What makes a client offshore visit successful?

I had blogged about Offshoring Study trip [and] where westerners - clients, prospects, students and others - make regular trek to offshore locations. There are different agendas for trips that a variety of stakeholders undertake and some of them include:

  • Students and academics: Empirically observe and learn from people on the ground. The goal of such offshore study trips is generally to observe aspects of offshoring from an academic perspective and the agenda could include visits to offshore companies, meetings and Q&A sessions with executives etc. [Examples of such visits 'study trip' 'India Study Trip']
  • Prospective clients: The agenda of such visits by prospective clients is to assess the infrastructure and capabilities of one or more short listed service providers. Such visits are generally organized for executive management or CXOs during final stages of negotiating with service providers.  Of course, the agenda is for those undertaking the trip to see through PPTware and online brochures.
  • Existing clients: The agenda for client visits in an existing relationship vary and depend on the nature of engagement and prospects for future enhancement in relationships. The visits are generally orchestrated by onsite engagement managers who may also accompany visiting executives. Other times such visits may involve line managers, architects and others from client end to spend time with offshore teams at their base locations.

Case in point is a recent visit by a CIO and senior executives of a client I work with. The client's team was accompanied by the onsite Engagement Manager, who got the following 'thank you' note after the visit: