Account Planning is one of the top initiatives that most companies recognize as essential to customer growth, and fundamental to up-selling and cross-selling your company’s services and solutions.
So why is it so difficult to institutionalize account planning, in spite of the recognition how important it is to customer growth? In my view, the heart of the challenge resides in the reality that sales and operating teams don’t recognize that account planning is an entirely different motion than quarterly business reviews, sales pipeline calls and forecast calls.
To that end, the leadership teams typically approach account plan reviews (if they have them at all) as a series of 30 minute drive-bys, rather than a series of collaborative, serious and thoughtful interactions to align resources and efforts toward a limited number of accounts. The new motions required for account planning can be difficult as switching from playing catcher to first base. In fact, its incredibly hard and it reminds me of one of my favorite move lines from Moneyball.