"With the partner workshop, it was amazing to see each of the individual companies who provide services directly to our end users realize the power in working together, and providing suggestions on how to improve the overall process."


Use a collaborative workshop environment to outline a partnering approach between client and vendor that is part of the client's philosophy and outsourced business model. This workshop includes key vendor-partners delegates as participants.


A natural evolution from the workshop on managing vendors (MER), the CEP workshop is expanded in its aims and content, with a particular focus on bringing client and vendor to a closer, more productive working relationship. It is typically a longer duration (up to 2 days), allowing time for greater exploration of issues and opportunities in partnering. In addition to delivery of practically oriented content, it uses structured, intensive interactive sessions with two experienced facilitators, for an audience comprising the client team's vendor managers, and key vendor delegates.


Limited preparatory reading and simple assignment is sent to all participants. Think180 consultants research and become familiar with the work outsourced to vendors, as well ask seeking feedback and input from both client and vendor participants. The workshop combines open discussion and problem solving with experienced instruction in the context, techniques and requirements of creating effective partnerships. The style is fast-paced and highly participatory, using both humor and examination of real situations to create a high-energy event. There is an emphasis on capturing agreements, actions, and items needing further attention.

For more information, see Think180 Training Methods.


Depending on feedback from preparatory discussions, the content will include:

  • Types of partnerships and requirements for effectiveness
  • Impact of different business models on relationship behaviors
  • What makes a "partnering mindset"
  • Techniques for effective negotiation and problem solving
  • Client needs, vendor needs
  • Milestones and Service Levels
  • Creating effective agreements
  • Indicators of healthy partnerships; symptoms of partnership problems
  • Individual partnership roles
  • Differences in pressures and incentives for each party


Think180's extensive material for the MER Workshop has been included and extended for the CEP workshop. This is produced in a training binder that is adapted and augmented to meet the particular needs of each client. Each participant, including each vendor delegate, receives:

  • Binder/workbook with comprehensive handout notes on topics covered
  • Templates for the RFP and selection processes
  • Tipsheets on areas most relevant to particular client needs
  • Selected book that best suits needs of company and participants

Average rating for Think180 CEP materials is 4.3 on a scale of 5.


Participants (client side and vendor side) in the workshop benefit through:

  • Immediate work value from current issues addressed at workshop
  • Greater understanding between client and vendor, and between vendors
  • Tools for better partnership management and problem resolution
  • Improved skills of managing delivery against results and specific standards
  • Specific guidance in creating effective partnering relationships


Experience indicates that CEP's overall program effectiveness increases when we

  • Contact vendors prior to workshop for input and perspective
  • Work with client's Legal/HR/Purchasing to include company procedures
  • Assess and report post-workshop implementation and impact
  • Provide follow-up support/coaching to client and vendor participants


Client receives a summary report of the workshop content and learning gains. As an option, 6-8 weeks after the course, client may request an impact and value summary. Participants then report how they have implemented learning in their work.

Go to CEP Evaluation for more details and summary of evaluations by participants.


Go to Feedback to see what clients and participants have said about this workshop.

PDF Version

Go to the PDF Library to access a PDF copy of this workshop's description.

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