What is a strategic sparring partner?
A strategic sparring partner is someone you trust, who is able to step in your shoes given their first hand business experience and who understands the strategic context of your organisation. You can reflect on challenges and bounce off ideas and strategies to overcome them. A strategic sparring partner will challenge your thinking, ask some tough questions and help you get to the core of the issues. A good sparring partner will even help you clarify your role in the situation by holding up the mirror for you and showing you your blind spots.
Why work with a sparring partner?
It gets lonely at the top and sometimes there is just no one you can turn to to discuss confidential topics and brainstorm various options and strategies.
To get an external perspective can give help you gain new insights on a current issue, have a sanity check or gain more clarity. And sometimes when you can’t see the forest for the trees any more it helps to have someone challenge you to take the chainsaw to the to do list to reset priorities.
Finally, it is beneficial to work through a difficult process or a business transformation with a sparring partner.
Who uses a strategic sparring partner?
In our experience it is especially board members, CEOs, Managing Directors or Managing Partners who benefit most as they hold the ultimate responsibility for the organisation which is a privilege but sometimes also burden they have to carry alone. But also GMs, COOs, CFO and HRDs can benefit from a sounding board.