An earlier post announced that Pursuit Software has been nominated for an award as Best Service Provider in the UK Jewellery Awards 2019. One of the most pleasing things about this is the recognition that businesses need to work with other organisations in order to be successful. The time for silo working is well past as businesses focus upon what they do best and import the specialist skills of others to complement their own work.
Here at Pursuit Software, we pride ourselves on the service we provide to our customers. While our beginnings were in the watch and jewellery business, we now supply technology solutions to a wide range of retailers, pleased to see our specialist knowledge complementing and enhancing their excellent service.
But it is not a two-way process. Just as some companies are reliant on our services to meet their own requirements, so we too have relationships with other companies that we rely on for our business to succeed.
For any relationship to flourish takes work on both sides. In this article we how we can make business partnerships flourish to the mutual benefit of both companies.
In the world of business, many people tend to be individualistic, making it hard to consider working with someone else. But partnership working is not a case of handing over control or letting a competition in on your secrets – no, this is all about networking and forming strategic alliances.
Be prepared to open your eyes to all kinds of new relationships: key customers, industry leaders, parts of the supply chain, trade associations, Chambers of Commerce, former employees – the list goes on.
There are a host of reasons for forming new business relationships. These include: saving money on shared expenses; expanding your customer base, using a partner’s expertise in a specific area; having a trusted and independent adviser; capitalising on another company’s reputation or prestige.
One way of building a relationship is to find a common interest. For example, a fashion retailer could build a relationship with a jewellery retailer; a wedding company could enter a partnership with a florist or photographer; a furniture designer might strike up a relationship with a local coffee shop – what better showcase for a new line in chairs and tables?
You might find one of your former employees has developed a range of goods that complements your business. If that employee already has a good knowledge of the way you work, and you enjoyed a good relationship during their time with you, then this could lead to a positive alliance.
Opening up your business or part of your business to an outside influence might be daunting at first but once you make the initial steps, it is like any other relationship, it is an organic process.
When contemplating working with another business, ask the following questions:
What can we package together to save money? How can we work together to expand our reach?
What resources can we offer each other?
How is this win-win for both parties?
The final point above is an important one. Nobody gets something for nothing, so it has to be a two-way process.
There is an infinite world of opportunity to be gained from working with others, it is just a case of taking the first steps. Here are just a few ideas to get the grey cells ticking:
Joint advertising campaigns
Shared marketing campaigns
Sharing a trade show stand
Co-branding promotional products
Redirecting business to each other’s websites
Forming ‘preferred supplier’ relationships
Integrating with non-competing parts of the supply chain