products or services. Account managers may communicate with clients regularly, even on a day-to-day basis, by telephone or email.

Account managers must develop a variety of skills to be successful in the field of sales. Customer service skills include the ability to listen to clients’ concerns or needs and responding in a way that helps foster a good working relationship. Account managers should also possess the analytical skills to determine what products or services best fit a client’s needs and what strategy to use to make the sale. Communication skills and the leadership skills that make for productive management techniques are important for success as an account manager.

Aspiring account managers should invest in pursuing a college degree. Many account managers earn a bachelor’s degree in advertising, marketing, public relations or business. Completing a relevant internship during college can also improve a candidate’s chances of obtaining a position as an account manager. Account manager positions may call for additional work experience, but some candidates first accept entry-level positions, such as assistant account manager or junior account executive. A background in retail sales or customer service may not be a requirement, but experience in these positions can help aspiring account managers begin to develop their skills. To enhance their skills and increase future opportunities for advancement, aspiring account managers may also choose to pursue a graduate-level degree at some time during their careers.

The average earning potential of an account manager in the field of sales ranges from $33,804 to $101,299 per year, including bonuses, commission and profit-sharing, according to The median salary is $58,250, well above the $33,840 median annual salary of all professions. If you enjoy human interactions and have a knack for sales, knowing how to become an account manager can put you on the path to a rewarding new career.

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