We helped to identify the root causes of the challenges that were holding back the pace and effectiveness of the strategic oncology alliance, with a specific focus around streamlining governance, accelerating decision making, and building trust between the alliance partners.

How can you drive a fast-paced alliance while meeting the internal governance needs of each partner?

Our clients were two global biopharmaceutical companies jointly developing andÔÇ»commercialising a transformative new class of oncology therapeutics. This alliance was accelerating rapidly but certain areas were driving friction, particularly governance. Their challenges included overcoming ‘300% governance’ across both the alliance and each partner’s internal mechanisms. We were approached to identify the root causes and develop practical solutions to help them reach their ambitious goals. 

Simplifying governance and building trust to accelerate alliance decision-making

We spent time developing a deep understanding of the issues facing the alliance, working closely with the teams to observe their real-life challenges. This included mapping out the path for strategic decision-making – including one case where 36 governance interactions were required to reach a decision! 

Our recommendations focused on two critical, linked areas: 

  • Defining more agile ways of working that avoided ‘300% governance’  
  • Reducing interactions, delegating decision-making and establishing clearer guardrails between both partners 
  • Agreeing a shared culture values and behaviours that speak to all in the alliance 
  • Going beyond each partners’ individual values, to build trust and enable accelerated decision-making by assuming positive intent and having a clear, ‘critical few’ behaviours to hold people’s way of working to account as needed 

From complexity and confusion, to confident and accelerated delivery

At the start of our work, there was scepticism about whether it would be possible to course-correct an alliance so deep into delivery of dozens of clinical studies with a rapidly scaling commercial ambition. However, by bringing together team members across both partners to co-create and prioritise solutions, we helped introduce practical fixes that have helped enable the alliance to exceed expectations. Crucially, we also helped rebuild trust between the partners and set up the next decade of their powerful collaboration.  

Find out more about our work supporting powerful pharma partnerships, or get in touch with our Josh Elliott to discuss how we can help you. 

"The change champions sessions have really helped to drive collaboration and make teams on both sides of the alliance feel like they are part of finding solutions"

Senior Director, Oncology Alliance Partner

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