An account manager working in the sales sector is the person responsible for developing and nurturing a relationship with a specific client. This person will be the main contact for the client, as well as taking charge of other staff who are responsible for delivering services to that client.
The pathway into employment as an account manager differs greatly between different companies. Candidates come from a range of disciplines, including direct sales, business management, public relations and various technical roles. However, recruitment agencies are looking for candidates who also have exceptional communication and influencing skills, and a related degree is often a prerequisite for employment.
Account managers with a combination of technical skills and sales acumen are in high demand in a number of companies in the UK. Major retailers, manufacturers and marketing companies rely on account managers to retain clients and win new business, so exceptional interpersonal skills are a must. Key employers of account managers in the UK include major pharmaceutical companies such as GlaxoSmithKline and car manufacturers such as Ford and Vauxhall Motors. However, a great many industries and employers that have service and supply contracts with clients require skilled and experienced account managers.
Account managers often travel extensively and work irregular hours, so a level of personal sacrifice is expected. However, for those willing to put the needs of a client relationship first, salaries of up to £80,000 per year are achievable.