The Making of a Great Account Manager: Turning Training on its Head with ‘Do and Learn’

Webgains’ progressive ‘Do and Learn’ training program puts creative marketing and a high level of numeracy center stage.

Developed in collaboration with Compaso, Webgains’ training and development program is built around the truth that people learn more effectively by doing. According to research conducted by the Center for Creative Leadership, just 10% of what people understand comes from classroom or manual-based training. Seventy percent comes through learning by doing and 20% through learning from others. It’s only right that we implement a training program that focuses on doing things like matching publishers with a brand’s target audience and financial modelling for a hypothetical publisher. This is a training scheme which goes beyond reading and manuals, and asks account managers to learn through execution.

Do and Learn in action

Undertaken in teams, the Webgains academy consists of six challenges all designed to hone the key skills needed for great account management. The first challenge, Let’s go into Publishing asks account managers to devise their own publisher business. Concepts proposed include an augmented reality mobile app to locate high street sales, as well as an app allowing users to identify and purchase fashion items seen on TV. Throughout the challenge, account managers are expected to scope out the commercial viability and at the same time ensure it has the potential to deliver an appropriate ROI for advertisers. Meanwhile the eBay Millionaires task sees teams given £50 to invest in a purchase with the aim of making as much profit as possible within four weeks of eBay trading.

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Hosted within Compaso’s cloud-based platform, each task has a video introduction from one of the team. There’s an added element of competition injected into the mix with the addition of an Academy leader board with points awarded to teams for their performance in each task. Financial projections, commercial pitching, and gap analysis are all skills account managers will need to get to grips with if they want to emerge victorious.

We know that even the best account managers need support to fine tune their approach and deliver thoughtful account management. In partnership with Compaso, we developed a program where the emphasis is on execution and ROI rather than traditional training. We don’t believe traditional ‘training’ benefits our people and we certainly don’t believe it benefits our clients. The point of the Webgains Academy is to turn learning on its head.

Read The Making of a Great Account Manager: Account Management at its Best
Read The Making of a Great Account Manager: Sharing Insights for Learning at the Speed of Change