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The job role account executive covers various descriptions depending on the specific industry.

In IT organizations, an account executives {AE) is a senior management role, responsible for executing large (50 mln +) contracts. Control of the Profit & Loss (P&L) is one of the main activities, together with customer alignment on a senior level. Usually an AE has one or more Account Managers (AM) in his/her staff, to cover the various towers a large contract is mainly build of. These AM's on their turn, directly or indirectly control the program- and project managers performing the actual job. For very large contracts (1 bln +), 600 + people could be involved in contract execution.

In an ideal situation, at the end of a contract life cycle, the AE and part of the staff will be involved in new contract negociations. This could be for the same account or for a new customer. Once the contract is signed, the AE and staff will be directly up to speed. However, practice shows this situation will only be achieved one out of five times average.


In the advertising industry, account executives are the second-lowest-ranking members of the client service department, outranking only entry-level account coordinators. The word "executive" here means to "execute" - that is they are mostly responsible for more practical parts of the advertising jobs (ie leaflets, distributions, adaptations of materials from different languages etc). They answer to the respective account supervisor and/or to the client service director/account director. That depends on the country and on the account you are working for. In Spain for example, an account executive could probably develop very important campaigns on his/her own.

References

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