WT Business Beat

By Nick Wakeman

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Another lesson from the Top 100

That teaming is important is nothing new in the government market but how companies approach each other and when is evolving.

For a company like Dell Inc., the idea of teaming is not one that the company led with a few years ago. But read their profile and you'll see a company that's embracing partners. They are even hiring people such as Max Peterson, formerly of CDW-G. He will run their civilian business. The company knows that to keep winning business they need partners.

In the run-up to the Top 100, I had the chance to talk to Bruce Klein of Cisco Systems Inc. Cisco is dedicated to selling through partners and always has been. It doesn't land on the Top 100 because nearly all of its work is through partners. But even that strategy has evolved over the last few years, as Klein described it.

Increasingly, Cisco is getting involved with prime contracting partners long before a specific RFP is on the street. The idea is to build an offering around a particular need that multiple customers may have and then to go to those customers and say, here's what we can do for you to solve your problem.

It's a simple concept, and it points to one of the major themes of this year's Top 100 -- to succeed you must know your customers, what problems they have, what issues keep them up at night, etc. Neat technology isn't enough.

Posted by Nick Wakeman on May 18, 2007 at 7:22 PM


Reader Comments

Wed, Jun 6, 2007 M Amtower HIGHLAND MD

Max was a great choice for Dell if they wanted a person who can deliver sales - AND just about everyone likes and respects - AND who has a good history of teaming for win-win. As the cycle of large contracts comtinues, teaming, partnering and sub-contracting will become even more important. For those less sophisticated in this, more education will be required to avoid disappointment.

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