Are your client-vendor relationships in trouble?

By 3 May 2017Blog

client-and-vendor relationships

It’s an unfortunate reality that some projects combining internal and external teams can be plagued by distrust and suspicion. When this happens, work can slow to a crawl and delivery timelines drag on and on. No one wants this, no matter who they’re working for.

This is a major obstacle for all stakeholders in a project, whether they are the client organisation, vendors or consulting teams. It impedes effectiveness and damages professional reputations all around. Fortunately, a positive cultural shift can play a significant role in resolving such issues when they arise.

Encouraging a culture of collaboration is key in mending troubled client-vendor relationships.

How can teams spot these problems before they drag a project down, and how can all parties work together to keep everything running smoothly?

You might have a project issue if

  • Different groups aren’t on the same page

Silos are a persistent problem in many organisations, especially when multiple disparate groups make up a single team. This can often arise when these groups are divided based on whether they’re internal or external parties.

When a team is siloed and noncommunicative, certain work can end up duplicated or even overlooked entirely. This sort of redundancy and shortsightedness is incredibly detrimental for all parties involved.

  • Groups set excessive requirements for one another

This is a type of posturing, one which reveals a damaging level of suspicion of other members within a team. It usually takes the form of demands such as additional reporting requirements and unnecessary processes, all ways for a well-meaning group to ensure other groups are pulling their weight and contributing.

How can teams fix these issues?

Remember, all stakeholders are genuinely invested in a project’s success.

This isn’t a problem that requires a million-dollar solution; it’s a cultural issue that can be repaired with through cultural means. The most important thing to remember is that, barring some particularly toxic and rare situations, all stakeholders are genuinely invested in a project’s success.

Keeping in mind that all groups are on board and acting in good faith, teams can improve their performance by fostering a culture that both promotes and rewards collaboration.

Organisations that have successfully overcome issues like this did so through a number of strategies like presentations on the value of cooperation and how to encourage it, meet and greets to boost camaraderie among team members, and incentive schemes to reward groups and individuals that went out of their way to help others on the team.

Mending issues with client-vendor relationships may seem difficult, but the right strategy can rapidly create efficient, performing teams. To learn more about bringing this positive change to your organisation, contact Avocado Consulting today.

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