In our view, many organizations struggle with Account Planning because they’ve established overly ambitious Account Plan completion goals (often to get them all done by a specific date) but spend little time reviewing the Account Plan and even less time managing the execution of the Account Plan.
So why the struggle? It’s not the account manager or the salesperson. Its the sales leader.
Here’s why: How much time would you expect a sales manager to spend on reviewing the progress of her top 20 Account Plans on a monthly basis? If the review focuses on managing the key activities to execute the Account Plan, we’d suggest at least 30 minutes per plan per month. Remember, this is your 20 most important clients, so math gets us to 10 hours per month. Question: How many of your sales managers have an extra 10 hours per month for this effort? Or even five hours?
So what’s the fix? Read here: A pragmatic approach to account planning.