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SAM Program Design, Structure and Management 

Audience: SAMs – All levels, SAM team members

Your SAMs don’t work in a vacuum. Without having the right management systems and processes in place to enable them, all the talent in the world won’t make a difference. Learn how the best companies make the business case for SAM, how they structure their SAM program and how they align the strategic account management initiative with their larger corporate objectives. Sessions will cover issues related to internal alignment, executive sponsorship, account selection and deselection, and many other universal SAM challenges.


Track Sessions

Date: 06/10/2020   |   10:00am-11:30am CST

Presenters: Jo Stewart, Worldwide Leader for Go-to-Market Enablement, Micro Focus; Tim Braman, VP of Corporate Strategy and Global Account, Revegy

Micro Focus is early in its transformation journey and is addressing some key challenges with its enterprise-selling force.

Micro Focus has evolved over a number of years through both organic innovations and the merger and acquisition of a number of technology companies in the field of enterprise software. This has resulted, as can be expected, in a varied technology stack which is still being harmonized and a number of different processes, methodologies and cultures relating to selling and sales methodology.

Micro Focus, like others in its field, is also seeing an acceleration in the shift towards more value-based selling where customers are looking for not only technologies, but best practices, recommendations and, more importantly, return on their software investments. This coupled with the hypercompetitive software market, where open source is common, software vendors are prolific and customers are constantly wanting new innovation, new pricing and new value, increases the need to focus on providing an end-to-end exemplary customer experience. This can add to complexity for a matrixed organization like Micro Focus. Alignment across multiple routes-to-market can prove a challenge internally and for the customer.

This session will discuss the challenges in consolidating multiple technologies, processes and methodologies across a worldwide go-to-market (GTM) organization with the goal of delivering a common culture and language to achieve optimal customer success and GTM productivity.

Date: 06/23/2020   |   10:00am-11:30am CST

Presenter: Danielle Matteson, Director Global Accounts, AVI-SPL

Need to create or improve your company’s SAM program? Star SAMs and program leaders often have a keen understanding of how to apply product management principles to create or enhance a world-class SAM program. In this session attendees will learn key pillars of product management discipline that can be applied to increase the probability of SAM program success, understand exclusive SAM program offering experiences that resonate with Fortune 100 customers and be shown real customer examples of how to implement and capture value from some of today’s world-renowned brands.

Like all successful systems, your new or revamped SAM program will involve thorough and strategic planning. To help ensure your program’s effectiveness, this session will cover four vital steps in the product management process, along with tools for how to apply them to your organization, and provide real-world examples of each from AVI-SPL’s journey. 

The steps include:

  • Define what problems you are trying to solve, which customers you want to serve, what your customers want, what will help you reach your business goals and what is actually doable. Basically, ask “What is product management and how can it add value to my SAM program?”
  • Create your SAM program vision by creating user stories, building business and strategic rationale for your program, selecting and qualifying accounts and prioritizing program features that resonate with customers.
  • Define your program strategy and build a business model for the people, processes, tools and measurement required to launch your program to market or refresh an existing program.
  • Build and execute on a program roadmap that includes capturing voice of the customer, automating idea management and co-creating with the customer and that meets both company goals and customer (user) needs.

Presenters: Robert Hueber, Business Unit Director, Packaging, Herrmann Ultraschall; Artur Wagner, Co-Founder & Partner, MP Consulting

This is a real-life case study of the SAM journey of the German company Herrmann Ultraschall (HU), a worldwide leading specialist for ultrasound welding technology. The session will take you from the beginning of HU’s SAM journey in 2014 until today. It will demonstrate how a comprehensive SAM program, consisting of six sequential phases, allowed HU to drive growth through organizational change and position HU as a relevant strategic partner for significantly larger customers. However, the subsequent exponential rise in expectations from its strategic accounts put significant pressure on the whole HU organization, forcing it not only to redesign its go-to-market approach, but the way all company functions support the value creation process, ultimately leading to a new organization of HU’s business units. 

The session will answer the following questions:

  • Is there a way of measuring customer-centricity and how does the type of business model influence the level of required customer-centricity?
  • Should the SAM be part of the Sales organization or should a parallel Go-To-Market organization for Strategic Accounts be established?
  • Is it worth the effort and complexity to build specific customer teams as line organizations, or would a voluntary and informal team and cooperation across regions and departments suffice?
  • How much power and authority should the SAMs have? 
  • What should the Business Unit organization look like three years from now? What is the best path from today to that future organization?
  • Beyond the formal SAM organization, how can one secure the participation of all members of a world-wide SAM-Team? Which intrinsic and extrinsic motivators can be combined? 

Level: Intermediate/Advanced

Date: 07/02/2020   |   10:00am-11:30am CST

Presenter: Presenters: Dominique Cote, Founder & CEO, Cosawi inc/sprl and Partner, The Summit Group; Kirk Dittmar, Principal, The Summit Group; Geoff Quinn, Director - Key Account Management Center of Excellence & Enablement, Pfizer Biopharmaceuticals Group; Alexandre Tremblot, VP, Group Commercial Excellence, Air Liquide; Max Walker, Director, Strategic Account Management, CVG EMEA, Medtronic

Much has been said about the challenges and values of building global centers of excellence for key account management and strategic account management as a strategic operational group within organizations. 

Each year, SAMA issues awards for new and mature SAM programs. One thing every winning company has in common is they all had an established, centralized programming office, or Center of Excellence (COE). A coincidence? We think not. 

Establishing a COE is the key success factor for implementing an effective strategic selling and strategic account management approach. Despite this fact, only 10 percent of SAMA member companies have a COE, let alone an effective one. With such a clear business opportunity, it is time to take a closer look at COEs, i.e., their challenges, benefits and key characteristics for SAM impact and success.

Presenters: Alexandre Tremblot, VP Group Excellence, Air Liquide; Alessio Arcando, Professor, Bologna Business School; Harvey Dunham, Managing Director, Business Development, SAMA

With many economists predicting an oncoming global recession, it has never been more important to know your program’s profitability – so you can protect it when your company looks to cut costs.  This executive panel will highlight their approaches to measuring the results of their strategic accounts programs.