Powerful partnerships for the digital generation

Modern romance: powerful partnerships for the digital generation

It’s Valentine’s day again, a day to celebrate love, romance and partnership of every kind. While every love story is unique, there is a very specific kind of relationship that we want to turn our attention to today, one that we’ve seen repeated again and again throughout history. Still  going strong in the digital era, it’s those very powerful, collaborative partnerships that successfully bring together real innovation and creativity that we’re talking about.

Looking at the apps and devices we use in our everyday lives at work and at home, it is interesting to note how often a marriage of kindred creative spirits lies behind the innovative technology. It is these partnerships that result in a technology-based whole greater than the sum of the two halves.

To illustrate what we mean, we thought we’d spend a moment reflecting on a handful of these superstar marriages of innovation. In no particular order here are our top 5 great love affairs of the digital age that really showcase what can be achieved when two become one:-

LEGO & Star Wars

In the late 1990s, the bricks of the LEGO enterprise were crumbling around them. They were losing marketshare to electronic toys and becoming increasingly irrelevant in a competitive global marketplace of demanding little consumers (AKA kids). A deal with Lucas Films in 1999 changed all of that. Originally opposed by the existing board, who felt the very name was at odds with the company’s anti-war principles, LEGO founder’s grandson argued successfully that they should acquire the rights to represent the Star Wars universe of characters and stories.  With the Force on their side, LEGO have been propelled to the position of world’s No.3 toymaker.

Marc Benioff & Parker Harris

Marc Benioff and Parker Harris started Salesforce out of Benioff’s San Francisco garage. Legend has it that it was while Benioff was swimming with dolphin in Hawaii, he had a vision of a cloud-based enterprise solution with an Amazon-style tabbed browser. Parker Harris took his mystical brief and built Salesforce overnight. Like all great love stories, this version of the platform’s genesis possibly owes more to romance than reality. It is true however that Parker and Marc are still happily partnered to this day and continue to grow the Salesforce family of products.

Sir Jonathan Ive & Apple Inc.

Mention the great Apple partnership of our time and you’d be forgiven for imagining that this was Wozniak and Jobs. However, it was the love affair between Brit ‘Jony’ Ive and Apple Inc. that truly bore fruit. After becoming frustrated in his design role at Tangerine, Ive made the move to Apple Inc. in 1990. Over the following decades, he and Jobs developed a close working relationship and rapport that enabled Ive to design the next generation of Apple devices, with Jobs placing design at the heart of his product strategy. Receiving a knighthood in 2012 for services to design and enterprise was the cherry on top.

Disney & Pixar

The love affair between the two studios was made legit when Disney acquired the smaller studio, Pixar, in 2006. Disney’s hope was that their new young partner would bring with them the animation magic that had produced hits such as Toy Story and Finding Nemo, while restoring their former glory as the animation king of the movie world. Disney has indeed blossomed in this partnership (e.g. has anyone not seen Frozen?) while Pixar seems to have a lost a little of their sparkle. 

Aérospatiale and the British Aircraft Corporation

Born of an Anglo-French treaty, between Aérospatiale and the British Aircraft Corporation (BAC), the supersonic airliner Concorde flew from 1976 until 2003. While this partnership may have been formed in a largely analogue era, this is still an early example of the power of digital technology. Concorde was actually the first wireless passenger aircraft. Instead of flight surfaces in the wings being connected to controls in the cockpit by actual metal wires, they were connected by electronic digital signals (although they had analogue backups just in case). Tragically, Concorde’s story ended in with the Air France crash in 2003, but Concorde lives on today in the hearts of many enthusiasts still in love with all the romance that the jet represents.

One final note on partnership

These five stories go some way to highlighting the world of possibilities that can open up when two parties are able to put their trust in one another, and work together to build something rather splendid. Here at Desynit we are firm believers in the power of partnerships; we know that long lasting relationships make for the greatest of digital innovation. We see it everyday as we work with a range of organisations who want to put their business on the Salesforce platform, and keep it there.

If you think that you might like to get to know us a little better then please sign up for our Good Systems newsletter and we can stay in touch once a month. No pressure (actually we’re not big fans of whirlwind romances..we think it’s fine to take your time over these things). We hope you’ll join us and maybe one day we could forge our own powerful partnership in the future, on the Salesforce.com platform.

Until then, Happy Valentine’s day!

Valentine's Day 2017
By Amy Grenham
10 February 2017
BusinessThe Good Systems Blog

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