Art & science of cross sector partnerships

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The Partnering Initiative works with individuals, organisations and systems to promote and develop partnerships for sustainable development - between business, government and civil society. Ros Tennyson presented as part of SiG's Inspiring Action for Social Impact Series. This is the presentation she spoke to;

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Art & science of cross sector partnerships

  1. 1. The  Art  &  Science     of  Cross-­‐sector  Partnering   Ros  Tennyson   Senior  Partnership  Advisor,  IBLF    The Partnership Brokering Project
  2. 2. Defining  The  Term  ‘Partnership’   An  ongoing  working  rela-onship                                     where  risks  and  benefits  are  shared    What  ma<ers  most  is  not  whether  partnerships  conform  to  this  defini?on    but  that  all  partners  in  a  partnership  agree  a  defini?on  that  underpins  their  work.     Most  partners  do  not  work  with  a  shared  defini?on...(and  this  can  be  fatal)   Most  partnerships  ‘play  safe’...(and  fail  to  maximise  poten?al)  
  3. 3. Being  in  line  with  this  defini?on  implies…   helps  to       CO-­‐CREATE   ac<vi<es   that  each   partner:     is   brings  some     ACCOUNTABLE   CONTRIBUTION   to  the  group   to  the  table  
  4. 4. Partnerships  evolve  over  ?me  …  
  5. 5. Partnerships  need  (at  least)  3  core  principles…     1. EQUITY RESPECT for the added value each party brings 2. TRANSPARENCY TRUST with partners more willing to innovate & take risks 3. MUTUTAL BENEFIT ENGAGEMENT more likely to sustain & build value over time
  6. 6. Partnering  key  issue:   Addressing (actual or perceived) power imbalance
  7. 7. Partnering  key  issue:   Understanding each other’s underlying interests
  8. 8. Partnering  key  issue:   Investing in the partnership-building process
  9. 9. Partnering  challenges  •  Leadership  &  collabora<on  •  Reconfiguring  language  &  thinking  •  Unity  &  diversity  •  Differing  views  of  ‘success’  •  LeKng  go  of  (some)  control  •  Communica<on   That’s  OK,   I’m  not   listening   I’m  not   talking  to   you  
  10. 10. Partnering  is  an  ‘art’  because  it  requires:  ✽ Insight  /  imagina?on  /              feeling  ✽ Vision  (of  the  future)  ✽ People  skills  ✽ Ac?ve  listening  ✽ Personal  engagement   Rene Magritte
  11. 11. Partnering  is  a  ‘science’  because  it  requires:   ✽  Knowledge  /  analysis  /              thinking   ✽   Understanding  (of  the                  past)   ✽   Administra?ve  /                technical  skills   ✽   Precise  speaking   ✽   Professional  detachment  
  12. 12. At  its  best,  partnering:   Allows  a  level  of  risk  /  ‘out  of  the  box’  thinking     Mobilises  /  is  driven  by  diverse  resources   Gets  beyond  /  and  changes  the  status  quo   Draws  out  new  forms  of  leadership  Makes  collabora?on  an  exci?ng  and  realis?c  op?on   Tackles  the  seemingly  impossible   Assumes  ‘change’  is  the  norm...  
  13. 13. To  download  tool  books  go  to:   thepartneringini?a?ve.org  For  informa?on  on  the  Partnership  Brokering  Project:   partnershipbrokers.org   To  connect  with  other  partnership  prac??oners:   partnershipforum.org  

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