Your Customer does not care how much you know, until they know how much care.Damon Richards
While many organisations want to penetrate deeper into the key accounts and maximise the possibilities, very few organisations show interest in building a customer-centric culture. Building Key accounts can be like managing your personal assets.
Building a customer-centric culture, especially within the context of Key Account Management (KAM), requires a concerted effort from leadership, employees at all levels, and a clear strategy aligned with your business goals.
It demands high tenacity and patience to build the culture of Key Account Management.
Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to improve the retention of accounts:
1. Leadership Commitment: Leadership plays a crucial role in setting the tone and direction of the organization’s culture. They need to commit to a customer-centric approach and consistently communicate its importance to the entire company. This commitment should be evident in actions, decisions, and resource allocation. Most importantly, leaders should be willing to invest time to review the team members on a regular basis.
2. Clearly Define Customer-Centric Values: Identify and articulate the core values that emphasize customer-centricity. These values should be integrated into your company’s mission and vision statements. They’ll serve as a foundation for guiding behaviour and decision-making.
3. Employee Training and Development: Provide comprehensive training to employees at all levels, especially those directly involved in Key Account Management. This training should focus on customer service skills, empathy, active listening, and problem-solving.
4. Customer-Focused Metrics and Goals: Align performance metrics and goals with customer-centricity. Instead of solely measuring revenue and profits, consider including metrics related to customer satisfaction, retention rates, and the success of KAM strategies.
5. Cross-functional collaboration: Encourage collaboration among different departments within your organization to ensure a seamless and consistent experience for key accounts. Silos can hinder the delivery of a customer-centric approach.
6. Voice of the Customer (VoC) Programs: Implement VoC programs to gather feedback and insights directly from key accounts. Use this information to improve products, services, and processes according to their needs and preferences.
7. Empowerment and Autonomy: Empower employees, especially those in Key Account Management roles, to make decisions that prioritize customer satisfaction. Give them the autonomy to address issues promptly without having to escalate every matter.
8. Customer Journey Mapping: Map out the entire customer journey for key accounts, identifying touchpoints and pain points. This will help you understand their experience better and make necessary improvements.
9. Continuous Improvement: Foster a culture of continuous improvement by encouraging teams to regularly review and refine processes, based on both positive and negative customer feedback.
10. Recognition and Rewards: Recognize and reward employees who consistently demonstrate exceptional customer-centric behaviour. This can be through formal recognition programs, promotions, or other incentives.
11. Transparent Communication: Maintain transparent communication with key accounts. Keep them informed about changes, updates, and improvements that are being made based on their feedback.
12. Lead by Example: Leaders and managers need to lead by example. Show your commitment to customer-centricity through your actions and decisions.
13. Building adaptability: The business landscape is dynamic, and customer needs evolve over time. Ensure your customer-centric culture is adaptable and responsive to changing circumstances.
14. Celebrate Success Stories: Share success stories related to exceptional customer service and the positive impact on key accounts. This can inspire others to emulate such behaviour.
Building a customer-centric culture takes time and consistent effort. It’s not just about strategies, but also about creating an environment where everyone feels responsible for delivering outstanding customer experiences, especially in the context of Key Account Management.
Kindly visit our Key Account Management Page to acquire a more comprehensive understanding of our work.
To sum up our conviction on the importance of having conducive values for better retention of accounts, sharing a quote here:
To give real service, you must add something which cannot be bought or measured with money, and that is sincerity and integrity.Douglas Adams, author.