Founded in 1964, the Strategic Account Management Association (SAMA) is a non-profit association, which focuses only on establishing Key Account Management as an individual line of work and an established business strategy.
SAMA has a worldwide membership of around 8,000; which is inclusive of the world’s leading companies and most modern thought leaders in the field of strategic customer relationship management. There are several ways in which SAMA helps these professionals transition to a strategic account program.
The Strategic Account Management Association also aids in bringing your key account program to the next level. It helps the professionals in excelling in their global account management initiative.
The Strategic Account Management Association gives out numerous training each year. It also conducts several events for professional growth and networking all through North America and Europe annually. SAMA works towards bringing the two worlds of the theory and the practice closer. It provides customized training, individual and group program evaluation, unique training and networking events, and dynamic benchmarking for the strategic account management professional and the SAM organization.
The Association is also into research and development. In addition to world-class research, the Strategic Account Management Association is involved with publications and other knowledge resources.
Strategic Account Management Association gathers and circulates information on relevant best practices. Information on the latest innovations from the world’s best strategic customer management programs is shared within the community.
One of the major publications of SAMA is Velocity magazine. The magazine covers in-depth articles of interest to the strategic account management profession. Issues enclose columns by thought-leaders; reviews of exciting SAM-related material; the most recent research; theory and case studies. The magazine also has actionable content on cutting-edge topics pertinent to SAM practitioners.
SAMA runs an online resource center to share proprietary research, articles, books and case studies and media resources covering the various areas of SAM. This online community is extremely helpful keeping the Strategic Account Management key personnel on the same page with the upcoming and innovative ideas and researches.
Along with an online resource center, the Strategic Account Management Association also hosts webinars wherein experienced subject-matter experts and SAM practitioners give live presentations on SAM subjects and their proven best practices.
The SAMA Academy runs eight exhaustive workshops. These workshops are conducted with the purpose of growing knowledge in strategic account management. These workshops are offered either individually or in combination with others. The focus of these workshops is on core strategic account management skill–building.
The CSAM (Certified Strategic Account Manager) Program by the Strategic Account Management Association establishes a professional standard of individual capabilities to successfully perform the role and responsibilities of a strategic account manager (SAM).
Strategic Account Managers needs to establish themselves as valuable assets to their clients. Strategic Account Managers work with the clients to develop strategies for achieving their goals. They are given the responsibility of supporting and maintaining the company’s most important business relationships. To be valuable strategic partner there are some core skills required. While variations exist across different businesses and industries for SAM role requirements, a vital set of core competencies and knowledge related to them is similar in a majority of companies for strategic customer leadership. The certification helps in raising the overall competency of employees, establishing a standard of excellence, and also in carving a desirable career path for the SAM position. Once SAMA’s Certification Program is completed the Certified Strategic Account Manager (CSAM) designation is awarded to the candidate.
The Strategic Account Management Association offers two kinds of membership:
Strategic Account Management is not SALES!
Successful SAMs hugely impact business outcomes and the bottom line. Strategic customer management does not rest exclusively on the talent of the strategic account manager. The whole organization has an important role to play to smooth the progress of and hold up the SAM process and hence to acquire superior business results.
Understanding the characteristics of strategic accounts and the function of the strategic account manager is critical to implementing a successful SAM program within an organization. The Strategic Account Management Association works to gather and disseminate SAM program best practices to enable their members and corporate member companies to achieve their goals.