When businesses are ready to launch mission critical projects and initiatives, it is vital for them to pick the right partner to help with the process. In today’s world, organizations must focus on their core business. As a result, most companies rely on outside expertise to help them accomplish their goals. By assembling a “best in class” team, businesses are well positioned to achieve and maximize desired results.
So, what should companies consider as they begin the process to select trusted advisors to provide counsel and guidance? While the questions may vary some based upon the goals for the project, they can generally be categorized into five general areas. Please find below a list of the five key items and a brief description of each one.
- Culture: Ensuring that the cultures of the organizations are a good match for one another is very important. How businesses develop, share and analyze data can vary greatly. As a result, you want to be confident that team members can establish trust and collaborate effectively. If the cultures are not a good fit, the project will not achieve all of the desired results.
- Expertise: Picking partners that have the requisite knowledge and a demonstrated track record of success should always be a key consideration. Firms like to overwhelm prospective clients with mind numbing information about its capabilities and track record. Companies need to drill down and ask the right questions to get at the details that will illuminate the key issues before making a decision on whom to select for the engagement.
- Expectations: Discussing key objectives for the project or initiative at the beginning of the process clearly outlines what is expected by both parties for the process. It is surprising how often the client and its service provider are not in alignment as it relates to timelines, reporting and anticipated results. Establishing expectations at the beginning of the project benefits all parties.
- Capabilities: Understanding a firm’s qualifications and expertise is vital to selecting the right partner. Organizations should focus their discussions with potential service providers to thoroughly understand the background of the team members, whether all services are being provided by the firm’s employees or by outside sources, and whether the data resources being used deliver the work being requested.
- Leadership: Determining whom from the service provider’s leadership team will be working on your engagement, understanding the reputation of the firm’s senior management team as it relates to its industry sector, focusing on how the firm services its clients, and identifying roles and responsibilities for the key participants on the project team. Companies should not engage partners not committed to having its senior level team members actively engaged in a project. Your project should be treated as the most important one every time.
Anytime a business is considering the implementation of a key project or initiative, the selection of a partner and completion of upfront planning is a key determinant of how successful the project will be when implemented. There is no substitution for a creative, experienced and collaborative team. The time you invest to select the right partner is the money well spent.
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