This book is a joint effort from S4 Consulting, Inc. and Miller Heiman, Inc.
S4 Consulting, a leading-edge relationship management firm, has helped business-to-business clients use strategic account management to improve their business performance since 1986. S4 Consulting uniquely focuses on gaining the internal firmwide commitment and support that are so critical for the success of strategic account management. Huge benefits occur when sales and other departments work together more effectively, when interdepartmental barriers are lowered, and when everyone is headed in roughly the same direction.
Information S4 Consulting personnel have gathered and processed from interviews with thousands of strategic account contacts helps us better guide companies to optimize those relationships. This outside-in approach can pay huge dividends. S4 Consulting's commitment to using strategic account management to improve business performance, has led us to design, conduct, and co-sponsor SAMA's annual Strategic Account Management Performance Award for the USA. Many of the case studies in this book are from nominees and recipients of that award.
Miller Heiman, a leading developer and provider of sales development solutions for sales organizations and professionals around the world since 1978, has made building exceptional sales organizations its single-most important accomplishment. The Miller Heiman team of consultants has helped more than one million sales professionals use the right strategies and tactics to win business and turn prospects into customers for life. Miller Heiman has pioneered several highly respected sales process programs, including Strategic Selling , Conceptual Selling , Large Account Management Processsm, and Negotiate Successsm.
Both firms are committed to helping companies improve their bottom-line performance by effectively managing their customer assets. A book focused on strategic account management seemed a natural topic for collaboration.
Because people seem to learn best from comparing what works with what doesn't, each chapter includes examples of both. The firms cited as positive examples have verified the facts describing their cases. We have disguised the negative examples by creating composite cases: for each example of what doesn't work, there are 5 to 10 more cases with similar situations.