Key Account Manager Interview Questions and Answers

Key Account Manager Interview Questions and Answers

This section covers commonly asked and expert level Key Account Manager Interview questions and answers. You can find conceptual, general, behavioral and experience based questions along with interesting examples and sample answers.

Who are these Key Account Manager Interview Questions useful for?

The questions presented here will be highly useful to all the freshers and experienced candidates interviewing for the role in automotive, pharmaceutical, cosmetics, investment and banking, software etc. industries.

1. Why does a company need key account manager?


A key account manager helps to develop opportunities for both the clients and the company to grow and sustain your businesses. They help to get more revenue and build a stronger relationship with clients. They also help to withstand any competition.

By having a key account manager you can:

i.) Boost customer loyalty.
ii.) Improve business relationships.
iii.) Create company awareness.
iv.) Become valued partners.
v.) Increase sales.

2. What skills would you try to see, if you were hiring a Key Account Manager?


While hiring a Key Account manager I would look for qualities that focus on the acquisition and retention of new clients. He/she must be patient but should not give into client's unreasonable demands.

While looking for a key account manager following are some of the qualities, I would pay attention to:

i.) Excellent presentation skills: A key account manager needs to be a good presenter. He/she often needs to lead a presentation on account reviews or give project updates.

ii.) Leadership skills: He/she must respect their team members. They need to be a visionary who can be calm even in tensed situation.

iii.) Excellent communication skills: They need to possess communication skills that are clear, convincing and concise.  They need to keep all the stakeholders informed on all important issues. They must know that.

iv.) Ability to see the larger picture: A key account manager needs to always look beyond closing deals. He/she needs to understand the business and must be able to see the bigger issues and resolve them in a way profitable to the client as well as their company.

v.) Relationship builder: They need to be able to understand people and connect with them. They need to develop and nurture a strong relation with the clients. This will help them with meaningful partnerships.

vi.) Result oriented: They should be the one who would take the failures as learning and would give credit to the team for success.

vii.) Achiever: They should be able to set a goal for themselves and must always try to achieve them.

viii.) Learning skills: They should find opportunities to improve themselves and should see that they are constantly growing.

ix.) Flexibility: All the plans do not execute as expected. They should be flexible and open to change, if required.

3. Acquiring a new client is one of the duties of a key account manager. What are their other duties and responsibilities?


The important duties of a key account manager are as follows:

i.) Developing and building a trustworthy relationship between the clients and the company.
ii.) Managing communication with the clients and internal teams.
iii.) Understanding the requirement of each account.
iv.) Developing a strategic plan for each account.
v.) Preparing a proper budget for each account.
vi.) Making sure that the internal budget with the company and external budget has been checked and worked on properly.
vii.) Collaborating with other teams to maximize up-selling.
viii.) Negotiating contracts with clients.
ix.) Preparing monthly reports showing the progress of each account.
x.) Providing and meeting customer requirement. Analyzing customer data to provide customer relationship management.
xi.) Working with different teams such as the sales team, designers team etc to ensure that all clients' needs are met.
xii.) Expanding relationship and managing account team assigned to each client.

Improving and increasing the current sales of the company.

4. How will you manage multiple clients at the same time?


A key account manager has to work with multiple clients at the same time. With this question, the interviewer is trying to understand how you will deal with them. They would like to see how organized you are.

To answer this question you can say something like: "I have created a spreadsheet of the different accounts I am handling. I make it a point to update and manage it daily. It keeps me well informed about the current status as well as any important information which needs to be kept in mind.

I am very confident that managing multiple clients won't be a problem for me."

5. How does purposeful listening skill help key account managers?


As the name suggests purposeful listening refers to listening with purpose. The key account manager's purpose is to get more business and strengthen the relationship with the client.

Skilled managers should know how to apply purposeful listening skills. They need to understand what they need to listen and how to use the information they hear. They can also use purposeful listening to solve the problem. They need to understand the reason and listen to details associated with the problem. They need to focus on the keywords and agree on how they can resolve the problem.

They need to listen carefully to give out the useful information required by the clients. Also, they need to use correct words to guide the client to make a sales decision and to strengthen the relationship with them.

6. Tell us about a time when you were unable to meet a goal.


As a key account manager, you need to meet your goals with a given deadline.

To answer this question, talk about a project that you failed to deliver on time and what led to the failure.  Weave it into a story. Lay emphasis on what have you learned from this situation. They would be more interested in knowing how and what approach did you have to overcome the failure.

You can say something like: "Once when we were working on a promotional campaign. The shooting was to take place in a western state but due to the opposition of local people, the law and order situation became bad and the shoot got delayed.

As the Key Account Manager, I explained it to the client and also got in touch with the local law and committee to set things in order. Ultimately we began after a week and finished the shoot.

The experience taught me that whenever the issue is sensitive, it is extremely important to take local administration and people into confidence."