Creating and Managing Strategic Alliances

Develop strong alliance capabilities

Just as the rewards of strategic alliances are many, so are the options and their associated legal, financial and operational implications. In a world of constrained resources and intense competition, the challenge of developing strategically focused, cooperative relationships lies in designing and managing them to create value and knowing and mitigating the factors that can result in alliance failures.

In this highly collaborative program guided by senior Kellogg faculty, you’ll learn how to create and manage a variety of strategic alliances, both domestic and international, including joint ventures, licensing agreements, buyer-supplier partnerships and consortia. You’ll examine the specific conditions under which alliances are preferred to other growth strategies, develop a better sense of the related costs and benefits, and leave with practical tools you can apply immediately.

Incentives available for groups and teams of four or more attending open enrollment programs. Learn more

Edward Zajac / Academic Director

Who Should Attend

  • Mid- and upper-level managers involved in creating or implementing strategic alliances
  • Individuals with responsibility for business development, strategic planning, marketing and strategic alliance operations
  • Legal, accounting and management consulting professionals engaged with firms involved in or considering strategic alliances
  • Federal Government managers seeking to gain new perspectives for managing strategic partnerships

Download Past Participant Profile

Key Benefits

  • Analyze and determine when to make, buy or ally
  • Create and manage value-adding alliances
  • Avoid common pitfalls that can lead to alliance failures
  • Negotiate before, during and after alliance agreements have been signed
  • Anticipate critical legal, financial and operational issues in alliances
  • Manage complex, multiple alliance initiatives within your organization

Program Content

Promises and Pitfalls of Alliances

  • Evaluate risks and returns
  • Avoid alliance failure factors
  • Increase the probability of successful alliances
  • Address the challenge of cooperation among large numbers of partners

Make, Buy or Ally

  • Know when to use alliances as a business development vehicle
  • Protect your company’s interests strategically and contractually
  • Detect when your partner has a win/lose orientation
  • Understand the role of alliances in the network economy

Alliance Decisions and Capabilities

  • Change your status from vendor to partner
  • Develop an alliance capability across the organization
  • Structure an alliance for organizational learning
  • Create alliances within an organization
  • Improve alliance management capabilities

Economic and Governance Issues

  • Deal with cultural differences in alliances, especially in emerging economies
  • Map competitors’ alliances
  • Implement a framework for stakeholder analysis

Analyzing and Designing Joint Ventures

  • Discuss strategic and operational considerations
  • Anticipate critical legal, accounting and financial issues
  • Find value in cooperation
  • Anticipate conflict and instability when your company has multiple alliances


Edward Zajac - Academic Director; James F. Bere Professor of Management & Organizations

What Participants Say

“This is perhaps one of the best courses on strategy around the globe. The interactions, the case studies and the lectures were truly insightful and helped me gain a deep understanding of managing alliances and partnerships in diverse scenarios.”
Global Head of Channel Partner Programs – Central Marketing Excellence, Philips Lighting Amsterdam

"For people new to this concept - [this is] an excellent [program] to gain the right foundation on alliance creation and management. The instructors were wonderful, energetic, and knowledgeable. You will learn from the diverse experience of participants as well.”
Senior Group Leader, Mondelez International, Inc.

“This program provided great insights and frameworks that will be critical to growing our alliances.”
CMO, Caesar's Entertainment

Personal Consultation

Please contact us to schedule an advising session

2024 Session

September 29 - October 3, 2024

Start: September 29 at 8:30 AM

End: October 3 at 11:45 AM

Format: Live Virtual Program

All times are in CT. Live virtual consists of half-day morning sessions.


2025 Session

September 29 - October 3, 2025

Start: September 29 at 8:30 AM

End: October 3 at 11:45 AM

Format: Live Virtual Program

All times are in CT. Live virtual consists of half-day morning sessions.


Kellogg School of Management

James L. Allen Center
2169 Campus Drive, Evanston, IL 60208