What Triggers an Alliance Partner Escalation? Part 1

When an issue exists that is important to one of your company’s Alliance partners, these are some of the reasons why the issue will be escalated by the partner.

  • Partner perceives a lack of attention or priority to resolving their issue
      • Over promising and under delivering: Include a buffer when giving time estimates. Assume something will go wrong and build that time into the decision.
      • Not engaging the right people soon enough. The right people are necessary to provide the right information. If not included from the beginning, the wrong people are going to provide the wrong information.
      • Add a cushion of time to absorb unanticipated delays when estimating how much time until something can be delivered. Never promise an ETA without knowing what actually needs to be done to deliver.
      • Don’t promise anything that requires the work of someone else unless that person is on board with doing that work.
      •  If not explicitly set or checked for them and mutual understanding is not confirmed, Partners will naturally create their own expectations and make assumptions
         And, so, in fact, will everyone else — you, me, and especially HP!
  • If a Partner thinks a response is inappropriate (unexpected or unreasonable), it reinforces the idea that it is necessary to engage more authority in order to have problem solved.  That’s a trigger.
  • When unrecognized or mismanaged, an escalation trigger can result in an unmanaged escalation driven by inflated urgency.


A  Partner expresses concern, doubt, anger, frustration or expresses disagreement with a decision or expresses an urgency on their part AND does not receive an adequate reaction & response.

    • The right person should engage with the Partner to acknowledge what was expressed and to discover what expectation wasn’t met. If they discover the expectation was not “set” correctly or was based on a false assumption, an adjustment can be made. If the expectation was created when a commitment was made to the Partner, this person will determine what needs to happen next.


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