Thursday, December 01, 2005

Your partnership not working?

#1 - partnerships need clear objectives for partners to coalesce around. I've lost count of the number of partnerships I see who spend too much energy deciding what they are supposed to be doing. I am a great proponent that form should follow function. Sometimes a partnership is not the answer!!!

More lessons from some research I did below...

1. Partnerships need clear and reasonable rationales and objectives for their creation, maintenance and continuity. They should never be seen as an end in themselves.

2. Collective arrangements are more effectively constructed around definite and clear objectives.

3. In the initial stages of a partnership arrangement, a small number of lead participants can more effectively and quickly establish policies, strategies and operations.

4. The danger must be avoided not to be too exclusive in membership when establishing a working relationship or formal partnership. Parties that are asked to participate once the partnership is established or even has established policies and priorities can often resent this, or even interpret their position as one of being forced to fit into existing arrangements. It is important that research is done to identify key organisations and constituents at an early stage. Consultation may be enough to give them some ownership of the partnership arrangement in early stages.

5. A distinction must be made between participation of a partnership as a decision-maker or leader, and as a consultee or constituency representative. Combining these roles with a large number of partners in addition makes decision making slow and cumbersome.

6. Inclusion based on constituent or interest group representation alone is perhaps insufficient. It is more beneficial if members can bring additional benefits or skills to the relationship.

7. Consensual decisions are not necessarily the best decisions in the interests of the local area and its development and regeneration. There is a danger of reaching the ‘lowest common denominator’ in consensual decision-making. The ‘common denominator’ can be made even lower as the decision-making membership is increased in number.

8. Inter-organisational tensions are healthy and educational for participants. Development agencies can be kept informed by listening to the opinions of other groups. This process may improve the implementation process, fill gaps in knowledge and expertise and provide feedback on the effectiveness of programmes and services.

9. Inter-agency working requires certain skills and attributes to maximise its potential. Careful thought, and personnel development need to be made in the agency prior to, and in the process of, external relations and inter-organisational working. Managing a relationship with another organisation is not simple nor straightforward. It requires much appreciation and knowledge of other organisations as well as requisite skills. It must also be recognised that experience is a necessary part of building up this expertise.

10. Partnership relations represent an important conduit for feedback about the agency’s performance and reputation amongst its peers. They are also a forum for establishing favourable reputation. Importantly, it must be also remembered that they can also sour the agency’s reputation in a very public arena.


At 4:09 am, Blogger Matthew said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

At 4:18 am, Blogger maquli said...

if u want to do partnership on network then you have to know all details, means nothing have ti=o be hidden from u....
otherwise u will be in loss.


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