I have often been asked, “what makes a great account person”. My initial reaction is usually standard bio stuff – 15+ years of experience, worked on huge brands, strategic leadership skills, strong and trusted relationship builder who can motivate a team and drive results. Yes, this is all true, but also table stakes. When I really ask myself what needs to be at the core of a great account person the answer is quite different. To me 3 things are usually necessary to doing my job well day in and day out.
The first is a never-ending curiosity. Always being curious about your clients business and a bit of what fills their world beyond the office. Being curious about new marketing channels, innovations, technologies and ways of doing things. Showing curiosity about the people on your team and what makes them tick is also essential.
The second is a sense of humour. I truly believe this is essential for survival. Being able to handle challenges and obstacles and unrealistic deadlines is managed much calmly if you always keep things in perspective and bring a sense of comedic brevity to the table. Laughing really hard once a day is sometimes enough to keep the insanity in check.
The third is honesty. Being honest about mistakes and learning from them. Delivering honest and sometimes tough feedback has always done me well. Being honest if you think a presentation is not ready and needs more work or if you truly have a different opinion than a client or colleague. At the end of the day channelling this honesty into meaningful discussion will never lead you astray.
As an Account Director here at Brightworks, I make a genuine effort to epitomize these qualities each and every day.