Consulting room: Will you be my wing man?
- 16 March, 2011 17:28
Many things in life need to be done as a team. Take hockey for example. Not everyone can be in the goals and not everyone can be the half back or wing. The team needs to work together to compliment the skills of each other to finally drive the ball through and score a goal. Life is full of situations where teams are required and IT is no exception.
We often try to protect our little patch and attempt, in vain, to be everything to our clients. We endeavour to do it alone and try to control everything bolted into the IT infrastructure. The first thing we all need to learn is that we can’t be everything to everyone. We can’t have all the required skills, the required experience, or the right frame of mind. Not everyone can work with people, work with numbers, work in solitude or work with software. Not everyone can understand accounting, programming, server hardware and client support.
We all fall short, but there is an answer. A unified approach. Partnering.
Often two or more companies can coexist providing the one solution to the client. Two halves of the same coin.
When you review your biggest business costs, it invariably comes down to staff, project planning and training. If you look at the business drivers around you and your clients, then analyse what exactly is winning you your business, it can be a complex formulae. It can mean variable solutions, multiple issues solved with various products, multiple skill sets and often additional niche or boutique solutions.
Can one business support all of this with their own resources? Can one business forge the single coin? We would all like to think so, but then reality sinks in and it comes down to the bottom line. A way to reduce the costs is by sharing the burden.
Often the right partnership means on time project delivery, maintaining margins at a level you are happy with and having access to more resources including trained staff and product support. Ultimately, you are happy, your client is happy and your business is in a better position. You might even discover your new IT partners can make use of you in other projects they are working on.
Throughout the world, companies have been saving costs with outsourcing. Whilst this has been working, I put it to you that many clients of these businesses are not happy and are looking for alternative vendors.
If in place of this, you filled the gap with partnerships and relationships then you are not outsourcing or contracting someone to fill your gap. Both partner businesses have a vested interest in the client and both want to provide the best possible solution to the client. I can’t think of a better way to grow a business, than with positive references and referrals.
In my role as the APAC Chairman for Global IT Community Association (GITCA) I want to help you partner with others.
Please email me at email@example.com, if you have a successful partnership story or would like to know more.