Account Supervisor: Succeeding In A Crucial Role
The role of account supervisor is one of the most crucial in a public relations-communications agency. Here’s what account supervisors should focus on to succeed in one of the most critical steps in a communications professional’s career.
The Shift From Managing Oneself To Managing A Team. In the initial arc of an agency career, it’s mostly about one’s own assignments and getting support from lower level team members. But this is where “stuff gets real.” The account supervisor is now managing an entire account and an entire team. It’s a big step.
The Shift From Managing To Leading. Until now, the professional was managing processes, such basics as publicity, content, social/digital, personal timelines, one’s pieces of the account production schedule, and parts of budgets. Much of it is about getting the train out of the station on time. But now the account supervisor is leading people, or starting to do so. And that’s an entirely different matter. This is when leadership skillslike building trust, active listening, inspiring others, and demonstrating bravery come to the foreground.
It’s About Letting Go. It’s at this time in one’s career that one’s delegating skills are tested, and those skills best be strong. But delegation is both an art and a science, and most agencies don’t really train their new account supervisor how to do it effectively. Doesn’t make sense, does it?
It’s About Holding On. Now’s when the supervisor learns that although they’ve let go and delegated some work away, they are still ultimately responsible for its delivery, at the agency’s level of quality, and on time.
Managing Up Becomes More Important. That wasn’t a typo. As one fits into this new role, and tries different account management and people leadership techniques, having a supportive boss is more important than ever. And the best way for the new account supervisor to bring out the best in their boss is to hone one’s managing up skills.
What challenges do your new account supervisors have? Do your account supervisors need help to enhance their management and leadership skills? If so, I offer an Account Supervisors Boot Camp for recently appointed and soon-to-be account supervisors. Please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you’d like to learn more.