Most large organizations have a Major Accounts Program or Global Accounts Program today. You may be asking yourself, “How can the Executive Sponsor Program and Major Accounts Program complement each other?” If you look at what each program is chartered to do, it will become clear how they can work well together.
- The Major Accounts Program is focused on account penetration and account growth within the account. These programs are typically run out of the sales organization. The Major Accounts Manager will leverage executives from your company when working a deal (deal focused).
- The Executive Sponsor Program (ESP) is focused on a dedicated relationship/ownership with an executive from your company and your customer executive. As I have discussed in previous blogs, the benefits are more long term (enhanced executive relationships, retention, loyalty, wallet share/revenue and innovation.)
Gary Vastola from Xerox commented on how their Major Accounts Program fits with their ESP: “Our Focus Executive Program (ESP) complements our Major Accounts Program by fostering partnerships between our Focus Executives and Account Teams to build client relationships and maximize customer satisfaction.”
If you don’t have a Major Account Program and you are considering one, starting with a Major Accounts Program first will set the organization up for success to establish broader Executive Level Programs such as Advisory Councils and ESP. How? Major Account Programs drive certain key processes and behaviors that ultimately set an ESP up for success. These methodologies and processes include a standard sales process, account planning, logging information into a CRM tool and compensating your major account managers for the behavior you want.