Alliance Competence: Maximizing the Value of Your Partnerships. Robert E. Spekman, Lynn A. Isabella. Wiley.

Alliance Competence: Maximizing the Value of Your Partnerships Book Cover Alliance Competence: Maximizing the Value of Your Partnerships
Robert E. Spekman, Lynn A. Isabella
December 28, 1999

Dell computers revolutionized the PC market when the company formed an alliance between Intel and FedEx. Through this partnership, Dell was able to mass-customize and deliver computers faster than most of its competitors.

With monthly losses around $1 million, USAir decided to join forces with British Airways. Through this alliance, USAir became a global player in the airline industry, and gave both companies the ability to save millions in annual costs by incorporating joint purchasing of services, fuel, aircraft, and more.

Strategic alliances are becoming more and more central to the viability of the company. These alliances are pervasive throughout the corporate landscape and have a big impact on the way business is conducted across the globe. Written by strategy experts from the University of Virginia’s prestigious Darden School, alliance competence combines the latest research and case studies to explore the key aspects necessary to develop a successful alliance.

Enhanced by a five-year study of global companies, this book offers unique insights about building the foundations of alliance competence. These competencies provide firms with a source of sustainable competitive advantage that will help them compete more successfully in global markets. Through actual “war stories” the problems and challenges that alliances tend to face are revealed, as well as concrete suggestions for managing through the evolutionary cycle.

After examining all the research available, the authors introduce a process they’ve developed called The No Blame Review (NBR). This collaborative, nonjudgmental process helps alliances constructively confront times when the line seems off track. The NBR creates an objective, nonthreatening, and non-value-laden opportunity for alliance managers and strategic sponsors on both sides to raise, investigate, and review serious issues. It allows partners to check the alliance’s vital signs and to make a determination that all systems are in alignment. This process provides the most positive approach to conflict resolution.

The inside, real-world examples, and research featured in Alliance Competence will give you the tools and diagnostics necessary for locating potential allies in creating a successful alliance.

Robert E. Spekman, PhD, is a professor of business administration at the University of Virginia’s Darden School. He has written or edited six books, including The Portable MBA, Third Edition, also from Wiley.

Lynn A. Isabella, PhD, is an associate professor of business Administration at The Darden School. Her articles have appeared in Harvard Business Review, Academy of Management Journal, and Organizational Dynamics.

Thomas C. McAvoy, PhD, is the professor emeritus of business administration at The Darden School. Previously, he was vice chairman and COO of Corning, Inc.