We’re into the TOP 5. This article is the 7th in a series of 10 articles on the techniques which can be used to get Roaming Partners to sign Roaming Agreements with you. Seduction may not sound like the right word for the skill needed to get other Operators to be your partner, but what we really mean here is that you have to “win them over” to your way of thinking. These articles are intended to help you get your roaming agreements signed and launched quick!
As Roaming people we are motivated to achieve our goals in the most efficient and accurate manner possible especially when it comes to Roaming information. So when faced with important data, our instincts are to correctly interpret and react—particularly when faced with signalling information, faults and fraud data, IOT information, Contact Details etc since an inaccurate behavior on our part could result in a great and direct loss to our company.
With that being said, people attempt to gain an accurate construal of the situation from MS word documents and files which may not optimally be easy to consume when faced with 200+ Roaming Partners and impossible to achieve well with more than 400 partners.
A big cheer for all those Roaming people out there who are the captains of Roaming, that as best as possible (however hard and time consuming it is to do) hold the Roaming department together, often with little acknowledgement or realisation of the efforts made to keep their ship sailing in the right direction.
It must also be said that in our industry, Roaming people are not often rewarded for acting in accordance with the beliefs, suggestions and commands of authority figures outside of their own management line, such as the GSMA and/or other community norms. Individuals are likely to comply with authority figures who are internal to their company and whose orders or actions effect directly their pay, working conditions or future career.
Typically however these internal authority figures are not close to our industries binding processes, or may not believe that they need to take action, that it will effect them reputationally or may have a financial benefit (since often the benefits are construed to be low or hard to calculate). In many cases they don’t see the opportunities to take their Roaming department forwards by investing a little and gaining simple returns in efficiency gains and increased productivity.
I don’t really know of any network globally who isn’t going to be interested in further productivity for their Roaming department; however many operators still find themselves “non compliant” to Industry requirements simply because they aren’t aware or have other priorities.
As part of the GSMA Compliancy project which i was lucky enough to be directly involved with (the concept was inspired by TripAdvisor, Ebay and Amazon) the GSMA now looks for Operators to self certify themselves against a number of key documents/ industry initiatives that all bring tangiable benefits not only to themselves but to all Operators. While the driver is to judge operators openly on their compliancy and create a community of compliancy heroes, the benefits of becoming complaint are not only worthy, but forward thinking and will I believe one day propel GSM Operators into a new level of productivity.
And as we stand at the wheel of our ship we can finally see our navigation efforts may be paying off, because there is light on the horizon. We have tried for years to use social psychology and influence to get industry projects off the ground. We have used words, actions or the mere presence of our attitudes and behavior to bring about a change. But the driving force behind compliance is not moral responsibility. Change in our industry may only be driven by financial impact. So today as a number of important industry Operators behind the Compliance project decided they will only work with Roaming Partners who are “compliant” we may start to see some positive changes.
The Basic Technique: I personally advise any operator to prepare internal business cases for compliancy and take immediate action. Become fully compliant to the most important rules and documentation in our industry.
The Seduction: Become more complaint than your competitors, to all the documents and be the best in your country “Premium Operator” working specifically with Operators who are also complaint. Tell your story of why you became compliant. Join an elite list of Operators who are compliant and whom most operators globally will want to work with.
This works because you will quickly get a good reputation as an Operator particularly if you act now Q2,Q3,Q4 of 2013 when there is a buzz about compliancy (and get some nice exposure in Industry fora).
Look out for next weeks article on Technique Number 3.
Grow Roaming Consult Rocco.