By Di Spencer, Pf Web Editor
Account management has ceased to be the ‘next big thing’ and become an essential skill for anyone in pharmaceutical sales. However, do you know what abilities define account management and how you compare to your colleagues in performing them?
The National Health Intelligence Service’s (NHIS) Account Management Benchmark Survey is currently underway and compares the self-perceived talents of its anonymous respondents, which are predominantly key account managers and specialist representatives.
The interim analysis of the results has revealed some interesting truths about account managers in pharma today. Although most of the respondents were positive about their abilities in team-working and partnerships, interpersonal communication, customer focus and use of supporting data, they were less confident on product knowledge (both own and competitors’), commercial focus and account strategy and planning.
Has the market awareness element of account management been drowned out by the focus on relationships?
It is also bewildering that a number of professionals that class themselves key account managers or NHS liaison managers responded that they do not seek to build long-term relationships in preference to a short-term win, implying there may be varied interpretations of the KAM role across the industry.
For more on the survey, a comparison to the 2008 results and details of how to enter, see NHIS’s recent Pf article.
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