Trust is the absolute foundation of all relationships; it is unequivocally the most critical element of success for your company and all of your partnerships. Real economic gains will be realized for organizations that embody high levels of trust.
The term “strategy” is arguably the most overused word in business.
A growth opportunity that is largly overlooked by companies is the long-term play. When companies commit to leveraging strategic partnerships in order to grow their company, they open a whole new world of opportunities. In these strategic cases, the Partner Development Leader (PDL) is used in a range of capacities to uncover and execute strategies that unlock prospects for exponential growth. Partner Development Leaders, whether they are revenue generating or operations focused, share the same skillset. They are strategic-minded, competitive, opportunistic, and absolute ninjas at forging symbiotic relationships.
To quote Stephen Covey, I also recommend to, “begin with the end in mind.” When it is all said and done, we choose to enter into strategic partnerships so that we are better positioned to achieve results that will help our organization prosper. Without meaningful results, no business, no partnership, and no relationship will sustain.
Esprit de corps is French and it means “for the spirit of the group; or, to feel enthusiasm, devotion, and a sense of responsibility for the welfare of a group.” Having a strong sense of commitment to the cause is an absolute imperative for strategic partnership success. So what does the word commitment mean? According to Heidi Reeder, Associate Professor at Boise State University and the author of Commit To Win, commitment is the experience of being psychologically attached to something and intending to continue.
Does the simple word “negotiate” make your blood pressure jump a few points? Well, if you are like most people, the answer is YES. In today’s business culture, the vast majority of people see a negotiation as a zero sum interaction. That is, they see the process of negotiating as a way to get what you want, but at the other party’s expense.
Business Service Management (BSM) is a booming segment of business right now. IBM and other “big data” companies are working diligently to offer sophisticated systems that provide vital performance data both within companies as well as to partnering organizations. It has been said that you cannot manage what you cannot measure. For this reason, it is critical that each party discusses and agrees on specific key performance indicators (KPIs) that will be measured and communicated to key stakeholders.
By definition, when we engage a company and make them our strategic partner, we become dependent upon their performance. That is, our partner’s ability to deliver on tasks and goals will have a direct effect on our ability to deliver on tasks and goals. This interdependence is one of several reasons why transparency is critical to long-term partnership success.
From a business perspective, alignment, or congruence as it is sometimes referred, of people is an imperative element for long-term success. As business leaders work to develop their companies over time, they must seek out others who naturally share similar views and philosophies on business and life. Alignment of vision, mission, and core values is critical to minimize costly turnover and to maximize the speed of accomplishing company goals.
I am a big fan of Stephen Covey, and I believe in his recommendation to “begin with the end in mind.” As we embark on the prospects of a new business-to-business partnership, building a successful relationship is our end goal. Before we start this exciting, yet precarious journey, we need to understand the potential landmines that exist. Better yet, we need to intimately understand the success characteristics that we must proactively create in order to maximize our likelihood of success.