Bienvenue - Welcome!

Bienvenue sur le blog de la Relation BtoB ! Welcome to the B2B Relationship Blog!
Ce blog se veut un lieu de partage pour tous ceux qui s'intéressent aux relations inter-organisationnelles. Son auteur aime l'idée d'un "slow blog" où l'on s'arrêterait pour penser un peu... This blog aims at becoming a sharing platform for all those interested in inter-organizational relationships. Its author likes the idea of a "slow blog" where you take time to think for a while...
Sur la page de bienvenue, vous trouverez des points de vue, des discussions sur les sujets indiqués, des billets d'humeur, des commentaires de lectures, des infos et agendas, et ce que nous en ferons collectivement ! On the welcome page, you will find points of view, discussions on labelled topics, reactions, comments on readings, information and agenda posts, and what we shall collectively make out of it!
Sur la page "Formation", vous trouverez des solutions de formation, soit en tant que participant, soit en tant que formateur... A ce propos, est-ce toujours celui que l'on croit qui apprend le plus ? On the Training page, you will find training solutions, either as a trainee or as a trainer, especially teh author's published cases... By the way, are those who learn most always the ones we think...?



lundi 12 décembre 2016

Key Account Management as a Profession - Critical Need for Wanted Improvements

While the third edition of the (French-spoken) Key Account Management Symposium is already set for February 2 & 3, 2017 at Maison France-Amériques (Franklin Roosevelt Avenue, Paris), some testimonials from the 2016 edition of this event reveal strong messages. 

Communicating in English to international companies about a French-spoken event in France: a silly idea? Not so much, even potentially very meaningful, as will be discussed during one of the twelve workshops of the event: going global does not mean forsaking local cultures and environments, which precisely is the « raison d’être” of this article.

Value-added KAM Testimonials for International Companies


During the second edition of the symposium (February 4 & 5, 2016), operational executives from various groups, both in the services sector (EGENCIA, SUEZ) and in the industry (ASCO NUMATICS, ESSILOR, NEXANS, ROQUETTE, SANOFI, SCHNEIDER ELECTRIC, SPIE) had shared their experience in simultaneous interactive workshops in front of 20 to 35 people each. What is striking in the evaluations and testimonies of the auditors is the need for exchange and professionalization in a format complementary to that of training per se and characterized by the richness of the exchanges between practitioners and the confrontation of ideas on the basis of company experience. The selection of the five testimonies below illustrates these very significant returns.

Aurélie Van Eeckhoven, Directrice Commerciale et Marketing, ALSTOM

Refocused on its transportation activities since the sale of its energy business to GENERAL ELECTRIC, the ALSTOM group has been in a profound changing mode. This context has caused a major upheaval of sales teams in their core businesses. The "Key Account Manager" function already exists at ALSTOM but is "fairly close to a traditional commercial organization". The company "wants to reorient this function towards a more strategic approach and make it a real tool to bring the customer back to the heart of its decisions". Aurélie Van Eeckhoven's participation in the Symposium gave her the opportunity, through feedback from other companies, to find new solutions to better understand the needs of her clients and understand how they evolve. She needed to come back with something concrete. Her attention was particularly attracted by companies such as SCHNEIDER ELECTRIC, whose problems are similar to those of ALSTOM, and who is very mature on the subject of Key Account Management.

Eric Pasquier, Directeur Commercial France, ASCO NUMATICS

With more than 100 years of experience, ASCO NUMATICS, a subsidiary of the American group EMERSON, is a leader in the automation and fluid control market, and operates in a wide range of sectors, from agri-food to automotive production, energy production, chemicals, etc. Its Sales Director France makes the competitiveness of its teams its daily leitmotiv, and insists that "Key Account Management is everyone's business in the company". His participation in the 2016 edition of the symposium imposed itself for Eric after listening to his collaborators who had attended the first edition of the event (2015) and came back with "another vision of their profession" and other founding elements such as "the need to draw up an account plan, to understand a client's overall strategy and business model or the interest of the networks". This is why this experience, which he recognizes "far more impactful than a classical training", perfectly « addressed his expectations".

Eric Vanderlekem, Responsable Grands Comptes, MANULOC

Established more than 40 years ago, MANULOC is a recognized specialist in ground handling. This family SME is developing in Europe (300 million euros of turnover), with strong growth ambitions that Eric Vanderlekem, Head of Key Accounts, intends to make concrete. To succeed in its European expansion, the company must "revisit its commercial strategy". This is why it has set up a Large Accounts structure, with the objective of doubling its turnover in 5 years. For this Head of Key Accounts, "mastering buyers' decision-making levers" represents a very central subject, "which was precisely addressed at this symposium". With this in mind, the company plans to launch Key Account Management training courses soon. Its goal: "Boost your business strategy"!

Thierry Julia, Directeur Commercial Grands Comptes, ADISSEO

ADISSEO is the world leader in the production of additives and nutritional solutions for animal feed. This large SME (turnover of more than 1.5 billion euros in 150 countries) counts more than 2,600 customers. Its important international development requires the company to reorganize its business around a large corporate vision. "We have started to set up Key Account Management internally, but our approach is far from being structured." The goal is to "see further in the business strategy", in particular to approach international or domestic customers and develop new products. At ADISSEO, Key Account Managers perform this function in addition to their core business (often sales management), and this issue was discussed during symposium workshops: "the advantage of this original format is to allow professionals who are not in the same markets, hence not competitors, to exchange on similar issues ".

Xavier Haffreingue, Directeur Grands Comptes AIR LIQUIDE

AIR LIQUIDE is the world leader in gases, technologies and services for industry and health (nearly 20 billion euros in sales) and is present in 80 countries with more than 50,000 employees. More than ever, the group seeks new levers of performance. Xavier Haffreingue manages a team of 15 employees who collectively manage a portfolio of 100 major accounts, representing more than a third of the company's turnover. That's how important the Key Account Management theme is! By enrolling in the workshops, he first wanted to discover this new format of professional encounters and, beyond that, be able to listen, exchange and benefit from the problems of others. Beyond numerous examples to meditate in teams, Xavier Haffreingues withdrew from this symposium the richness of the exchanges and the confrontation of the points of view between participants and / or speakers (all operational Key Account Management), with a particular sensitivity to the need for new growth drivers in the face of ever more complex purchases. "

Findings and observations


What these testimonials reveal can initially be declined in three points
  • Need for exchanges between operators in a variety of business environments, fostering the discovery of a wide variety of situations, which can also balance a sense of "loneliness" in the absence of benchmarks and standards on an emerging profession.
  • Need for a confrontation of ideas in balanced discussions allowing the learning of new know-how and the enrichment of the points of view and of effective practices.
  • Recognition that the professionalization of a function like that of KAM (and the global approach of Key Account Management that goes with it) is extremely complex and takes time: that having often been improvised it is not a fatality: structured ramping-up processes exist, even with limited means !
Beyond that, two key points emerge from these observations, but also from those of the symposium’s organizers: HALIFAX Consulting and ESSEC Business School:
  • The development of the KAM function has only just begun, as Hubert Faucher, Professor at ESSEC and co-organizer of the symposium, recalls in his book "Key Account Manager: Vendeur ou Chef d’Orchestre?” (KAWA Publishing,2015). Much remains to be done, both in training and consulting and especially, somewhat in between, in networking events such as the Key Account ManagementSymposium.
  • This function requires highly sought-after profiles, whose identification is one of the most delicate tasks of a recruitment department. « It takes ample time to shape-up a KAM" recalls Frédéric Vendeuvre, co-founder of the HALIFAX firm and co-organizer of the symposium. Such an individual has to combine those simultaneous talents of a Strategist, a Manager and a Leader, coordinating project teams at the service of client structures in all their differences and diversities.

So, what's new for the 2017 Symposium?


We keep the same pedagogy based on two-hour interactive workshops, with some innovations which you will discover via the link below. One last word: we innovate this year with the introduction of digital technologies serving KAM development...


Aucun commentaire:

Enregistrer un commentaire