At a presentation the other day, Charlotte Dimond of Sidekick PR explained the importance of partnership in successful working relationships and we couldn’t agree more.
The way we work with our clients is in partnership with them – shared objectives and goals that we all want to achieve. We could spend our time chasing prestigious titles and entering awards but we don’t want it to be about us, it’s about you – the client. We want YOU to be award winning, we want YOU to see the results of the strategic marketing plan and we want you to feel like we’re the addition to YOUR team to help you thrive and grow.
Working in partnership brings rewards far beyond anything monetary. Of course, in the commercial world there has to be an exchange of invoices and payments, but nothing beats the feeling of seeing your hard work pay off for a client and their appreciation of that effort. If you’re not vested in the ultimate outcome and it’s purely transactional then you simply won’t put in the same amount of time, energy and effort as you would if you’re fully subscribed to achieving the desired results as a partnership.
When considering partnering with another company be it in a service capacity or otherwise, there are a couple of things to consider before jumping in with both feet first.
• The People
Can you get along with those you’re looking to work with, and, when a challenge arises (which it inevitably will) do you have or can you build a strong enough relationship to withstand the difficult conversations that may need to happen without compromising the end result?
• Vision/ Expectations
Do you clearly understand each other’s vision for what you are hoping to achieve and is it shared to the same degree? If you’re not singing from the same hymn sheet then it can be easy for cracks to appear. If you think you’re working towards one vision and it’s slightly different from that of your client / supplier / stakeholder then it won’t be long before one side or the other becomes unhappy with the direction of travel. Communicate clearly and understand from the outset what the vision is, fully subscribe to it and share it.
• The Future
Have you got a set time-frame on your partnership or are you willing to take it a step at a time, (within reason)? Working well in partnership usually leads to organic growth, for example increased volume of referrals, however, it can be difficult to specify exactly when this will happen. Partnership working can be like a happy marriage- if you share the same vision and expectations and are working towards a shared goal then you should be able to look forward to a happy lifetime partnership.