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I love this description. This is a classic problem in organizations. People are convinced that as long as individual components are running well ("efficiently"), the whole machine is running well. So, each component gets its own measure, and they optimize to that measure. But when those measures have no connection to the overall performance, it is only luck when things work out well.

Donal O'Shea

If the purchasing people have their way with the contract price, there is no room for the 'vendor' to provide extra help in unforseen circumstances - except at a loss to themselves. In the IT business it is almost always imposible to develop an all-encompassing contract. The result is tht failure - at least strained relationships - are built in up front.

Greg Krauska

Jeffrey, your example illustrates a problem that occurs on both sides of many negotiations: people focus on what they can get (or lose) at the point of the transaction. Close the deal, see what you can get out of the other side.

How different are our results when we view the exchange of value across the entire life of the relationship?

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