Last weekend, I enjoyed the FA Cup final on television. It's the oldest football (soccer) tournament in the world and consists of teams from the English Premier League down to five leagues below, which can include amateur teams. The final was played between Manchester City Football Club, a team that finished the season in second place in the premier league against Wigan Athletic, a team that finished in 18th place and is therefore relegated to league below the English Premier League for next year. This was truly a final between a financial giant that had all of the expensive players -- the average salary of a Manchester City player on the pitch during the final was more than $16.5 million -- against a team whose total salary for the entire team was only $16.5 million. It was a terrific match, and in the end, Wigan won the cup by a score of 1-0 and by far looked liked the best team on the pitch.
Interestingly enough, this scenario plays out at many companies today.
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It is quite common, especially in large enterprises, that you look at established vendors that can provide all the tools you need. They've built many of the tools themselves -- and the ones they didn't build, they acquired. It is quite common to look at companies such as BMC, Dell, Hewlett-Packard, and IBM as the vendors of choice. They have many tools, and they're happy to upsell you on each one.
The problem is that you have all these premium products that often don't work well together. They may do just fine on their own; they can solve a bunch of problems in a specific area. But as the Manchester City Football Club demonstrated last week, unless you play like a team, it’s very hard to win the game. How often do you hear people bemoaning how two products work together? "It's like the two teams didn’t even talk to each other." Many times, they haven't. There's a reason why many companies have two sales teams for the same products: to exploit that internal division at your company.