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A good charity partnership has to be managed. It is key that from the start the goals and expectations on both sides are clear. There is no ideal duration for a charity/business partnership but it is probably true that the “Charity of the Year” relationship based solely on raising money is being replaced by more impact based relationships where both partners gain through the association. In reality it takes a year to create a working partnership that can go on in years 2 and or 3 to achieve significant change.
So you’ve decided on your charity and committed to a duration – what else can you do to ensure a great relationship?
1. Set the targets and expectations before you begin -be clear about fundraising targets and what you can realistically offer in terms of employee time and fundraising support.
2. Make sure that goals are achievable - it sounds obvious but we can all get carried away with good intentions only to find that they can be stressful and morale sapping down the line.
3. Have a point of contact with the charity – this is the go to person who can help you iron out any issues before they become major blocks to a successful partnership.
4. Consider a memorandum of understanding between yourselves and the charity. It ensures clarity around the expected outcomes and impacts for both sides and is a useful document for bringing the partnership back on track.
5. Exit strategy - from the very beginning both sides should be clear about how the partnership will end. With clear goals from the start you should be celebrating a successful collaboration. Perhaps consider an employee centred event to showcase the achievements. Social media is essential to put a focus on the differences you’ve made together and above all the invaluable links which could have a lasting impact on your colleagues, your business and the community you serve.
Here at Ignite we offer strategic, bespoke advice to companies who want to improve their community engagement and enhance their reputations. Get in touch and start making a difference.