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About Norma and Deborah

Screen Shot 2016-04-18 at 2.53.52 pm Norma Watenpaugh is the founding principal and CEO of Phoenix  Consulting Group ( which provides  partnering and collaboration consulting services with expertise in  go-to-market strategy, multi-channel and alliance management,  and ecosystem development. Prominent clients include, Adobe Systems, Cisco Systems, Dupont, PayPal,  Microsoft, SAP, and Xerox. Norma has been a Board member of  the Association of Strategic Alliance Professionals and former  Best Practices Committee Chair. She has led the organization in  developing  professional credentials and in revitalizing the ASAP  Handbook of Alliance Management: A Practitioner’s Guide. She  currently leads the US delegation to the ISO standards committee  for Collaborative Business Relationship Management.


Screen Shot 2016-04-18 at 2.58.38 pm Deborah Henken has an extensive marketing background,  having  led 
strategic marketing, channel and outbound efforts as  head of  marketing at Learning@Cisco, where she influenced  revenue  increases of 110% in six years, marketing management  positions in  advertising, market development and channels at  Hewlett  Packard, the first Director of Channels and Alliances  Marketing at  BEA Systems,an  internet infrastructure company  and Informix, a  database company sold to IBM, and VP of  Marketing at startups in  the customer contact and online  marketing space. Prior to  working in high tech, she worked in  educational administration at  Stanford University and  Northwestern University, served as  Director of Marketing for the  Education Division of the California  Society of CPAs, and  launched and ran executive seminars for the  Tom Peters Group.  She has an MBA from Northwestern  University’s Kellogg  Graduate School of







Podcast Questions 

  1. When should a company look for ways of growth other than by selling its core products? Is it when the growth plateaus for its existing core products? When should they look for diversifying into new product line or capabilities?

  2. Let’s take each of the scenarios for Build, Buy and Partner. Under what circumstance would a company decide to build a solution?

  3. And when do you think a company would decide to buy a solution?

  4. And when does the company look to Partner?

  5. How do you decide the best strategy of the three —What are the tradeoffs?

  6.  What are the tradeoffs for Buying other companies?

  7. What are the tradeoffs for Partnering?

  8. Is this something that you can decide using common sense or is there a framework to use to make such decisions?

  9. Most of your examples you shared are from large organizations. Does this also apply to startups in growth stage?

  10. Deborah, you also mentioned about a  Build, Buy Partner tool developed by Phoenix Consulting Group. Do you want to talk a bit about it?



  • Build Buy Partner Tool developed by Phoenix Consulting Group

  • Slideshare presentation by Norma and Deborah