Top Takeaways from ThinkLA’s Fourth Edition of AdU: Account Management
Jake Hay, Account Executive, PopShorts
“Being passionate about your job, and recognizing the basic skills you need to do your job are just that; the basic skills. You have to really dig down deep inside yourself. That’s where you will find the best you, you can be.” - Lisa Tanner, VP Account Director at RPA.
“It is important to be someone that can provide value. Don’t just see it at taking orders and planning meetings. You need to know the project, your client and your agency. That’s how you provide value.” - Kelly Carroll, VP Account Director at MullenLowe.
After a year in remission, ThinkLA revisited one of their most popular sessions, AdU: Account Management. This one-night class was meant to inspire, educate and connect members of the Think LA community interested in bettering their skills and understanding of account management. Hosted at RPA with a near capacity turnout, Lisa Tanner, VP account director at RPA, did a great job at keeping the session educational while maintaining a very relaxed environment while teaching “How to be Successful”, while Kelly Carroll, VP account director at MullenLowe taught “The Project Starting Line”.
This event was invaluable for any entry-mid level account manager, and I highly suggest attending next year’s event. Until then though, enjoy my top takeaways and learnings.
HOW TO BE SUCCESSFUL
What does it take?
· You have to be proactive, prepared, dependable and organized.
o Always have a plan, a back-up plan and a back-up back-up plan
Go from good to great!
· Don’t compare yourself to others.
o You are awesome, other people are also awesome and that’s an awesome thing.
· Having a mentor is a must.
o A mentor is your personal cheerleader. Someone who keeps you motivated & focused while providing a judgement free source to ask questions and learn.
§ If you don’t currently have a mentor, ThinkLA just launched a mentorship program! Details can be found here: http://www.thinkla.org/mpage/MentorshipProgram
I don’t know, but I’ll find out.
· Don’t answer if you don’t know the answer.
o Owning up to not knowing gives you the opportunity to learn more and the honesty builds the trust of those around you.
There is no such thing as multitasking.
· Focus on the task at hand.
o Expectations are high, but you need to be realistic with your ability to get things done.
o Prioritize and maximize effectiveness.
Don’t forget the business.
· It’s easy to get caught up in the seemingly infinite number of tasks you have at any one time. No matter what you’re working on, never forget the end goal is to drive business for your client.
THE PROJECT STARTING LINE
· Know your client.
o Before you start, understand the industry and how you will define success.
· Agree to a strategy, budget, and timeline with your client.
o An open and well-defined line of communication is crucial for both the client and the agency to understand the process and eliminate surprises along the way.
· Take things head on.
o Don’t wait until after the project is over to bring up errors in product or budgeting. Tackle them right as they happen and negate some of the possible negative repercussions.
Aiming for the home stretch.
· No detail is too small.
o Once you’ve gone over everything, go over it again. Once you’ve gone over it twice, take out the magnifying glass and hit it a third time.
o Small errors can turn into big mistakes if you’re not careful.
· Write client recaps early and often.
o This allows you to share notes with the other teams involved and ensure that you are all on the same page.
o Make a checklist out of the client recaps to better follow through with client feedback.
Crossing the finish line.
· Lead your presentation like a good book.
o Have a defined beginning, middle and end.
· Know what to fight for and when to back off.
o There are times when you are allowed to disagree with the client. Be sure to educate, not argue and navigate this process carefully.
· Follow-up, follow-up, follow-up
o If this one doesn’t explain itself, I’d recommend getting your ticket now for the next AdU Account Management
Thanks to all of you who attended, and we look forward to seeing you again soon!