Hi! I’m Abby. I’ve been in a client focused role for around 5 years now. Going from account manager to sales manager. But, about 3 months ago I made a drastic leap from the world of recruitment to the world of digital marketing and web. Having managed the marketing and sales of my previous company… queue joke about Peep Show’s Project Zeus. I thought I was pretty well equipped for the move but boy, was I in for a shock. Luckily there are a few transferable skills that made the transition smoother. I wanted to share the best five with you here.
Customer liaising skills
Luckily for me, pretty much every industry has an end consumer – the customer. Whether this is B2B or B2C all companies have a target audience. I often refer jokingly to my role as a client filter. I take any service a company offers then make it consumable/understandable/appealing to customers.
This could translate to:
- Breaking the news to a client in recruitment that their temporary employee isn’t turning up. In a way that is apologetic.
- Explaining to a digital customer how we fixed their website in a way that is knowledgeable yet easy to understand.
Being able to converse with customers is a transferable skill for any industry.
This is a pretty generic one, but, if you have ever worked in an agency environment you’ll understand the importance of organisation. This is not exclusive to agencies, this can be a problem in all industries. You aren’t just working for your company, you’re working for every single one of your clients. You are the newest vital member of their team.
In my case, that is 70 clients. 70 teams to be a part of and ensure their work is being done to an excellent standard and on time. You can imagine the chaos in my mind 24/7. Without a to-do list, I’d be lost. Looking for ways to improve? My favourite tool is Trello for all time management needs.
Being able to communicate with a variety of people is essential. Especially in an account management role. You never know who your next new client is going to be. They could be a marketing manager, CEO, certain age, gender, background or location so you need to be able to adapt to who you’re talking to. In a digital agency, you can talk to people with lots of different knowledge levels. You need to know how to explain without over-explaining.
Have a personality, people buy from people after all, but be adaptable. Want to test your communication skills? Check out this online quiz.
As mentioned in the above point, people buy from people. A personality is something you can take from employer to employer. Everyone is completely individual so some clients might not like you but some will love you. Those relationships are what makes a customer, a returning customer.
Fact-finding seems a basic skill to have but it’s another one that can be used across a variety of industries. In recruitment, it was important to find out as much information as possible about a project/job before sending a member of staff out. What will they be expected to do day-to-day, how long are they needed, what hours will they be working, the list goes on and on.
In a digital agency, this skill can be applied across many platforms. For example, when we are starting a web project for a client I have to find out as much about the project as possible. Ensuring we quote accurately and to manage client expectations.
The moral of the story being is that if you are looking for a career change or even an industry change – you never underestimate the power of your transferable skills. No matter what age you are or how long you’ve been in an industry, they may win you that dream job. If that dream job happens to lead you to Fifteen, it would be really handy if we had a career page.