Skill Definition – Understanding the the market position of the chosen partner and a full understanding of why that is important to O2.
A demonstration of this ability would probably involve the following:
§ Many partnering organisations do not take enough time to critically examine the current and future market positioning of their prospective partners. This is understandable in a fast moving environment ike Telecommunications and ICT. However, there are many examples of companies who were not competitors at the outset of the relationship quickly becoming entrenched rivals, simply because of a change in strategic direction in one or the other.
§ They take the view (sometimes erroneously) that what has gone before will continue into the future. This is very often a dangerous assumption.
§ As a relationship manager you should pay attention to the market position of your prospective partners and regularly assess them for technical and commercial excellence. However, more important than this is an understanding of why that particular factor is important to O2. (See related skills around business strategy formulation and in particular Strategic Alignment).
§ It behoves every organisation to understand carefully their prospective partner market positions and the impact that such positioning has on their own operations.
§ These positions should be reassessed regularly to ensure that they have not shifted.
§ Partner positions can vary depending on theatre of operation, geography, sales line or technical product line. It is perfectly acceptable to partner with an organisation which has competing products or services. However, critcal here will be the Scope Definition and the articulation of what is and more importantly what is not ‘in scope’.