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Raymond McDowell Associate Dean of Resources and Planning, Bristol Business School, University of the West of England, UK

Ray McDowell is the Associate Dean of Resources and Planning, Bristol Business School, University of the West of England, UK.  The Department numbers about 100 permanent staff across the range of management disciplines and means that Ray is managing business-to-business relationships pretty much every day of the week.  This comes as no surprise to him; all business is about managing relationships and he learnt that very early in his professional life.  That professional life began in the private sector and before pursuing an academic career he occupied positions at GEC-Marconi leading the company’s involvement in a collection of international research collaborations.  Those professional experiences fostered a particular interest in business-to-business marketing and relationships in particular that he has pursued ever since and which was magnified ten-fold as a consequence of his involvement with the work of the IMP Group of researchers. 

Despite a role at the university that precludes as active an engagement with students as he used to have and that allows for as much involvement in business to business research as he’d probably prefer, he still gets a tremendous buzz from talking to companies about the sorts of business to business relationships they have.  He is constantly amazed at the number of times he hears company directors describe the relationship they would like to have (rather than recognising the relationship they actually have) and bemoan the fact that counterparts don’t seem to treat them as they’d prefer.  If only they all read business-to-business marketing books like this one.