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How to work in partnership
The Benefits of Partnership
Meaningful partnerships are the foundation for success. By creating a large network of partners you can increase both the scope and quality of your activities:
By creating a network, you can gain access to new markets and distribution channels, reaching people at a local level. Each new partner is likely to bring a new database to promote your event to via an e-newsletter and website.
Organising an activity can take up many months of planning and preparation. So engage partners to help. They can assist with putting together an invite list and they may even have their own venue you can use for free.
The right type of partners will help you to engage groups of people that you find difficult to reach.
If your partners are running activities, encourage them to engage their local media outlets. It’s likely they’ll have media contacts already.
Being associated with a national and global campaign, Global Entrepreneurship Week, will put your event in context. Add additional partners with well-regarded organisations and there will be no doubt your event is credible.
The more partners you engage, the more influence you will have. Power in numbers!
How to secure a partner
Here are some tips for making partnerships work…
Make an effort to understand what a partner wants
Put yourself in their shoes, think what will make a real difference to them, ask lots of questions and listen to what they have to say!
Aim for mutual benefit
If both your interests are aligned you’ll pull in the same direction.
Be really clear
Tease out what you both want and expect of each other. It’s always best to know up-front. Keep it light-touch but do get it down on paper - put it into an email, or an agreement and refer back to it. Make sure everyone knows what success looks like, and include specific, measurable targets.
Developing ideas together can often build better activities than you originally had in mind.
Don’t be afraid to say no, nicely
If you think things aren’t fair, say so. Explain why and see if you can make the partnership more balanced. Otherwise it’s better to say no nicely and find someone else to work with.
Do the little things well
It’s rare to jump straight in with a really big activity, so it’s important to get a sense of what it’s like to work together first. Do the little things well and make a good impression!
Manage expectations and keep your promises
Do what you say you’ll do and if for any reason things change, let your partner know and explain why.