By accident or design, Inside Source happened upon an industry briefing hosted by a top-tier outsource provider for ‘Third Party Intermediaries’. A superb day, excellently organised, let down only by one thing: the annoying practice of bagging analysts and advisors under the same umbrella.
As I gazed upon their contrasting characteristics, I couldn’t help but hear a David Attenborough-type voice-over run through the back of my mind:
“Steely and at some points plain ingratiating, the hyena-like analysts stalked their supplier pray in clans, tearing apart the solitary presenter, before scavenging the remnants of respect that their quivering victim could muster from the podium. ‘Call yourself a customer-centric organisation? Pah!’ taunted one hyena.
“Meanwhile, the lofty and aloof cat-like advisors meandered their way between presentations, with a clear disdain for their fellow guests and their accompanying interrogation techniques. ‘How degrading’ muttered one elegantly groomed feline, as the rest made a quiet exit when nobody was looking, slinking through the back door with barely a whip of the tail.”
Why suppliers put themselves through this torture on a bi-annual basis really does bemuse me. But the ‘Third Party Intermediaries’ umbrella for analysts and advisors is a label that amuses me more. Both have a vital but very different role to play in our industry’s eco-system; suppliers for their own benefit need to make sure they understand and address this. Different species behave very differently.