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Monday, 29 April 2013

Insights on embedding successful Key Client Management

Part 6 of 6

Mobilising Key Client Management effectively and getting the benefits are dependent on having identified your Key Clients, the person responsible for the relationship and having defined the membership of the team that delivers services to the client.  In practice, you also need to have identified a person who will provide the dedicated marketing support to allow your Client Managers and Client Teams to manage Key Client Management activity alongside project delivery.
Having defined who are your Crown Jewels, Key Clients and Valued Clients, you should revisit your client list annually to assess whether you have a valued client that is growing enough to become a key client, or indeed whether one of your key clients is now working with someone else (after a take-over for example). 
Whilst events that cause demotions are likely to be high profile, you should watch your valued clients to see if they now meet the criteria you have set.

To effectively manage your key clients, you need regular contact with them that is relationship focused rather than project-focussed.  The Client Manager should be meeting with them to discuss their future strategic needs, assess their current opportunities and threats and to discuss ways that your company can help them to achieve their objectives.
The Client Team should also review the relationship with the key client on an annual basis, using tools that measure the strength of the relationship to drive out actions to improve it.  A review may also be kicked off by a major change within the client, for example, a change in personnel with the influence to affect buying decisions. 
You need to make sure that your key clients are happy with the work that you do for them and that you understand what it is about your service that they value most.  To do that, you need to carry out regular Client Satisfaction Surveys and most importantly to act on the information that they provide.  You will also get valuable information about what your clients’ value about the work that you do for them.  Use this information to make your marketing more compelling.
The end of every project should be finished with project closedown that celebrates the success of what went well, identifies what you would do differently and develops useful case studies, signed off by the client.  The close-down meeting can also be an opportunity to examine if there are any other services that your client needs for the next stage of their development.
Why not see how we helped Cundall revitalise their Win Work capability here
See Part 1 here
See Part 2 here
See Part 3 here
See Part 4 here
See Part 5 here
See our company LinkedIn profile here

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