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GBSN Has Been Successful in Strengthening Businesses

Posted By Javier Santomá, Friday, May 18, 2007
Updated: Tuesday, January 22, 2013

I believe that GBSN has been successful in strengthening business schools of under-served markets because the Global Business School Network avoids pitfalls which have undermined some other such efforts. In particular, the "multi-school” approach to forming mentoring teams and the combination of formal commitments with benevolent individual faculty motivations set the approach apart from others.

Why have some Institutional Partnerships Stalled or not Developed in Full?

  • When money is a goal on either one or both sides. Institutional partnership is built on effort and generosity
  • When the focus is not on program participants
  • When one of the sides falls short of expectations: meeting preparations, following recommendations.
  • Changing partners frequently, or having too many. There is a certain jealousy effect
  • When lacking full support from leadership of the school. This is not a one man task.
  • Lack of ambition on either side
  • Not putting enough time into the relationship. Relationships have to be taken care of. Not keeping the partner well informed on developments. Let the partner rejoice on your successes and feel pain on your failures. Be available. Partnerships have a formal dimension and a hot-line. It is important that this line works. Faculty are busy, make sure to close agendas well in advance
  • Lack of formalization in the relationship
  • No internal selling/ communicating partnership activities
  • Not creating value for both parties, especially at the mentored institution (see tools to develop)
  • Not keeping care of personal relationships. Personal relationships involve time and effort, individuals should be taken care of. For example stranding faculty mentors at a hotel when visiting a partner institution is a sure recipe for delaying the next visit
  • When the ultimate goal of the relationship is not that the mentored institution surpasses the mentoring institutions in quality
  • Not traveling or keeping frequent contacts with the mentored institution
  • Not choosing the right people….


Javier Santomá
IESE Business School

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