When Should You Start Developing a “Relationship” . . . .(Video Blog)

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 . . . .  with your trading partners (either your customers or suppliers)?  Many believe that the relationship begins AFTER the contract is signed.  In other words, it is OK to be adversarial throughout the selling / buying and contracting process (dating / pre-marriage) and then switch to collaborative after the deal is signed (the marriage).  When you think about it in those terms, the notion is ridiculous. To illustrate the issue, here is a video that we love to use in our Relationship Management training. 

While the examples are funny (and extreme) to illustrate the point, they are typical behaviors we see with both buyers and sellers.  The sad part is that we still believe that those behaviors are OK pre-marriage / contract and can be “taken back” after the contract is signed. The point here is that you need to start developing a relationship at the beginning of the process.  Anything other than that, is destroying VALUE and can potentially have an irrevocable impact on how you work together going forward.

If you see yourself, your staff, your colleagues or your trading partners’ behaviors in this video, take a step back and reevaluate.  If the goal is to be a Customer or Supplier of Choice (if that is not your goal, it should be) then adjust your approach accordingly.  As Dalip pointed out in his last blog, there is a “cost” associated with bad trading relationships and it is NOT insignificant.  Make 2016 the year you put better relationships at the top of your list.

Let us know what you think and join in the conversation . . . . . .


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Anne has been leading consulting and financial management organizations for over 25 years. She has extensive expertise in Strategic Sourcing, change management, contracting & contract management (both the buy side and sell side) organizational design and supply chain management. Anne has a passion for collaborating and educating her clients while helping them to uncover hidden value in their organizations. In addition, Anne has been named by Supply & Demand Chain Executive as a “Top 100 Provider Pro to Know” every year since 2007 and a 2013 Top Female Supply Chain executive.

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  1. Pingback: Did You Ever Wonder What the Other Side Thinks..? - News You Can Use

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