Simon Town
Simon Town consulting

Support, development, growth
07708 169 747

Simon Town consulting

Support > development > growth

Organisational development

Partnership working skills

Partnership working is a much promoted approach but often poorly understood in modern practice. Whilst many people advocate its benefits, few people have ever received any purpose designed training in key competencies or fully understand the implications of partnership activity including the risks as well as opportunities.

One of the key principles behind ‘partnership’ working and agreements is that they always imply ‘shared risk and reward’ – the principle being that you have to ‘risk’ a little more in order to achieve enhanced ‘rewards’.

Partnerships involve give and take and negotiating solutions for the benefit of all parties. There are a number of key skills, attitudes as well as important elements of knowledge that are required if you are to optimise your partnership working and to minimise the risks.

With more than 20 years’ experience in negotiating a wide range of partnership agreements, STC can provide you with critical support, assessment, information and training around partnerships.

STC has reviewed hundreds of partnership agreements and can quickly diagnose issues within them, allowing you to move forward with increased security and peace of mind. We use a purpose designed 30 point review template to support this process.

Worried about a partnership you’re involved in?

Our experience of partnerships provides a few telling insights. If any of the following are true for you/ your organisation, then our advice is to address this soon:

  • No one has a copy of the partnership agreement
  • It wasn’t signed or you don’t have a signed copy
  • You now have some new partners who weren’t in the original agreement
  • No one keeps a decision record or log
  • If it ‘looks like a partnership’ and ‘acts like a partnership’, the law will most likely treat it as a partnership, irrespective of your agreement/ constitution
  • No one has updated the risk assessment/there isn’t one
  • Someone says ‘Nothing has gone wrong previously’
  • There is a belief you can always control the other partners
  • There is a mixture or combination of statutory and community organisations
  • There is no annual check on insurance cover

Contact us for more details on why these issues matter or if you need help to address them.

What we offer

We offer a range of training programmes on partnerships and improving partnership working covering the key partnership competencies including:

  • Knowledge of legal and financial issues
  • How to write and assess agreements
  • STC 30 point review template
  • Negotiating and influencing skills
  • Risk assessment and mitigation
  • Interpersonal skills
  • Problem solving and conflict resolution

Partnership creation and development

We can help to bring together different parties to establish joint working goals, considering key issues such as personal and positional power, influencing skills, negotiation, mediation and conflict resolution.

We aim to ensure that you are well placed to work with others to identify mutual goals and benefits for all parties and equally to know when partnerships need to be reviewed or re-established where these have gone off track.

Examples of previous partnership agreements

  • Major ‘dual use’ school facility agreements
  • Partner agreements for funding applications
  • Community and statutory sector agreements linked into community asset transfer
  • Tripartite agreements with funders and grant recipients
  • Enhanced partner agreements to create new streams of income from unique training schemes

Partnership agreement – advice, assessment, improvement

We can examine your agreements and provide you with high quality advice on what needs to be included, improved and what should be excluded. We can run sessions with you and your partners to improve how you work together in the future.

And finally, if you take nothing else away from here then remember these 2 points: partnerships should deliver improved outcomes through their synergy and partners are jointly and severally liable for their actions .