Using the Right Framework

As John Wooden, a Hall of Fame college basketball player and coach, once said, “Failure to plan is a plan for failure.” And likewise, without strong initial plans your alliances will drift aimlessly, reacting to every change that comes along. About half of all alliances break up on the rocks, mainly because of a lack of direction.

In the real world of business, the price of such failure is high. A Harvard Business School/Accenture study found that the fifteen most successful alliances added $72 billion in shareholder value over two years but that the same number of bad alliances cost companies $43 billion.4

Partnerships fail because they lack an approach to guide both sides as they work together. The number of ad hoc ...

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