Strategic Account Alignment™

Become your company’s best source of revenue generation
Become your company’s best source of revenue generation

To generate more business, align with your customer’s goals

You’re in a tough spot: You’re jumping through hoops to retain your preferred supplier status, but your customer is also cutting you out of the bulk of their decision-making process. However, with the right tools, your account management team can influence your customer’s buying cycle —and become one of your company’s best sources of revenue generation.

The Strategic Account Alignment™ training program helps you generate more business from your customers. This program shifts your account management process in three key ways:

1) Collect information that’s scattered across your global offices and synthesize that data to create new customer insights
2) Build a shared vision of your customer and align your departments around this common vision
3) Collaborate with everyone who interacts with the account to execute strategies that will achieve your customer’s goals.

Talk with us about your goals, and we’ll recommend a program based on what you’re trying to achieve. Have internal trainers? We can also discuss ways we can partner with your team.

Create New Insights
Create New Insights
Collect and synthesize scattered data
Build a Shared Vision
Build a Shared Vision
Align around a shared understanding of the customer
Execute Strategies
Execute Strategies
Collaborate to achieve the customer's goals

Who Benefits from the Strategic Account Alignment™ program?

Any personnel who need to develop and implement effective strategies to grow business with their most important accounts
  • Strategic account managers
  • Senior sales professionals

Get Results with Strategic Account Alignment™

1 /

From Scattered Information to Meaningful Information

Think about all the information, knowledge and insights about your strategic accounts that exists somewhere within your organization. How much of it is in the heads of your people who interact and touch the customer every day?

Unfortunately, most of that information is scattered. It’s dispersed among all of the individuals and their organizations.

Now imagine if you could collect, organize and systematically align all of this knowledge and use it to provide unique insights for your customer. This part of the Strategic Account Alignment™ process enables you to better understand the challenges your customer is facing and help your customer address them.

Most importantly, this information is critical in enabling you to engage with your customer very early in their thinking and decision making because you understand what is happening with your customer, sometimes even better than they do.
GPT’s tools help participants shift from reactive to proactive by understanding and addressing the customer’s “big picture” and determining what they really want to achieve. Systematic proactivity is a powerful tool for increasing “customer delight."

2 /

From Silo Teams to Capture Teams

In many organizations, communication between the various groups that interact with the customer is limited. People tend to work in silos, e.g. the local delivery team focuses on local delivery.

The global account manager may be interacting with his customer contacts in different countries, but rarely gets down to the level of people who interact with the customer on a day-to-day basis.

Each person who interacts with a part of the customer organization typically reacts to the demands from the customer with no common understanding of what is needed across the customer’s global business.

Imagine if your people were able to understand both the big picture of the customer and the local day-to-day situation. This part of the Strategic Account Alignment™ process will enable everyone to align behind a common vision of the customer.

3 /

From Imposed Strategy to Capture Strategy

In many organizations, developing the strategies for the account is done almost entirely by the strategic account manager and a limited number of team members.

As a result, in the field the strategy seems to be imposed. And if the strategy is not well aligned with what is really going on in the field, there is no buy-in; the strategy is ignored and execution simply fades away.

This part of the Strategic Account Alignment™ process is where the strategy and actions are developed collaboratively. Each organization and individual who regularly interacts with the account somewhere is responsible for defining and executing their strategies and actions – in collaboration with everyone else. And the progress on these actions is reviewed and updated on a regular basis.

2 Format Options for Your Training Program

You get the ultimate in flexibility with GPT training programs. For each of our industry-leading customer relationship training programs, you can choose between two robust, complementary formats — blended or virtual.

Core knowledge and skill components are the same across both formats, and programs are delivered via: live training led by experienced facilitators (onsite and/or virtual); self-paced e-learning modules; peer coaching and optional individual coaching sessions; and individualized project work and role-play exercises tailored to real company challenges and opportunities.

 

Blended Format

Distinguished by an impressive track record of building next-generation customer relationship skills that hold the potential to transform your business, our time-tested blended training programs include both face-to-face and virtual components. Notable features of this format: Your team members are “in the room” with the instructor and fellow students. Full-day immersion. Flexibility to shift from blended mode to full virtual mode as conditions change.

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Virtual Format

Companies seeking fully virtual training options will want to explore our 100% virtual format. Virtual programs use interactive instructor-led webinars and self-service e-learning modules to lead participants on an exciting learning journey down parallel knowledge and skill tracks. Notable features: Smaller class sizes. Minimal time out of the field. Improved virtual communication skills. Convenience. Potential cost savings.

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Client Success

  • Case Study

    How an industry leader was able to increase share of accounts through global teamwork
  • Guy, Former Program Manager and Head of the Institute of Sales and Marketing

    "The program experience forces people to think outside their own area, and across the customer and our global organization. The biggest benefit from the program: the alignment and commitment of people."
  • Johan, Strategic Account Manager

    "The power of the program was to bring together the unique perspective of each member of the team on how to create value for the customer and for our organization."

Frequently Asked Questions

  • How do you “customize” the Strategic Account Alignment™ program? Who owns the customizations?

    While the proprietary toolkit used in our standard Strategic Account Alignment™ program will be similar for all clients, the experiential components are custom-written based on interviews with key members of your team to achieve the following:

    • Immediate relevance for participants – Your company’s industry niche, products, customers, sales and account management structures and culture are unique. During this program, participants will focus on their own specific strategic accounts and situations in real time, and so they will apply their new skills immediately in their jobs. And even though participants are initially practicing these new skills on a narrow set of current situations, the toolkit will be effective in any sales or account management situation they face in the future.
    • Focus on desired business outcomes – Your company goals and training priorities are also incorporated into the guidance we give your participants. For example, a program prioritizing strategic account management may be guided quite differently from a program aimed at improving operational situations. In addition to delivering on your primary outcomes, the Strategic Account Alignment™ program is certain to yield positive secondary outcomes for your company.

    While all training materials remain the property of Global Partners Training, customizations are unique and are not shared between clients. Licensed program participants retain lifetime personal use of tangible program materials for ongoing reference.

  • How is the Strategic Account Alignment™ program structured?

    Global Partners Training is ultimately focused on participants’ interpersonal skill acquisition and development, as well as direct application of skills in actual accounts. Therefore our programs make heavy use of live, interactive experiences and application of tools to real strategic accounts.

    The standard Strategic Account Alignment™ program contains a live face-to-face workshop, a series of live interactive coaching webinars and application of the skills and tools using a planning and implementation guide. This carefully blended sequence, along with measurement and certification systems, virtually guarantees the embedding of new behaviors while holding total cost to the minimum required to get the job done well.

  • How long does the Strategic Account Alignment™ program take?

    Live training time (workshops and coaching webinars) for a participant in the standard Strategic Account Alignment™ program totals approximately 26 hours, and the complete blended experience is typically spread over a two- to three-month period. This allows time for initial learning and practice, application of new skills on-the-job, iterative feedback and coaching, and demonstration of knowledge and skill acquisition with the completion of the SAA Planning Guide on a real account of each participant’s choosing.

  • How large are the training groups?

    Striking a balance between cost and personal attention, the optimal training group size is 12 and the maximum is 15. Groups larger than 15 require an additional certified facilitator to be present during each workshop. Coaching webinars are run with a maximum of 5 or 6 participants per session, and therefore multiple sessions are scheduled for each training group.

    Clients that have many physical locations with small teams in each location may opt for either smaller training groups (we suggest a minimum of 6 participants) or larger combined groups at a central location. We can help you evaluate the most efficient way to cover your desired participants.

  • Where is the program delivered and what languages are offered?

    To provide complete, consistent, turnkey service to large multi-national clients, Global Partners Training retains local facilitators in most major countries and regions and has delivered training in over 40 different countries in the past 2 years. To minimize costs, we typically deliver face-to-face workshops in your local corporate facility or at a local off-site conference facility.

    Live coaching webinars via GoToMeeting require an internet connection and, in most cases, can be joined for audio-only using a country-specific phone number. Digital program components delivered via the Carli™ app (desktop or mobile) require an Internet connection.

    While programs are delivered in English by default, experiential exercises are done in the local language of the participants. Currently, Global Partners Training has certified facilitators who speak the following languages: Dutch, English, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Mandarin, Russian, Spanish and Swedish. Other languages may be available soon, and so please check with us if you have a specific need.

    Program materials, including presentation slide decks, videos, printed and electronic materials are provided in English by default. Complete or partial translations may be available for some programs at an additional cost. Global Partners Training is continually adding to its language portfolio as training volume warrants.

  • How does the Strategic Account Alignment™ program differ from Strategic Account Management (SAM) Programs ?

    SAM programs focus almost entirely on enabling the strategic account manager to create a set of objectives, strategies and actions that he/she will execute. Research consistently shows, however, that a small percentage of such plans are implemented effectively. The Strategic Account Alignment™ program reflects the reality that a strategic account manager’s role should be to collect information and insights from everyone who interacts with someone within the strategic account. The strategic account manager then needs to align this information and insights and formulate strategies and actions that are aligned and supported by everyone involved in the account – globally. As a result, everyone involved in the account understands their role and contribution towards achieving the account objectives, and results improve significantly.

  • How is the program supported with technology?

    Global Partners Training scours the latest developments in learning technology through affiliations with training industry associations and by attending conferences such as DevLearn and ATD. As new technologies come online, we try them out and assess how they can improve the efficiency and effectiveness of the face-to-face, live remote and self-service elements of our training programs. When someone invents a better mousetrap, we will not be afraid to use it to help your participants learn.

    Program participants use our customized Carli™ app, currently supported by a Training Industry Top 20 platform company. Participants can view their training program progress, access e-learning modules and other learning resources, select their webinar sessions, and access other features via desktop and mobile app (iPhone and Android). If available for your program, this functionality is included in the program license fee during the program and for at least two full months past the date of the final live training event.

    After certification and with sponsor permission, alumni of some programs are invited to access MyGPT, a free section of the www.globalpartnerstraining.com website where they will find helpful support tools, reminder cards, articles of interest, videos, free webinars and other helpful resources customized for their particular program(s) to keep their knowledge and skills fresh.

  • How do you handle training logistics?

    Global Partners Training is equipped to handle complete project management for training on a global basis, from booking training venues to scheduling, and emailing invitations and reminders. We strive to work seamlessly with your in-house resources, such as corporate universities and travel departments to keep costs to a minimum and enable the best training experiences for participants.

    Our central point of organization for program and learning management is our customized Carli™ app, and while it does not typically make sense to fully-integrate with your internal learning management system, we can arrange to export participant certification data in any standard format.

  • My company has training resources. Can we deliver the program in-house?

    Yes, Global Partners Training offers train-the-trainer programs with complete ongoing support. While most clients prefer the flexibility of a turnkey outsourced solution, in-house delivery can work when your company has experienced trainers on staff with idle bandwidth and you are ready to make a long-term commitment to the training program.

    We will certify your trainers on the program, including experiential co-facilitation and observation-only facilitation, and provide ongoing support and updates to the program. Technology, e-learning and measurement systems are included. Please contact us if you are interested in exploring this option.

  • How much does the program cost?

    Global Partners Training strives to keep your total program cost as low as possible while delivering a complete, transformative program. Lower-cost programs without client-proven methodology, a true embedding process, proper measurement systems and a rigorous certification process are unlikely to yield the changes you are looking for.

    Please keep in mind that your total program cost includes not only Global Partners Training fees, but also the cost of salary, benefits and any travel for your participants. We would be happy to help you assess the total cost and expected return for any training program. In our experience, clients typically achieve short-term returns on the order of 3-6 times their investment, and the embedded skills of your team will continue to pay dividends for years to come.

    Global Partners Training fees are quoted after initial consultations to understand your program goals and requirements, and our fees are typically structured as follows:

    Live training event fees – Per-event per-facilitator fee for each workshop, webinar or coaching session ensures you get a certified facilitator/coach with deep executive experience, often in your industry, who speaks the local language of each training group. Scheduling and logistics support are included, as needed.

    Program license fee – Per-participant fee covers the following:

    • Lifetime personal license for proprietary, proven toolkit
    • Carli™ app, as available, accessible on desktop and mobile app (iPhone and Android) offering program tracking, assignments, program materials (PDFs, videos with unlimited replays, etc.), transcripts, webinar self-enrollment, data export and more. Access included during training and for two full months after final training event
    • Measurement system, as available, with baseline skill adoption assessment, post assessment, benchmarking, quantification, action planning, mid-term and final project collection, individual reports, group reports, aggregate region reports
    • Certification process (participants follow a strict process, in agreement with their company and in alignment with internal appraisal system, when possible, to increase engagement), printing and sending certificates, dedicated LinkedIn page or web page explaining the value of the certification
    • Alumni network and access to MyGPT web-based resource center, as available, (with resources related to the program, articles, reminder cards, videos, webinars, etc.)

    Expenses – Facilitator travel and living expenses and printing and materials costs are invoiced at actual cost (no markup or admin fee). We are happy to book travel through your corporate travel program if that is more economical.

    Translation costs – Only as needed for non-English reading/speaking groups and invoiced at cost (no markup or admin fee).

  • How will we know the training is working?

    Global Partners Training uses a state-of-the-art measurement system that operates at two levels:

    1. Assessment of skill adoption – Participants take detailed assessments at the beginning and end of each program, and their pre-training, post-training and change scores are benchmarked against a large historical training database. Participants are motivated by their own visible progress, and scores can be aggregated and analyzed at the group, division and corporate level to provide validation and insight for future training strategy.
    2. Achievement of desired business outcomes – Action plans, interim case reports and final case reports require participants to describe specific real-time customer case situations of their own choosing. In their case reports participants describe a real situation, what specific program skills they applied, the reaction of the customer, the final outcome, the relative impact of their new skills on the final outcome, and a quantitative description of the outcome – new revenue generated, time and cost savings (for the company and for the customer). Participants connect the dots between their new relationship skills and business results, releasing untapped power. Quantitative data can be aggregated to reveal new insights and calculate overall program short-term payback.
  • What does Global Partners Training do to make sure the training works?

    To heighten your chances of training success, Global Partners Training maintains rigorous certification standards, a combination of program attendance, demonstration of skills, completion of key exercises and oral presentation of a final written case report that is validated by one of our company Partners. While certification will feel like a real achievement for your individual participants who earn it, and they will proudly display their colorful certificate, we at Global Partners Training focus intently on Certification Rate as the ultimate quality metric for our own team’s performance.

    Relationship training is often more difficult and uncomfortable for participants than technical training, and our programs involve many steps. If participants are getting certified at a high rate, we can be sure our facilitators have connected well with your participants, encouraged them to follow through on attendance and assignments, and drawn out their best efforts. We can also be confident that participants have not only learned new knowledge and new skills, but that they are actively applying those skills on the job, and your company is getting the promised benefits of your training program.

    Should you choose to work with us, you will likely hear a lot about certification. We have found that an important key to participant engagement and certification is top management and local supervisory support for the program, and we will encourage you to help build that support and accountability network.

  • Why should my company invest in the Strategic Account Alignment™ program now?

    Customer expectations for their key suppliers are changing significantly and rapidly. Strategic account managers who continue to act as if their primary function is ‘relationship management’ or creating account plans are missing the most significant changes in their customers’ expectations. Customers now require (demand even) that strategic account managers constantly demonstrate their added value. They expect strategic account managers to help them address strategic and operational problems proactively. And they expect that the strategic account manager will coordinate the efforts of everyone who interacts with the account. Companies that invest in a Strategic Account Alignment™ program meet these customer expectations and differentiate themselves from competitors. As a result they reap the benefits in terms of exceptional account share and revenue growth.

Public Program
September 2020
Total Customer Focus: Public Program
Facilitated in Spanish
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