Whitepapers & Articles
Partnering and building alliances is the preferred model of business growth for many CEO’s. In the IBM 2012 CEO Study, 70% of CEOs plan to partner extensively and indeed the top performers among those CEO’s do just that. Partnering leverages the expertise, resources, and talent beyond the walls of a single organization. But what are the crucial ingredients for collaboration success? Download
Which Metrics Matter
When you ask an alliance manager which metrics matter, more often than not you will hear some version of “revenue, revenue, and revenue.” Yet many businesses have moved to a more holistic view of measuring value. The balanced scorecard has been widely adopted as a method of looking at not only financials, but strategic, tactical, and operational performance, as well as intangibles that contribute to the capacity to generate value. A single metric cannot give you the insight necessary to manage all the ingredients required to sustain a successful alliance. Companies that manage successful alliances tend to measure performance in multiple dimensions and high performing alliances tend to track certain metrics that non-performers do not.
Partner Health Diagnostic – Enabling Transformation
The ultimate goal of a diagnostic is to improve alliance relationships and performance by acting on objective feedback. Responses to the survey can open an actionable discussion on how to improve alliance performance and can ultimately lead to a transformation in your alliance.
Strategic Innovation Partnering: The Internet of Everything
There Is a Convergence of Technologies that is reshaping our world, yet there is not one word or phrase that captures it all. A colleague of mine coined the acronym COMBS, which decodes into Cloud, Open, Mobile, Big data, and Social. Some call this a “perfect storm” of technologies. But the impact of this storm is not limited to the world of IT. The real story is how this technology is enabling innovation across many industries and forging nontraditional alliances between technology companies and industry leaders.
Technology vendors have become increasingly dependent upon the channel to take products to market; 65% of technology alliances leverage the channels in their go to market strategy. Even more impressive is that high-performing alliances leverage channels more frequently than their low-performing counterparts. But with the 'Cloud' on the horizon, it is not altogether clear how the channel will weather the storm.
In order to optimize your Return on Relationship, you must understand how you are creating value for customers, your partner, as well as for your organization. We have conducted research into hundreds of alliances through client engagements with companies such as Cisco, Adobe, PayPal, and IBM. In our case study research, we compared the value propositions of very successful alliances and those that yielded disappointing results. We found that successful alliances tracked partner value in three dimensions: Solution, Financial, and Sales.
Getting sales reps to leverage the power of an alliance is the last mile in sell-with alliances - those that focus on driving revenue and it is by far the most treacherous mile. Seasoned alliance managers reveal their experiences regarding what works and what doesn't to get these alliances across the finish line in delivering revenue through collaboartive selling.
Cross Sector Innovation and the Role of Alliances
The California Chapter of the Association of Strategic Alliance Professionals held their annual Alliance Executive Roundtable on January 13, 2011. The meeting, hosted by Google on their Mountain View Campus, was attended by twenty‐four of the area’s most senior alliance leaders representing a cross‐section of the business community. Participants voiced their views on the discussion topic of: Cross Sector Innovation and the Role of Alliances.
The group explored the role alliance managers play in creating new opportunities through innovation across non‐traditional industries such as high tech with healthcare, construction and energy. Special guest, Steve White, Program Director for the IDC Software Alliances Leadership Council, shared IDC’s 2011 outlook for IDC and shared some of the trends and predictions.
Alliance Strategy for Challenging Times
At a time of economic contraction, budget cut backs, and job reductions, many organizations cut very deep into their alliance and partnering capability. Yet Cisco made the decision to maintain and even modestly increase their investment in strategic alliance partnerships and saw greater business productivity, access to new markets and new sources of revenue as a result.
Effective Executive Sponsorship
Strong and effective executive sponsorship is critical to alliance success. Executive sponsorship begins at the top with the CEO who sets the example in supporting partner relationships.
(download 79KB PDF)
Optimizing Partner Investments
Partner Surveys can reveal the strengths and weaknesses in your program and help you make fact-based decisions on where to invest.
(download 114KB PDF)
Building Win-Win-Win Value Propositions:
The Key to Sustainable Partnerships
Successful go-to-market alliances start with a compelling JOINT value proposition, one that addresses the customer buying motivations first. Creating value propositions for all stakeholders in the partnership creates not just a WIN-WIN partnership, but a WIN-WIN-WIN where the customer wins, too. Customer value ultimately translates into value for the partners in creating new products or services and new sales opportunities.
(download 71KB PDF)
Build, Buy, Partner: Speed your time to Market
Product marketing, management and development departments have pressure from all sides to add competitive differentiation to product, fill in product line gaps and offer a complete solution to customers. Product groups have three strategies they can choose from to solve these issues: Build products or components from scratch, buy components, product, product lines or companies, or partner with companies to meet these product development needs.
(download 287KB PDF)
Ramp to Results
Published in IDC Software Business Strategies, July 2002
The advantage of partnering is that it creates leverage. A company can extend its own capabilities with far less up-front investment in time, headcount, and dollars than it would take to build these capabilities in-house. By pro-actively managing the partner development lifecycle, partner managers can accelerate partner performance.
(download 41KB PDF)