London, United Kingdom

Strategic Client Lead

As a Strategic Client Lead of AKQA, you serve as the key business lead across a multiple client portfolio spanning £7M-£15M in annual revenue.  You seek out and deliver new and existing opportunities, partner with our clients to create ‘what’s next’, inspire our teams to deliver world-class work, and lead teams so AKQA employees have the best environment for excellence.  A Strategic Client Lead serves a key role on the London Leadership team.

As a Strategic Client Lead, you lead multi-disciplinary teams to deliver great work whilst meeting client, team, work, and commercial expectations.  You line manage the client service team within your assigned account portfolio, and serve as a x-functional client leader across the portfolio you lead.

You are accountable for driving A) best-in-class work, B) client satisfaction, C) employee engagement, and D) commercial success.

 

Key Responsibilities

 

Clients

  • Business Partner: Delight clients, foster long-term relationships. Provide senior clients and their Boards with business-transforming innovation ideas and marketing expertise. Consult on client challenges to deliver a positive difference to their bottom line via your experience, entrepreneurial mindset, and incisive thought. Leverage AKQA’s capabilities in design, storytelling, and innovation to help clients exceed growth and KPI targets.
  • Client champion: Act as the client champion across an agreed set of accounts. Grow strategic client relationships, drive key client meetings, mentor the core team and act as a final escalation point for team activity.
  • Stakeholder management: Successfully manage multiple suppliers, partners and clients to ensure best outcome for both client and AKQA. Keep stakeholders informed of project progress at all times and manage expectations proactively.

 

Work

  • Inspire the team to develop top-quality creative solutions to our clients that earn high marks for client satisfaction.
  • Work with Creative, Technology, Delivery, Planning, UX, and Data to ensure project deliverables meet deadlines, stay within estimations, and are of world-class quality.
  • Seek out and work with Creative Leadership to drive relevant recognition, awards, and PR by appropriate forums.

 

Team

  • Directly line manage or indirectly manage all client service team members within the portfolio.
  • Actively initiate programmes to train, upskill, and develop the talent on the team.
  • Partner with department leads (ie: Creative, Technology, Planning, UX, Delivery, Data Science) to align the best team configuration in order to achieve the best quality of work, while maintaining revenue targets.
  • Oversee the recruitment process of your direct client service team; work with HR for people-related items.
  • Oversee demand and capacity management, predict skill-set capacity or shortages and implement strategies to mitigate foreseen risks.
  • Foster a strong team culture and environment of excellence, professionalism, and can-do positive energy.

                                                                                                                                                                                   

Commercial Health and Growth

  • Drive the business health of the portfolio. Meet the revenue and margin targets set out by the Exec.
  • Demonstrate an in-depth understanding of wider commercial issues (e.g. credibility at CEO/CMO/CFO/COO levels). Set up processes and systems with Finance, Delivery, and Operations to maintain client profitability targets at all times. Develop, review, and maintain revenue forecasts across the portfolio.
  • Organic growth: Drive growth through systemised growth plans and regular planning sessions with clients. Ensure AKQA visibility of all major client initiatives over next 12 months (across group of accounts). Organise team resource and set out growth initiatives against which resource can be planned.
  • Business development: Leverage relationships to extend the AKQA remit within existing and new client organisations. Seeks out opportunities with related client brands. Run pitches start-to-back and convert opportunities seamlessly into AKQA.
  • Work with Finance to set rate cards, develop overall client procurement strategy and contract negotiation.

 

AKQA Competencies

 

Innovation

Seen as a transformational leader in the industry who is capable of driving change throughout an organisation. Can articulate a compelling business case and can galvanise the team to action in the face of change.  Creates an environment that challenges traditional thinking and ensures the company stays far ahead of competition and clients.

 

Service

Able to deftly manage senior client expectations to create an environment of trust, and can drive successful work outcomes while maintaining (or even growing) the relationship. Exhibits a track-record of consistent delivery of quality impactful ideas; forges strong relationships to drive successful outcomes.

 

Quality

Can set the tone for the team and believes that without the greatest work, nothing else matters.  Possesses a strong bias to action and is energised by challenges; is a visible champion of excellence and perfect delivery.

 

Thought

Develops long-term strategic partnerships that support business growth and financial success; aligns own and team objectives with overall business objectives. Identified as a leader of strategic business-impacting recommendations to clients; possesses general business savvy and expertise in the industry with a strong ability to recognise good work.   Possesses highly advanced writing skills to present a point of view, using logic, fact and a compelling storyline via any medium.  Commands the attention of the audience and can manage group dynamics during presentations to effectively engage audiences, counter objections and sell recommendations.

 

Qualifications and Experience

 

  • Prior success in business development and building, maintain client relationships
  • Experience of managing global clients
  • Comfort and experience in building, inspiring, and leading world-class teams
  • Demonstrates in-depth understanding of wider commercial issues
  • Highly competent and confident presenter
  • Possesses a strong quality of taste, in both the work and in decision-making

 

AKQA is an Equal Opportunities Employer, we believe that diversity is vital to AKQA’s ability to provide our clients with the best recommendations and are committed to fostering a varied and inclusive work environment. Your race, colour, ancestry, religion, gender, gender identity, national origin, sexual orientation, age, marital status, disability, or veteran status have no bearing on our hiring decisions. If you have a disability or special need that requires accommodation, please let us know.

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Strategic Client Lead — London

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