Friday, October 30, 2015

November is about Managing your External Relationships: Don't get it wrong

The November AppsJack Business Conversation is about Managing External Relationships.  Start thinking about how this area affects your life and business.  In October, the topic was Risk, Compliance, and Resiliency (RCR).  On Tuesday, I met with Dave, Corey, Todd, and Thomas and we discussed RCR over food and drinks.  The December topic is Develop and Manage Business Capabilities and then in January we return to our Operating Processes, starting with Developing Vision and Strategy.

Like the other 12 business practice areas, Managing External Relationships is a fascinating and important topic to me.  APQC says that this practice area is about managing relationships and communications for your: Investors, Government, Industry, Board of Directors, Advisors, Friends and Family and your Public Relations program.  I totally agree.  And I think there are a lot of other stakeholders to consider as well such as employees.  The real question is: what is external, and what is internal?

Internal relationships are those with your trusted advisors and core teams whereas external communications are with all others.  As leaders we must be very strategic and intentional about our external relationships.

I find this area to be quite similar to Stakeholder Management and Communication Management in PMBOK.

Here are some thoughts from me on the various areas in the case of my business:

Investors.  I don't have those yet but would like to get them.

Government.  Sigh.  Those guys.  City, State, Feds.  Not fun but you have to keep up with them.  You need a plan and practice to comply with, communicate with and pay these folks.

Industry.  In my case I am in the tech and business services industries.  I do my meetup to keep up with the industry and I read a lot to keep up with tech.

Boards.  My board of directors is currently non-existent.

Friends and family.  This is more of a personal comment.  I know in my life, I have to continue to focus on this topic to find balance, help, support and value.

Your customers.  What's more important than those who pay you?

Your employees.  What's more important than those who supply your customers?

Your suppliers.  What's more important than those who supply you?

Other stakeholders.  Who else do you need to consider?

PR Program.  The public relations program is the plan I said above.

Some questions to consider this month.  Please feel free to write in with your thoughts:

  • What 
    • do you find 
      • interesting / challenging 
        • about this managing external relationships?  
    • else 
      • do you see 
        • as part of this area?  
    • questions or issues 
      • come up for you
        • about this topic? 
    • help
      • do you need or want
        • with this topic?

  • How 
    • do you 
      • practice this area?
    • does this area affect 
      • your business? 
      • your workday?
      • your life?
How do you manage and think about your external relationships?