7. Pick the “Just-Right” Team for the Job: Sometimes clients over-project job complexity to justify why only a superman will do. Of course, you would like the best and the most experienced people to work on your project. However, the guiding principle should be to assess the right skills required for the job using the same yardstick as you would in your own organization.
8. Foster a “One Team” Mindset: Communicate, Communicate, Communicate! Have no walls between the teams. If you throw specifications over the wall, then you are bound to get spaghetti code in return. Involve the partner team from the conceptualization stage, and communicate disconnects openly and early for better results.
To develop a two-way communication culture create standards for availability and acknowledgement, build a team collaboration space, isolate issues from people, and keep the team well-informed about the progress and future requirements. This will help you in building a partner that feels empowered in a “no-surprises” culture.
9. Insist on a Knowledge Management Ecosystem: Check if the partner has a strong knowledge management foundation and processes for ideas-reuse. A well-defined system for knowledge harvesting will help maintain business continuity, and more importantly, be the bedrock for future innovation.
10. Integrity is Non-Negotiable: Taking care of IP protection and maintaining data security are a given, but you must also assess the honesty, transparency, and ethics of the company and its people. If integrity is a part of the DNA of the partner, then you can be sure of long-term success.
So, how do you know you’ve created a deal that survives the players? You will know that you are doing well when both sides contribute to each other’s success; trust is recognized as an active ingredient; there is a sense of equality in the way the relationship is created; and both sides think it is important to make each other commercially successful.
Salil Godika is the general manager of Marketing at MindTree Consulting, an international IT and R&D services company with development centers in India and the U.S.