Thought Leadership

What Results Do You Need From Your Strategic Partnerships? 

Quality partnerships become a strong pillar of business success when done right. When done together. Good partners create focus with clearly defined roles, transparent communication, and shared long-term goals. But despite the year-over-year increase in corporate partnerships, “the failure rate for alliances hovers between 60% and 70%,” according to Harvard Business Review

The “why” behind the lack of partnerships success is often rooted in the results both sides want out of the partnership. There’s often a misalignment there. 

So how do you get the most out of your business partners? What results should you be looking for in partnerships? Let’s discuss three core results we believe good partnerships should have for both sides. 

Drive Growth

Strategic business partnerships, when managed well, are launching pads for mutual growth. Business deals close faster and are more likely to close when partners are involved. It starts with open communication and aligning objectives about how both sides of a partnership can leverage each other’s strengths, expertise, and resources for growth objectives. 

However, it’s crucial to remember that success hinges on thoughtful planning, clear expectations, and a shared commitment to collaboration. Benefits may not always be split 50/50, but both sides need to reach a spot where they’re comfortable with the benefits they’re getting from the partnership.  

By nurturing trust and transparency, both sides can navigate challenges and achieve goals—together. 

Drive Innovation 

While individual companies can generate innovative ideas, partnerships provide a framework to efficiently translate those ideas into tangible results. One side of a partnership inevitably knows something about a subject the other doesn’t. The knowledge sharing—and mutual benefit from doing so—drives innovation on both ends.  

Nearly all tech leaders see partnerships as necessary. That’s because a good partnership combines resources, expertise, and perspectives from different areas of an industry or discipline. 

Drive Efficiency 

A core piece of every business is establishing ways work can get done more efficiently. That doesn’t mean quicker—especially if that causes quality to drop off. It means discovering ways operations get streamlined while also providing better results. Partnerships should help accomplish this.  

For instance, partnering with a talent firm can help optimize your hiring process. Connecting with a tech strategy company can help you find ways to improve your technology processes and operations. Partnering with a firm that does both finds ways to impact how quickly you hire talent and how you make them successful—all while optimizing and executing tech strategy.

Qualities of a Good Strategic Partner 

Results matter. But you get results from a partnership by having a partner with the qualities that guide these results. Here are some qualities I’ve learned that make great partnerships: 

  • Honesty/transparency: There’s nothing more important in a partnership than trust. Honesty is the root of that. Where do you add value? Where can you support and where can’t you? Evergreen is honest by being tech-agnostic—we don’t have a one-size-fits-all approach to being a partner. 
  • Self-awareness: This connects to transparency. A self-aware partner knows what it can offer and what it can’t. If you talk a big game but can’t back it up in the partnership, the relationship can fracture. 
  • Intentional: Every partnership should start with an intention. What do both sides want out of the partnership? Talk about this openly with prospective partners.  
  • Sustainable: These need to sustain for however long each side needs! When you look for a partner, will you need them for six months, when they could use your services in perpetuity? Great partnerships form when they’re mutually beneficial and can sustain amid economic headwinds and move forward in lock step. 
  • Outcome-oriented: The best partnerships create great outcomes for each other. As we’ve talked about, results are what ultimately matter. A partner that has the results for both sides at the forefront will help both sides get there. 

Connect Partnerships to Results 

Successful partnerships are connected to the results on both sides. We know partnerships can be mutually beneficial, but it takes honesty, intention, and a common understanding of results to get there. 

If partnerships were easy, two-thirds of them wouldn’t fail. But results-oriented partnerships set your organization on the path to success. 

Learn more about DJ here, and connect with him on LinkedIn.