Advice on PARTNERSHIPS & STRATEGIC ALLIANCES
For over two decades, as I have been in the business world as a business owner as well as working in large non profit organizations, as well as international corporations, as well as serving in the non-profit sector, I have learned many lessons and observed many approaches and philosophies of the ways people conduct themselves in the marketplace and when in pursuit of business.
The lessons emerged through my relationships with other business leaders, government officials, customers while performing work for them, suppliers and additional lessons have been learned as I served in churches, Christian schools and universities, and para-church ministries.
The following principles guide the development of my business actions and relationships. I&rsquove carefully searched the scriptures and confirmed the biblical accuracy of the principles. Wiser persons have already discovered similar principles and the list is surely longer than the one enclosed, but this list is born by the path I’ve traveled.
I have shared these ideas with my children, family members, friends, partners and potential partners, with the hope that they may benefit from my experiences. And now, through a series of several articles and postings, I am sharing them with you, the blogging and internet world.
I hope that you will find the content helpful, encouraging, substantial, and that it will encourage you in your own efforts to integrate and live out your Christian faith in the marketplace.
The postings cover the following 7 Key Areas:
* Part 1: The PURPOSE of a Christian owned or ran company/organization
* Part 2: Guideline for Determining Personal & Professional Pursuits
* Part 3: Thoughts on PLANNING
* Part 4: Strategies for FINANCIAL MATTERS & DECISIONS
* Part 5: Advice on PARTNERSHIPS & STRATEGIC ALLIANCES
* Part 6: How to establish and determine AGREEMENTS in business
* Part 7: PEOPLE TO AVOID in business
Partnerships & Strategic Alliances
The issue of a partners relationship to the Lord is the initiating factor for the relationship, not an auxiliary consideration.
a. I am committed to partnering with Christ-honoring Christians equally “yoked” according to II Corinthians 6:14-15.
b. I will evaluate a potential partner’s alignment with me in light of such factors as his history of business dealings with other firms, relations with other partners, the core competencies with which he’s experienced his greatest successes, his business experience, his relationship with his wife and children, etc.
c. I am aware that not all Christians are Christ-honoring. I must look at the fruit of their lives Matthew 7:16 in order to determine the depth of their commitment and the extent to which I can place trust in them.
4. I will consider utilizing the services of unsaved advisors attorneys, accountants, etc., vendors, and other associates carefully and prayerfully.
5. I recognize that many unsaved persons behave in honorable ways and perhaps the Lord brings them into my life to represent Him to them.
6. In turn, I will encourage a potential partner to evaluate my suitability and qualifications as well.
Effective partnerships are based on the presence of the skill-sets required to build and run an organization. Without adequate coverage of functional competencies, the organization will be prevented from efficient operation.
a. The partners must have complementary skill-sets.
b. A partner or strategic alliance in the training industry and myself, will share a common focus of organizational purpose and mission, and have a reasonably aligned method for accomplishing our goals Amos 3:3.
I choose not to have partners who are not inclined to seek and heed wise counsel from me and others in their areas of competence, since such persons violate the biblical admonition found in Proverbs 13:10, 11:14, and 19:20.
Effective partnerships are based on mutuality and reciprocity.
1. Mutual respect is evidenced by recognizing and trusting each other to influence an organization’s operation in one’s areas of expertise, in how we communicate, and in how we resolve areas of disagreement and conflict.
b. A leader who serves is the biblical model Matthew 20:25-28. When a partner treats another as a subordinate by “pulling rank” and minimizing another’s viewpoint in their area of expertise, such is an evidence of arrogance, and this destroys relationships. Avoid doing business with prideful men who present themselves as spiritually superior II Corinthians 1:24.
c. Leaders serve those who report to them and look out for their best interests first Philippians 2:3.
4. In my role as a contractor, in which I serve the employing firm, I am aware of whether persons who employ my services and market my products apply the “Principle of Mutuality” Ephesians” 6:5-9 Colossians 3:22-4:1. I avoid relationships where compliance with this principle is lacking.
I would love to hear your thoughts and comments.