Examining The New Gartner Interactive Magic Quadrant

Gartner has recently announced that an enhanced version of the Magic Quadrant will be released  on 29 July. So what’s driving this change, what is it, and what does it mean to you as an AR professional?

Here comes MQ 2.0
The Gartner MQ has not really changed its physical appearance since its original introduction. The famous two-by-two matrix and dots started life on paper and were effectively shifted onto the web with no real change. Over the years, the MQ has been industrialized at the back end with a structured measurement methodology. The front end moved from a static, locked-in-PDF view to a mildly interactive view several years ago, where users could mouse-over a position to read vendor specific strengths and challenges. The degree of interactivity however is about to increase dramatically.

So what’s driving this minor revolution? Continue reading

A New Year and a New Owner for Yankee Group – the 451 Group

On January 3rd 451 Group announced the acquisition of Yankee Group from Alta Communications (private equity firm) for an undisclosed sum. All Yankee Group employees are to be retained and the company will operate as an independent division of the 451 Group adding the 18 analysts (and 7 affiliate analysts) of Yankee Group to the roster of some 60 analysts at 451 Group.  Terry Waters will stay on as CEO of the new 451 division.

You can find some interesting analysis by Duncan Chapple regarding the financial background to this acquisition at www.analystequity.com/1853/yankee-group-saved-by-451-acquisition. Duncan’s perspective is reflective of the recent re-structuring at Yankee Group and provides some good historical context to Yankee Group’s past ownership. Continue reading

[Guest Post] Humpty Gartner’s Logic

Blog courtesy of: Simon Levin (IIAR Board Member), Managing Director at The Skills Connection

A client of mine was talking to a Gartner analyst recently and learned, to his delight, that the analyst had given a particular prospect a clear steer in his direction.

“They’re a mid-sized company and they asked for my advice on relevant vendors, so I told them you guys were definitely relevant for small and mid-sized enterprises,” the analyst said.

But nothing happened. Our client didn’t hear from the prospect. And it was only later that we discovered our client had even been removed from a previously compiled consideration list as a direct result of this brief conversation.

The client was mortified. The analyst was baffled. The prospect, of course, missed the opportunity of acquiring what may well have been the best possible solution for his particular set of requirements. Continue reading

[GUEST POST] Big Dogs don’t yap: the secret ingredient for MQ success

Blog courtesy of: Simon Levin (IIAR Board Member)

What is it that makes the difference when it comes to making the step up into the Leaders section of Gartner’s Magic Quadrant? Ever wondered what companies who gain recognition as Leaders have in common? Having seen four of our MQ Tune-Up clients gain Leaders status for the first time last quarter, I thought it might be interesting to go looking for some common themes or attributes.

And as it turned out, the exercise was well worth the effort, because it highlighted one key factor I’d never consciously identified before.

We’re calling it the Big Dog syndrome, and it’s all about looking the part, acting like a Leader right from the start, and, above all, believing that that top right quadrant is your rightful home.

There’s more about this idea on The Skills Connection’s blog but the essence of it is blindingly simple. For a company to be perceived as a Leader, it has to have a leaderly air about it. It has to radiate conviction, as well as competence. It needs to put its case across well, but without the yapping, snapping desperation that marks out those that try too hard. Continue reading

[Guest Post] The Secret Sauce and the Secret Sorcerers by Simon Levin

I was sitting in the middle of a noisy intellectual ruckus about the future of research and advisory services some weeks back when an odd thought struck me.

It was at the London IIAR meeting in March, where R “Ray” Wang and his Constellation all-stars were agitating for radical change in the research industry. Ray was talking about new models, new delivery methods, and new value propositions, while some very respected AR practitioners were questioning the value of his approach. Did the world need this kind of shake-up? And, if so, was it really going to change the nature of AR’s dealings with analysts?

I was supposed to be keeping the peace and chairing the meeting. But I kept being distracted by thoughts about whether all this might be relevant to me.

I suspect our clients at The Skills Connection have a narrow view of AR, centered almost entirely on the analysts’ impact on buying decisions.

And this thought made me ponder how much that’s true for AR in general. Continue reading

[GUEST POST] Timing is everything

There’s no penalty for jumping the gun

On your marks. Get Set. Go. When the starting gun goes off, there is always going to be a rush of adrenalin, a surge of excitement, and a striving to get up to speed and do your best.

But when the starting gun goes off in relation to a Gartner Magic Quadrant (MQ) assessment of your company, in many ways it is already too late.

Magic Quadrants generally appear once a year. For the companies who are on the receiving end, they can be make or break factors, with a huge influence on business prospects for the year ahead.

For the analysts involved, they are important pieces of work, but they have to be fitted in alongside research reports, client inquiries and meetings, events and presentations, custom engagements, webinars, blogs, and a host of other commitments. Leaving all the rest of an analyst’s annual workload aside, producing a Magic Quadrant means identifying and investigating multiple companies that will appear in the final diagram. On top of this, the analyst has to give due consideration to all the peripheral candidates that need to be evaluated before decisions can be taken about whether or not they should be included.

The wonder is not that so many MQ assessments leave so many vendors feeling disappointed, but that so many MQs win general acceptance as being pretty fair, diligent, and useful assessments of the state of play in particular markets.

To read the full article click here.

Extract courtesy of Simon Levin, MD (Europe) – The Skills Connection

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