Workshop: Thursday 27th June, SDA Bocconi School of Management, Milan
Our popular workshop format offers KAM topic-focused presentations by experienced practitioners and KAM experts, followed by group discussions on interesting questions and challenges. Everyone present can share their experiences and benefit from those of others.
'AKAM Technical' workshops are half-day intensive, smaller-group learning sessions at which an expert workshop leader shares specific techniques with practitioners.
We also run an annual conference with a more traditional conference presentation format and therefore more speakers.
Meetings are held in a different location each time as far as possible, so that AKAM can reach as many people around Europe as we can. Presentations and, where possible, discussion outputs are uploaded afterwards to the Member Resource area of the website.
Have you ever emerged from a negotiation wondering how and why did it all go wrong? It’s not just selling negotiations that can be brutal – securing enough resources internally or making the right decisions for your customer can be just as difficult. Even in close KAM relationships and great KAM programmes, negotiation plays a critical part. This is an intensive learning, small group ‘AKAM Technical’ workshop. Go to Events to register.
We have a dynamic and informative line-up for this event: the challenging and entertaining practitioner Kristian Kaas Mortensen of Girteka Logistics, with a much requested case study; expert consultant with huge experience to offer you, Dr Brit van Ooijens; and host professor Stephan Henneberg to present his research on stress factors in selling. Find out what works and what doesn't for yourself in a very interactive workshop. Sign up now!
The conference covered a fascinating range of topics in KAM, from both practitioner and academic speakers. We talked about establishing 'legitimacy', which applies across all businesses, not just massive long-term projects: how KAM is different in emerging markets: understanding how to dig deeper and be more creative with customers: how to make sure you've chosen the right key accounts: and how to establish a KAM programme (and how long it takes!).
Metrics are crucial in KAM, as in so many areas of business. They underpin diagnostics, strategic decisions, implementation tracking, operational delivery monitoring, risk assessment and individual performance measurement. In these four hours a whole workbook of KAM metrics was exposed and explained, together with instructions on how to collect and how to use the information.
There are many misconceptions about what it takes to be a successful key account manager, particularly among those companies who believe that it is really a sales role. This meeting made it clear that selling is far from the most important activity or competency required. We identified the desired multi-skilled profile, but accepted that different customers should be matched with appropriate key account managers, while recognising the common core of required competencies - high-level networking, for example.
While acknowledging that GAM is not an easy initiative, presenters showed the importance, in fact, the necessity of having a GAM programme for global businesses. Different models are possible, but each has its issues and, which ever is chosen, it takes time and mistakes made and managed to implement. In a very practical session, GAM programme directors and global account managers widened their options by sharing their approaches.
Uncovering a wide range of KAM topics for KAM programme directors, key account managers and everyone else involved in the 'KAM sector': Key account teams; customer value; SAM at salesforce; KAM implementation frameworks; KAM as catalysts; key account retention in service businesses, and more..... A great opportunity to learn, to discuss and to network!
Professor Ivan Snehota, the well-known authority on supplier/customer relationships, shared his insights into the differences from his years of research together with practitioners from big and small companies. In fact, KAM in big companies can be really difficult, while SMEs can apply their agility to be very effective. However, Armelle Dupont pointed out some essential decisions that SMEs sometimes miss, with extra insights into SME KAM from Mattias Bernhard of Loccioni. Critical research on the value of added services was offered by Dr Nima Hierati.
Key issues from AKAM's Chairman: why is it so difficult to engage senior management? Is the reason resistance or lack of understanding? Doug Gordon of Davy Asset Management on senior managers' role in key account manager well-being; Dr Lesley Murphy demonstrating why they should not step back after KAM set-up; and Dominykas Cibulskas of Walmart identifies 'the octopus in the office'.
How/can you challenge your customer on new procurement processes? Norway's national oil company, Statoil, shared its experience of current Procurement. Can you still create value? Where is procurement going? Professor Per Ingvar Olsen's research on how deals and business networks facilitate collaborative innovation offered a productive approach, while Dr Kevin Wilson discussed the role of the key account manager.
Mike Green, RM Results explored the nature of value in KAM and how it is created. Strong research-based inputs came from Professor Björn Ivens (University of Bamburg) and Sebastian Forkman (Queen Mary’s University) on the importance of networks for key account managers, particularly internal networks, and how they use them; and the effects of deprioritising customers and how subsequent performance is affected. With experience in law firms, Richard Hinwood of Withers Worldwide looked at crucial issues in professional service firms that impact on KAM success.
KAM professionals from every angle of KAM activity - key account managers, KAM programme directors; KAM academics and KAM specialists in consulting, training and development - discussed the reasoning behind the birth of AKAM, its hopes and ambitions. The workshop carefully considered the demand for key account managers’ competencies alongside AKAM’s proposals for professional diplomas offering the opportunity to gain a qualification in KAM.