It is not just a question of who or what you can live with; it is a question of where can you be a, or even the, significant other. Moving from a lessor/asset led market to a consignee/market led asset, deeper diligence is required to find that meaningful relationship.
Looks can be important, but how long do looks alone last? What are the deeper, more fundamental things you look for? How do you become the significant other? You are not the only one out there, so if it will be a ménage a trois (ou plus 😊), how are you going to make sure that your needs are met?
Your experience of potential partners is, of course, in the bank. You can determine your ability to trust them as a company, their position as technical experts on your asset type, and their commercial reach, so what can you control beyond that?
Having established that a date makes sense, but before spending a lot of time dancing, how do you establish that an optimum engagement is on the cards?
Investigate. Asking critical questions will achieve a more profound understanding of the platform from which you will be working for the next three to five years. Questions like; What assets of the same type is the consignee managing? What program(s) is the consignee supporting that utilises your material? What is the nature of those programs? There are many questions of this nature, depending on what your context is.
You may not get first preference across all dynamics if your partner likes polyamorous relationships, so how do you make sure you get fair play? We will come to that in the edition on Contracting Plus, but this is where win-win positions need to be thought through.
Elucidate. Clear expectations in terms of your minimum value expectations and over what time period is something to be framed early and fairly. It is vital that you do not encourage your potential consignee partner to overpitch what they can do for you in the little reality they have.
Getting clear expectations back from your partner in terms of what they see as a reasonable target is critical as it allows you to align your upward reporting at the earliest possible point. This is an area that you can also exercise another element of control though minimal model validation, which we also speak about later in this series. There are several areas of communication like this one that will have a significant impact on performance.
Formulate. Finally, and critically, ensuring that you and they have aligned reporting systems. It will be around these reporting systems that you communicate upwards and, again critically, use to achieve detailed performance analysis and align actions to optimise. What measures do you have to have, and what data streams are going to drive performance? These can be high maintenance and a significant resource pull if not aligned.
Through Mirror Partnering, you can establish early in the process the potential partners with whom your time is best spent. Once established you can get down to the serious business of having your needs met – and who knows, maybe you would get more from polyamorous relationships yourself 😊. Next article, we will do just that when we deal with Minimal Model Validation – your next area of critical control.
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