Kate Vitasek

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About: 

Kate Vitasek is an international authority for her award-winning research and Vested® business model for highly collaborative relationships.   Vitasek, a Faculty member at the University of Tennessee, has been lauded by World Trade Magazine as one of the “Fabulous 50+1” most influential people impacting global commerce.    Her work has led to 6 books, including: Vested Outsourcing: Five Rules That Will Transform Outsourcing, Vested: How P&G, McDonald’s and Microsoft Are Redefining Winning in Business Relationships and Getting to We: Negotiating Agreements for Highly Collaborative Relationships.

Vitasek is known for her practical and research-based advice for driving transformation and innovation through highly-collaborative and strategic partnerships.   She has been appeared on CNN International, Bloomberg, NPR, and on Fox Business News.  Her work has been featured in over 300 articles in publications like Forbes, Chief Executive Magazine, CIO Magazine, The Wall Street Journal, Journal of Commerce, World Trade Magazine and Future of Sourcing.

From this author

Aug 02, 2012    0

This month’s column pays a tribute to Elinor Ostrom, who shared the Nobel Prize award in economic science in 2009 with Oliver Williamson. Ostrom, who died at age 78 on June 12, was cited by the Nobel Committee for “her analysis of economic governance, especially the commons,” a term that refers to resources that are owned or shared in common among communities...

Jun 12, 2012    0

Too often people and businesses are locked into either destructive I-win-you-lose relationships, or what I often call a “ping pong” match where you are in a so-so relationship but either don’t know there is a better way or don’t have the courage to get out because things are not actually bad.

Luckily, things are changing and people are starting to wake up to the fact that win-win approaches are real – and offer real advantage and are worth...

Jun 09, 2012    0

If you follow this column you know I am a fan of some of the behavioral and transaction cost economists, including John Nash and Oliver Williamson. This month I am adding Dan Ariely to my list of big thinkers.

I’ve been a fan of Ariely since reading his book Predictably Irrational. He is an Israeli-American professor of psychology and behavioral economics; he teaches at Duke University and is the...

May 16, 2012    0

Outsourcing involves major changes in your business model, your teams, your approach to core and non-core business lines and cultural mindsets.

That aspect of the outsource decision – change – is inherently psychological because when you come right down to it, it’s always about your people, their relationships and attitudes, and the way they adjust to new thinking and new patterns that will make or break an outsourcing partnership.

That’s also why as I...

Apr 04, 2012    0

This article originally appeared in Outsource Magazine Issue #27 Spring 2012


Deciding to outsource demands a thorough make/buy analysis. However, far too many companies take the concept of make-or-buy as black and white.  Dr. Oliver E. Williamson challenged the traditional make/buy decision process with his Nobel Prize-winning work in the area of transaction cost economics. Williamson received the Nobel Prize in 2009.

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Mar 07, 2012    0

This month’s column remembers Julian L. Simon, a PhD business economist. Simon is famous (or maybe infamous) for being ‘The Doomslayer’ because he devoted his life to counter the purveyors of doom and gloom who bemoan global deterioration from overpopulation and resource drains.

Simon, who held a PhD in business economics from the University of Chicago and was Professor of Business Administration at the University of Maryland until his death in 1998, challenged the...

Feb 08, 2012    0

By design this column has, for the most part, examined the theories and research of academic and economic luminaries that have helped form the basis of modern outsourcing and my own research and development efforts in the realm of collaborative outsourcing.

This month I’d like to take a brief break and share a real-world achievement that employed Vested Outsourcing principles, while also sending out some kudos to a friend and colleague who was instrumental in instilling those...

Jan 12, 2012    0

The (r)evolution in the outsourcing industry is happening. Innovative win-win outsourcing relationships are replacing traditional cost-focused procurement methods.  The University of Tennessee calls these innovative approaches “Vested Outsourcing,” because the company and the service provider work together to align the success of the service provider with the achievement of success for the client’s business. Each party employs its core competencies to accomplish what...

Jan 06, 2012    0

I hope you have enjoyed the last columns focusing on the “economics of outsourcing.”  I promised to explore other scholars and how we can learn from their leading work. For the next several columns I’ll be featuring the most influential “Big Thinker” psychologists that have directly or indirectly influenced the development of modern outsourcing.

I have long been a proponent of building governance structures that help both parties behave in a long-...

Dec 01, 2011    0

My last two columns on Umair Haque and Joseph Stiglitz have shifted the focus a bit to the adaptations that global businesses face as more and more challenges to the traditional ideas surrounding capitalism and globalisation emerge.

This time I’ll take look back to a giant economist and political scientist, Joseph Schumpeter, who worried about the stagnation of capitalism and globalisation long before there was even a term called globalisation. Schumpeter, an Austrian-Hungarian...

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