Being a Strategic Business Partner:

   Earning a place at the table

Why this course?

This program is for people in all the support functions of the organization, such as HR, IT, Finance, Internal Audit, and Compliance. Rising demands and expectations of business leaders and changes in technology have redefined the role of these support functions. While excellent customer service and responsiveness continue to be baseline expectations for these professionals, they must become skilled at working with the business units as true strategic business partners, using their expertise in a variety of ways to add value to the organization’s results.  

This new role requires that professionals learn state-of-the-art tools to solve problems and improve the performance of individuals, teams, departments, business units, and the organization as a whole. This workshop is designed to equip your staff for this more extensive role.


What makes us different?

We customize this training to meet the specific needs of your organization.

AlexanderHancock has provided this training in a number of environments: finance, internal audit, systems design, operations, Human Resources, quality, engineering, and many other support functions. Participants in this workshop develop the capabilities needed to effectively collaborate with and influence business partners in a consultative relationship. They will adapt to a new understanding of the role of the strategic business partner and will gain the tools and strategic conversation skills needed to diagnose needs and collaborate with business partners to implement solutions. The training emphasizes hands-on practice with real-life scenarios.

What are the benefits to your organization?

A skilled group of strategic business partners with a better understanding of their roles can help your organization achieve the following benefits:

  • Greater credibility as partners who add real value to the process
  • Enhanced ability to influence business unit leaders to make good business decisions
  • More creative and innovative solutions to organizational problems through the integration of technical expertise and business expertise
  • Problems are addressed earlier through identification of potential gaps or barriers to business success
  • More effective and efficient use of resources through partnerships and joint efforts
  • More effectively planned and implemented process improvements and organizational changes
  • Improved alignment with organizational goals

What will participants learn?

Participants will:

  • understand what a strategic business partner is and does, and the implications for their job
  • build credibility as a strategic business partner with clients
  • be able to ask questions and clarify client requests to respond appropriately to the business need underlying the client’s requests
  • be able to use a variety of tools and techniques to analyze client needs, problems, and business opportunities
  • be able to use a gap analysis to solve problems and to identify the improvement needs for a process, a specific role, a team, a department, or the whole organization
  • use system thinking tools to help clients identify downstream impacts of various potential options
  • know how to select appropriate solutions to meet the client’s needs and get client buy-in
  • know how to use a business-case approach to influence decisions that are good for the whole organization
  • learn how to negotiate effective, mutually agreeable solutions

How does the course work?

Strategic Business Partner is an customized, intensive, hands-on learning experience that results in changed behavior. As a result of this training, participants report that they have more effective conversations with their business partners. Our unique video-lab approach allows each participant to practice addressing their own real-life situations, not off-the-shelf case studies.

Before the workshop, each participant will create three scenarios based on their own experiences with business partners, thus ensuring that their practices are relevant and immediately useful.

We also will survey their business partners before the course and again nine to 12 months later to determine the perceived quality of the services that participants’ teams provide.

  • Typically, Strategic Business Partner is 16 hours.
  • More than 2/3 of this time is spent in small groups in three video labs that incorporate practice, coaching, and feedback.
  • Each lab group has four participants and one coach/facilitator.
  • Each video session covers a different kind of strategic conversation with their internal clients. These conversations can be customized to the client’s needs and integrated into the organization’s culture and current practices.

How will the skills be sustained?

Sustaining the skills entails collaboration on the part of the participants, their managers, and the organization. We can offer strategies to support all three and can work with you to select and implement strategies to ensure sustainable success.

Want to learn more?

To learn more about how Strategic Business Partner can help improve the quality of the solutions your internal-support groups provide to other groups within your organization, call or email us at 704-892-5097 or