This was the first time I visited Chicago in the summer, and it was stunning. I think it’s the most beautiful city in the US when it is not cold. Unfortunately, that’s only 3 months a year; I was told.DemandFarm was honored to be a sponsor of SAMA 2016, and I was delighted to be representing DemandFarm at the event.
The gathering of a few hundred SAM (Strategic Account Management) practitioners was exciting because of the opportunity it gave me to learn more about a subject I care deeply about. And I was not disappointed.I feel like I along with our small team at Strategic Account Management Association was able to connect some critical dots in our journey of building DemandFarm as the best possible enabling software for Strategic and Key Account Managers.
Here are top three lessons I learnt
- Strategic Account Management is all about co-creating value for your customers. It sounds great and is true. But how do you quantify that ‘value’? We concluded that while some of it can be quantified, there is also undeniably ‘soft/intangible’ impact. We are now thinking ‘how we can make DemandFarm capture both aspects of value creation’?
- I have often come across this smirk accompanied by ‘Oh! You can’t have software for SAM/KAM’. This is partly true. At SAMA this year, I kept my eyes, ears, and mind open for more on this ‘art-science’ debate. If a phenomenon can be explained with math equations (algorithms), then sure, we can build key account management software. If it is only art (esoteric and mysterious), there may not be any point in bothering with software - the only the human mind can interpret it, and that too in myriad ways. But what if it is in the middle (heuristics)? Many of the world’s phenomena fall in the middle category. I think it depends on which side it tilts to. Our thinking at DemandFarm where we want to ‘enable’ SAMs was fortified with this insight. We will definitely be exploring more of this in future builds.
- The last lesson is that Chicago is beautiful in summer.