Strategic alliances and other forms of collaborative inter-firm agreements have become commonplace in today's American economy. As companies get focused and specialized, they are beginning to move away from large, control-based structures to more flexible and relationship-oriented partnering. With a focus on the three phases of the Alliance Life Cycle, Dr. Shavers explores the ingredients to successful partnerships. In particular, she focuses on the impact that an alliance will have on each partner's bottom line. She further discusses the "intimacy" of the alliance, the fundamental relationship elements crucial to alliance success and the major issues associated with establishing a vision for the alliance, and the active role it plays as a guidance system for continued success.