The Courage to Change: Activate Cross-Functional Partnerships

By: Gary Tubridy Chief Sales Executive Events, Revenue Growth Strategy, Sales Leadership

kingmanink_alexandergroup_couragetochange-250As organizations step up to meeting the demands of sophisticated customers, we see increased emphasis on partnership and collaboration across the marketing, sales and service “ecosystem.”

At the 2016 Chief Sales Executive Forum, a cross-functional panel of executives shared their ideas on how to activate such partnerships. Sylvia Escobar, vice president and general manager of American field operations at Agilent Technologies; Tom Davis, chief marketing officer at Forbes Media; Bill Griffin, executive vice president of field operations at Aspen Technology; and Christina Kosmowski, SVP, revenue lifecycle management & customer service at Salesforce offered the following key points:

  • Transform Sellers Into Trusted Advisors: Understand the audience. Think from the customer’s perspective first, and figure out how to help them be successful.
  • Invest in Partnerships: Bring new people to the planning table. Build new processes. Invest time to extract and leverage different (and valuable) perspectives. Create mutually beneficial “service contracts” between functions to more consistently achieve joint business goals.
  • Create an Innovation Culture: Frame a new story that aligns with the business mission. Recognize and reward innovative ideas that help achieve this mission. Don’t forget the role social media can play in harvesting such ideas.
  • Encourage Collaboration: Blend teams and create a community to bring different talent and perspectives together.

The illustration below from graphic recorder Kelly Kingman illustrates the panel presentation in a most innovative way. Enjoy!

kingmanink_alexandergroup_couragetochange-1000Don’t miss the 2017 CSE Forum Series – registration will be open soon. Reserve your spot today!

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Gary Tubridy

Gary Tubridy is a senior vice president of the Alexander Group and the general manager in charge of the firm’s management consulting business. Gary’s consulting work is focused on increasing marketing and sales effectiveness with particular emphasis in technology and medical products industries. Gary has deep expertise in diagnosing sales management issues and helping clients execute action plans to improve results. His research is focused on best practices of leading sales organizations in North America with particular emphasis on sales force transformation and the role of sales leadership. He leads the Alexander Group executive events series and hosts the Operations and Executive Forums. He is one of three founding stockholders of the Alexander Group.


Gary has been with the Alexander Group for over 35 years. Prior to that, Gary was in sales with the IBM Corporation. Gary holds a B.A. from Brown University and an MBA from the Graduate School of Business at Columbia University.


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