Using the Power of Positive Influence to Bridge Differences and Drive Alliance Value

The most successful alliances operate as one team, bridging differences in corporate strategy, structure, culture, and processes. They create a North Star shared vision and align on joint alliance goals. Overcoming these differences to find an alliance way of working–a third way–requires using influence to align stakeholders at all levels, internally and with the partner(s). Capitalizing on differences to maximize value and promote innovation takes planning, skill, and social capital. It is one of the most tangible and valuable services alliance professionals provide to their stakeholders.

This Master Class offers proven frameworks to think about and approach situations where the partners have fundamentally different approaches to how they achieve their mutual objectives. It might be that they have different philosophies about and experiences with drug development and commercialization processes; they may have very different risk tolerances, or perhaps there are underlying divergent interests that can result in suboptimizing alliance value. Participants will analyze a fictitious but very real case study to apply the frameworks while learning from each other.

You will learn:


Jan Twombly, CSAP
President, The Rhythm of Business
Board Director, Association of Strategic Alliance Professionals (ASAP)

Jan Twombly, Certified Strategic Alliance Professional (CSAP), is president of The Rhythm of Business, a service provider with core expertise in strategic alliances, alliance management, and collaboration. For more than 20 years, she has been developing and sharing thought leadership to enable success through partnering and alliances.

Twombly is a trusted advisor to leaders in both industry and academia, helping to develop their organizations' partnering and alliance strategies and operations. She offers education, training, and mentoring services to build the mindset, skillset, and toolset needed to succeed. Her clients count on her to advise on establishing new alliances, to develop alliance management organizations and practices, and to step in when alliances are in trouble. Data-driven, contextual assessments of complex alliances provide deep insights that solve problems and drive measurable improvement. Digitizing workflow helps alliance managers scale and optimize their work.

She serves on the Board of Directors of the Association of Strategic Alliance Professionals (ASAP), overseeing their editorial and content strategy. She is a frequent contributor to Strategic Alliance Quarterly, regularly speaks on collaboration and partnering, and authors The Partnering Guide blog and numerous whitepapers at

Jeffrey C. Shuman, CSAP, PhD
Principal, The Rhythm of Business
Professor Emeritus of Management, Bentley University

Jeff is an educator and trusted advisor to executives who are building, leading, and managing alliances and partner networks. His mix of operational, consulting, research and classroom experiences allow him to blend the theoretical with the practical, providing useful, easily implementable and repeatable advice.

At The Rhythm of Business he partners with global companies in multiple industries to advance their alliance and collaboration management capability. Consulting engagements focus on driving results through enabling all functions of the business to work effectively with their partners throughout the lifecycle. He works with senior executive teams to shape partnering strategy, enable operational and organization readiness, and implement overarching governance. Partnering professionals benefit from his ability to quickly diagnose underperforming alliances, and accelerate the path to profitability. Customized education and training bring alliance and collaboration skills to all who interact with partners.

Jeff has been a member of ASAP since 2002. He was involved on the teams that developed the Certificate of Achievement – Alliance Management (CA-AM) certification and the CSAP certification and contributed to The ASAP Handbook of Alliance Management. He frequently presents at ASAP and other organization's conferences and events. Together with business partner Jan Twombly, he has a rich history of developing and publishing strategic and practical thinking that advances the art and science of partnering and alliance management.