Archive for the ‘contact management’ Tag

Traveling and Meeting People – Good for Alliances – Surprisingly So   Leave a comment

So much, so obvious: alliances are a relationship business, and meeting in person strengthen relationships.
What is surprising?

Let’s start from the beginning: to make the most of precious traveling, I have sought friends and fellow alliances colleagues in my latest trips.

I have refreshed and strengthened personal relations, including with:

  • Alliances colleagues I have known online and first met in person thanks to these very trips,
  • Colleagues turned into friends that I had last seen 15 years ago
  • Persons that provided services to my company, that I am befriending and together we just thought up some activity together that it will be nice and rewarding even to try, let alone actually do!
  • Former colleagues who did my very same job few years ago and shared invaluable experiences on how similar and how different is what they do now. For some of them, I feel like what I do has changed more than what they do.

It has been an invaluable development experience for me. What has made this especially significant for alliances?

First, each and every person I met was surprised by this approach. Of course, positive surprise makes meetings and relations warmer and more useful.
Here is a reminder of the value of innovation and of personal touch. And a reminder that innovation is sometimes very, very simple and stems from applying very basic principles – such as my doing justice to the value of travel.

Second, in addition to strengthened relationships, these meetings generated new business insight and opportunity that just was absent from our minds before we met.
I take this as a testament to the value of alliances, defined as professional management of relationships to pursue value that derives from how the entities in the relationship complement each other. However simple, however small, this has been alliances management, and has created tangible value alongside the intangible pleasure of  bonding.

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Focus Helps Effective Social Networking   Leave a comment

The world of alliances, more than a few other businesses, gives plenty of opportunity to obtain, then seek to cultivate, more and more contacts.
Add online social networking, and you may well find yourself on a slippery slope towards collecting contacts for the sake of contacts, like stamps or PEZ boxes.
Yes, I have been there, and there were many of us. I have moved on since, and quite a few have yet to do the same.

Months ago, Lou Dubois published this valuable summary of how to make your social networking effective. As all good summaries, it articulates in one convenient place many good known points.

Plus, I found one new, powerful tool for focused networking: its classification of contacts in five categories.
The five definitions are easy to apply, with tangible criteria that make immediate sense. Most importantly, mapping my contacts to these categories makes it very easy to see how to gauge what they mean, and what I likely mean for them.

This drives a strong case in favour of keeping your contact network streamlined. A welcome support of what I had earlier experimented with streamlining my LinkedIn network.

As chance would have it, my experience and this article were just two days apart, even as it took me until today (and a useful twit by @FrancineAllaire) to connect them.

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