Seven Elements of Successful Strategic Alliances
Strategic alliances deliver results when fundamentals are applied, as adopted by the Conference Board
from this survey of US., European and Asian Corporations for the Conference Board. (Conference Board reports 1168-96-CH and 1028)
Find the Strategic Fit For Alliance's Success- Alliances must involve
organizations whose strategies are complementary. If not, no amount of
management effort will create success.
Understand Favorable Factors- Identify the favorable factors that make the alliance
feasible: e.g. the cost/benefit analysis is positive; the alliance concerns
R&D, production or certain marketing ventures; the alliance starts out small
and builds on trust.
Identify Possible Impediments- Be aware of the impediments to successful
negotiations including conflicts over strategic motives, time horizons, or
Conduct Productive Negotiations- Negotiations are more effective when internal
political support is widespread throughout the company, operating managers
are involved early, and divisive topics are sent to higher level negotiation
Create the Correct Authority Structure- Control of a strategic alliance requires
careful selection and authority for a governing group, an executive
committee, and a senior manager (or management team).
Know When and How to Terminate- To foster success, the terms for
termination should not be specified in great detail. Mistrust results from
placing too much effort on legal protection.
Institutionalize Alliance Skills One of Two Ways- Recognize the way that
your organization can best institutionalize alliance skills:
-- When The Culture Supports Collaboration- Many organizations reward
collaboration. In this case, disseminate knowledge from those experienced in
alliances to those seeking to learn about alliances. There is no need for
-- When The Culture Opposes Collaboration- Human tendency supports hierarchical
cultures which can diminish the ability to institutionalize alliance skills. In these instances,
it's best to incorporate the alliance practices into existing organizational practices rather than
introduce them as a new approach.