How to Become an Account Executive
Becoming an account executive is a popular, sought-after job for the business inclined.
However, further education is required to rise to this position, which raises a dilemma. Is it worthwhile to invest in a course for this role? Consider these points for an informed decision.
What is an Account Executive?
A quick definition of an account executive is a person who exchanges information between a company and client, aiming to fulfil the latter’s needs – like closing a sales deal. If you want a fast-paced full-time job focused on business development, then this would be best suited to you.
Let’s discuss the more pressing matter at hand: the pervasive fear that you’ll do all this work to get yourself qualified, but you won’t find a job by the end of it. But according to the stats, job growth in this area is consistent across the next five years, a 21.7% increase to be exact.
Duties & Day-to-day Tasks
A condensed list of an account executive’s responsibilities is as follows:
Account executives often have a bachelor’s degree under their belt, usually majoring in advertising, marketing, communication or economics. Practical experience in this field, taking the form of an internship or an entry-level position, is particularly sought after. Many account executives start off small, for instance, becoming a sales representative or an administrative assistant, and then subsequently working their way up to the executive position.
However, if you don’t want to dedicate all that time right away, short courses are often an excellent way to get your foot in the door. It can offer you qualifications for entry-level positions mentioned previously, and skills to add to your repertoire, like how to close your sales and how to present your objectives.
This one is a given. Since you’ll be in contact with both your clients and other representatives of the company, you’ll have to be on top of things always, conversing over phone calls, in-person meetings and through emails.
On the flip side, you’ll also need to know when to stay silent. Often, clients will come to you to complain about your product. When that comes around, you’d want to stop and hear what they have to say, and then respond accordingly, mainly drawing from your knowledge of the relevant product.
You’ll have many projects to complete and people to organise, which means being professional, confident and passionate in the presence of your team is vital.
As an account executive, you’ll often be the first point of contact for your clients, meaning that first impressions are everything. You’ll need to know how to handle a wide range of people, and learn how to keep you calm with the more forceful variety.
Much of your job revolves around the product you’re selling. A good account executive will research the product inside and out and should be able to answer their client’s questions correctly.
Account executives are often promoted to sales managers, sales directors, sales VP and then finally to Chief Revenue Officer, once they have distinguished themselves from the rest of the pack.
In short, becoming an account executive isn’t as difficult as you might think. You don’t need to pour a massive amount of time and effort into courses, especially considering a lot of the education you need will be on the job. If you think it’s worth it, then take the chance and get qualified.