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Saturday, April 08, 2006

Partnering: Establishing Weaknesses and Strengths

The first step in partnering is determining your strengths. You need to know what you do best, what your store enjoys, what is financially viable and what you will do in the future. When you consider these elements, make sure you won’t be partnering with someone who will be directly competitive with you either now or in the future.


Figure out what you will specialize in based on your real strength. You might choose network consulting for small dental offices, document imaging solutions for law offices or point of sale networks for restaurants. Once you’ve determined this you will know that you need to choose a partnering option that involves technology providers in your area not in direct competition with you.


You absolutely can’t establish a successful partnership with someone that offers similar services. There is nothing more terrifying for a company new to partnering than worrying that the company you choose to work with will fight you for your business.

To firmly establish non-competitive status, you need to get beyond surface knowledge of each other’s companies. They need to know what you do as much as you need to know what they do. Ask for specifics and strengths, as well as weaknesses to be sure you are seeking the best partnering opportunity.


Most companies say something similar on their business card, yellow pages ad and direct mail pieces. They typically list PC hardware, software and networking services. But it is critical when you are partnering with another company to know what their true strength is, including what they are best at and what they are known for, as well as what their prospective customers typically need.


When looking for partnering opportunities, you need a company full of very technical people. The IT consultants you work with need to be already out in the field, and also doing things you don’t or do for clients. For example, if your staff has the expertise that allows it to install servers simply but can’t handle more complex systems like Microsoft Exchange Server or SQL server, you would benefit from partnering with consultants in the are that are capable of greater complexity.

Blogged By: Computer Consulting Kit