Build and Lead a High Performing BRM Team

OpinionPosted | Category: BRM Capability, Professional Development | Contributed

What does it really take to build and lead a high-performing Business Relationship Management (BRM) team? To determine what makes a thriving BRM team will largely depend on the organization’s needs.

You build teams to meet organizational goals, and those teams are as dynamic as your business.

-Valerie Freund, BRMConnect Storyteller


Before you can confidently outline how to create a high-performing BRM team, it’s critical to understand your organizational context and where the BRM capability fits into that.

Director of BRM at Purdue University, Leanne McGiveron CBRM®, spoke on this very subject with conviction as a Storyteller for the 2020 BRMConnect Virtual conference. As a BRM, Leanne operates within the College of Agriculture and Agricultural Information Technology. This means that the business partners are faculty and technology partners ranging from core IT services to emerging technology.

“When I started the BRM program, I was handed a single directive: ‘deliver the full potential of Purdue’s technology investment to faculty.’ There was no handbook, no diagram and no clarity around implementation; just make it happen. After navigating the space solo for a couple of years, I knew it was going to be critical to build a high-performing team that had diversity of thought, skills and experiences. Reflecting upon the past several years, it began with setting a strong foundation, taking some chances, and then moving us beyond being average.”Leanne McGiveron, BRMConnect Storyteller

Leanne’s unique story chronicles the efforts behind laying a solid foundation to sustain a fruitful BRM team over the course of several years. She shares how the hiring process has evolved, why it evolved into what it is today, and how they’ve documented results over time.

 Although hiring the right people with the right mindset was a learning experience, two foundational elements remain in place still today,

  1. The Purdue BRM team has a clear directive: “To bring the full potential of the technology investment directly to our faculty.”

  2. An opportunity to build a BRM team that could rise to the challenge and thrive.

If you’re looking for a good place to start, Leanne and her colleagues have gleaned the following as non-negotiable foundational elements that make up their BRM team:

When she looks back on what it took to achieve this goal, Leanne says,

  “I was given a gift. In 2015, no one could articulate what BRM should look like in academia. In fact, I was told repeatedly it would fail. The challenge was accepted. I created a high-performing team. Together, we built an academic BRM model and continue to show the college, the university and the world what a BRM capability can do. We build strategic partnerships that lead to innovation that leads to impact.”

Are you ready for more?

Leanne McGiveron’s full recorded session and all other sessions from 2020’s BRMConnect Virtual experience are at your fingertips! Find out how you can get access to storytellers from all industries and experience levels, and grow from their invaluable insights shared this past August.

Tell your story, make an impact.

Share your insights and knowledge and advance the single, global BRM community! Storyteller submissions are open now through March 12, 2021.

Leanne McGiveron Headshot

“Volunteering has always been about giving and receiving. It’s asking, how can I give my time and skills to help move a piece forward? That’s the impact of volunteerism. If we work together, those individual pieces can become something bigger; it creates the potential for enormous impact.

 Volunteerism has had an impact on my entire life. Growing up, I was active in 4-H, a community youth program, where volunteer work of parents and others ensured that youth (including myself) had access to many life skill development opportunities.

 Fast forward to when I found BRM Institute, and I immediately recognized an environment that provides rich opportunities for volunteering. The question wasn’t about if I would volunteer, but where and how. At the end of the day, I have been receiving dividends. It’s been about stretching myself, tackling new challenges, creating a network and being a part of something bigger that is creating an impact.”- Leanne McGiveron, BRMConnect Storyteller

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