Lessons from #Progress2017: Partnerships and Purpose

On Day One at Progress 2017 the conversation turned to partnerships with Mark Wakeham (Environment Victoria), Donna Luckman (Alternative Technology Association) and Richard Irving (Bank Australia).

Two key points of note came from a discussion about how to create and manage partnerships for purpose.

1. Have a Relationships Policy

There’s a risk in every relationship. Commercial and for-purpose partnerships are no different. There are obvious benefits to partnership and respective partners should always offer reciprocal value as a result of joining forces. Donna Luckman pointed out that it is vital to have a stringent framework for decision making, ethical considerations, and determining who, why and how you form a partnership.

She recommended you establish key pillars to your relationship policy that aligns with your mission and values. The pillars either need to uphold the values, or identify risks that would make them topple.

She spoke of the criteria her organisation has established:

  • The purpose of the partnership must be linked to mission and strategic goals.
  • There must be no risk to independence.
  • Partnerships must be transparent and open.

2. Partnerships isn’t just about the money or the brand

Richard Irving urged organisations to consider a broad spectrum of value they could offer each other, beyond the commercial or brand advantages to partnering and highlighted that the charities Bank Australia works with offer value in exchange – it’s not a one way street.

Some value exchanges to consider when partnering include:

  • Talent and time: intellect, skills, time, mentoring, guidance on best practice and sharing replicable processes and systems.
  • Treasure: money is obvious. Donating infrastructure is another (furniture, technology, space). Connections are extremely valuable – leverage each other’s networks, audiences, advocates and customers – share each other’s stories.

Good2Give’s Head of Marketing Communications, Lyndal Stuart, attended Progress 2017  the Centre for Australian Progress’ biennial event for Australia’s leading campaigners, advocates and change-makers from every sector. Lyndal tweeted from the event @Good2GiveNGO #Progress2017.