An account executive usually holds a sales position, typically selling services and products to other businesses and individuals. Generally, the executive's company sets sales quotas that must be met to succeed in this position. The account executive may be provided with clients and/or carry out research and recruiting to gain prospective clients; some cold calling may be necessary. When prospective clients are identified, the executive must work to discover those potential clients' needs and make targeted pitches for services and products that will fulfill their needs; they must then work to close the sale.
After the sales transaction has been carried out, the account executive may work with customer service teams or work directly from clients to determine if products are to clients' satisfaction. When problems are encountered, the account executive may help develop solutions. It may also be essential to work with other areas of the marketing department, such as advertising. The account executive should foster healthy relationships with clients to encourage future purchases.
A bachelor’s degree in an area such as marketing may be needed for these positions, and previous related experience may be required or preferred. Proficiency with basic computer programs is needed, as are strong customer service and communication skills.
Account Executive Tasks
- Solicits and maintains contact with current and prospect key accounts.
- Sell the organization's products and/or services to established customers or new prospects.
- Track activity, prepare and maintain records for sales leads and account status.
- Handle entire inside sales process from proposal to close; reach or exceed sales quotas.
- Attend special training of products and/or services to understand technical aspects of solutions.