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All for One: 10 Strategies for Building Trusted Client Partnerships by Andrew Sobel

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1

Reaching Level 6: Trusted Client Partner

This book describes the 10 essential strategies that are required to build long-term, institutional client relationships—what I call trusted client partnerships. These partnerships are broad and deep, and they are characterized by many-to-many relationships at multiple levels. They usually endure for years. They account for a small percentage of most firms' client relationships, but they contribute a disproportionately large share of their growth, profits, and intellectual capital. They can be hugely beneficial to clients, and often result in greater value, lower risk, and faster execution. You need them in good times, but even more so in tough times. The 10 strategies that I introduce in the coming chapters are largely the result of an extensive study I have conducted of large, institutional client relationships; they also reflect my personal experiences in building senior executive relationships during my 28-year career in management consulting.

What exactly is a trusted client partnership? Let's define this term by first examining two striking but typical examples.

Citigroup and Royal Dutch Shell

Less than 10 years ago, the idea of having Royal Dutch Shell as a major client was little more than a gleam in the eyes of the top executives of Citigroup's Global Corporate Bank. Today, Shell is one of Citigroup's largest worldwide clients. Citigroup has built a network of relationships with dozens of Shell executives around the world and ...

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