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Channel Development:

    As part of our sales development practice, Partners In EXCELLENCE has become one of the leading consulting firms in developing and implementing channel, partnering, and reseller strategies and programs.

    We have worked with virtually every type of channel and reseller deployment strategy including:  OEM partners, resellers, integrators, distributors, VARs, consultants/influencers, manufacturer representatives, agents, dealers, master dealers, retailers, cataloggers, and eMarketing/Internet relationships.

    We are expert in:

    • Developing the overall channel strategy.

    • Developing and executing the recruiting strategy.

    • Managing partner performance and mindshare.

    • Developing and executing channel sales and marketing programs.

    • Developing and executing channel training programs.

    • Identifying partner performance issues.

    • Developing and implementing channel metrics and performance management programs.

    • Dealing with problem partners.

    • Managing channel conflict.

    • Maximizing mindshare.

    • Conducting assessments and healthchecks.

    • Developing and implementing partner portals.

    Partnership and Alliance Health Check:

    Partnering and establishing alliances is a critical element of many organizations’ business strategies.  Organizations establish partnerships with customers, reseller/channel organization, strategic marketing partnerships, co-development relationships, or acquire other companies.

    As important as partnering is to the execution of the organization’s business strategy, 70% of partnerships and alliances fail and 23% companies do not recover their investment in their partnering efforts.

    Partnerships and alliances are difficult to manage, but when they work, they produce tremendous results for each partner.  In our research, we have found most organizations do not have a means of formally assessing the partnerships.  They do not assess attitudes and opinions of each partner and those involved in the relationship.  They do not understand where there may be problem areas.  They do not understand how to re-align interests and get the partnership back on track.

    The Partnership and Alliance Healthcheck is a tool developed by Partners In EXCELLENCE to assess opinions, attitudes, alignment, and other factors impacting the performance of a partnership.  The Healthcheck has 3 elements:

    • A basic assessment/survey using questions based on best practices in developing and managing partnerships and alliances.
    • A customized assessment/survey using questions that are unique to the goals and objectives of the partnership.
    • An executive review/workshop on the issues identified in the Healthcheck.

    The  survey is administered over the web.  The executive sponsors, people from both organizations, and people directly involved in the partnership are asked about their opinions and attitudes about the relationship.  They are asked to identify strengths, weaknesses, and other factors critical to achieving the objectives of the partnership.

    The results of the Healthcheck are summarized in a detailed report and presented to the management and project team.  The review session includes a structured workshop in which the team identifies establishes actions, priorities, and milestones addressing the critical issues identified in the Healthcheck.

    The Partnership and Alliance Healthcheck can be administered quickly at a very low investment.  The basic assessment for a joint partnership/alliance team of up to 15 people can be implemented within 5 business days for $3795.

    For information on the Healthcheck and a sample assessment report please contact Partners

     

    Partner Performance Matrix:

    The effectiveness of the distribution channel is one of the most critical issues facing sales and marketing management.  Sales and channel managers are constantly evaluating performance of each partner and each program, tuning them to produce better results. 

    Today, a “one size fits all” approach to channel management and development will not produce results effectively.  Money will be wasted on programs or partners that will not produce the required ROI. 

    New tools are required to help organization measure the performance of each partner, assuring partners are producing results aligned with their potential.

    The Partner Performance Matrix is a tool to help executives better understand the performance, strengths and weaknesses of channel partners.  It provides the basis for making decisions and taking action on improving channel performance and ROI from each channel partner.

    Text Box: Top 20%
Text Box: Middle 70%
Text Box: Bottom 10%

    The Partner Performance Matrix evaluates partner performance against potential.  In implementing the Partner Performance Matrix, we have found it useful to develop it at several levels:

    • Individual sales professional:  We assess the potential/performance of each sales professional with each partner, identifying strengths/weaknesses, ranking them within their firm and within the channel.

    • Partner performance:  Assess the potential/performance of each partner, identifying strengths/weaknesses, ranking them within the channel.

    • Performance/potential dimensions:  There are many dimensions to the assessment of potential and performance.  In performing an assessment, elements can include actual sales performance, market/customer penetration and share, product sales performance, new customer acquisition, sales skills, market understanding/composition, sales skills, and many other elements.  A complete snapshot of the skills, potential, and performance of each sales professional and each firm can be obtained.

    Driving Partner Performance And Results:

    The Partner Performance Matrix provides the starting point in making decisions and taking action on improving performance in the channel.  It helps address issues like:

    • Partner business planning:  Using a fact and data based approach, partner managers create real value add in developing business and performance plans to improve the partner’s business and performance.  Business planning can be focused on specific strengths, weaknesses, partner needs and business strategies.  Both the manufacturer and partner no longer waste time on areas that are meaningless, but now focus on those areas that produce the best results.

    • Improved partner resource utilization:  Rather than “inflicting” new programs on everyone in the partner organization, investments can be focused on those professionals that best fit.  For example, within the partner, some sales people will be stronger in selling certain product lines than others.  New products introductions can be focused on those sales people.  Likewise, specific improvement programs can be offered to those sales people that are weaker.

    • High impact product/program introductions:  “In the old days,” training, materials, demos/samples, marketing funds and other items would be allocated to everyone in the channel.  This consumed resources, time and money on the part of the manufacturer and the partner.  Today, no one can afford to invest in everyone–not each partner–not each sales person within the partner.  Programs must be tuned to those partners that will produce the best results for the resources and funds available.

    • Improved partner investment decisions:  Investing company resources, time and funds on partners must create a real return.  Without strong data on the performance and potential of each partner, it is impossible to make decisions on which partners to invest in.  Moving beyond tiered programs, the Partner Performance Matrix helps identify those partners in which further investments should be made, what investments will create the greatest return, and where no investments should be made.  The Partner Performance Matrix enables the manufacturer to understand the ROI produced by each program with each partner.

    • Channel/Partner quality improvements:  Channel partners are an extension of the manufacturer.  They can improve the positioning, image and reputation of the manufacturer, or they can damage it severely.  The Partner Performance Assessment provides data to help identify those partners that may be creating problems, identify specific problem areas, and help in correcting these problems.  It will also help the manufacturer prune the channel, creating stronger more powerful alliances.

    Getting Started, Developing The Partner Performance Matrix:

    Partners In EXCELLENCE helps manufacturers develop and implement the Partner Performance Matrix.  Programs conducted include:

    • The Partner Performance Workshop:  This workshop introduces the concept and principles in developing the Partner Performance Matrix.  It provides the tools and techniques necessary for a company to measure the performance and potential of each partner, mapping these in the Performance Matrix.  It shows how the results can be used to improve the performance of each partner in the channel.  This workshop is structured as a one day program.

    • Partner Performance Assessment:  Partners In EXCELLENCE conducts an assessment of each partner (and each sales professional within the partner) developing the data on the performance and potential.  Reports and performance assessments are provided for each partner, identifying strengths, weaknesses, strategies for improvement, and other recommendations.  In addition to the Partner Performance Matrix, an overall Partner Management Dashboard is provided to help provide better tools for managing and improving the result produced within the channel.  Each performance assessment is customized to the specific performance and potential criteria important to the manufacturer.

    • Performance Planning And Improvement:  Partners In EXCELLENCE will work with channel manager and partners in developing specific action plans to produce the results expected.  We will work in developing and implementing the action plans suggested by the assessment.

    • Custom Channel Development Program:  The Partner Performance Matrix can be used in designing, developing, and implementing new channel programs, product introduction programs, recruiting new channel partners, and other areas.  Partners In EXCELLENCE can help in developing and implementing these programs.

    For more information on developing the Partner Performance Matrix,