5 Ways Nonprofits Can Nurture Relationships with Partners
Nonprofit organizations have unique relationships with their partners, and these relationships need to be adequately nurtured in order to maintain and promote growth. Quite often these partnerships play a crucial role in the advancement of a nonprofit’s mission, and partners typically expect something in return for their support.
For this reason, nonprofit organizations need to continuously maintain relationships, as these collaborations are mutually beneficial. In order to shed some light on how to bolster your relationship with your partners, here are 5 things to consider:
Clarity Regarding Expectations
For a relationship with a partner to flourish and develop over extended periods of time, expectations and desired outcomes must be regularly reassessed. This re-evaluation can occur annually or more frequently, but it is important to provide both organizations with some time to evaluate the relationship that is building. This time to evaluate offers an opportunity for both parties to ensure that there is still a strong alignment in regard to goals and expectations.
Communication is the foundation of any effective collaboration. As a nonprofit, your relationship with your partners are no different. Promoting an open line of communication ensures that both sides can identify strengths and weaknesses in order to ensure prolonged success. Without clear communication, expectations are not met and the partnership is destined to fail at some point.
When building relationships, transparency is key. Keep it honest and open when discussing the goals your organization has in mind, and the strategy you are taking to meet those goals. When having this conversation it important to be very clear about how this partnership will not only help you meet those goals, but how it will be beneficial to both organizations. This process often requires a nuanced and substantive dive into the specifics, but a transparent approach will ensure that both parties and their goals align in a way that promotes a successful partnership.
Provide Evidence of Results
When a partnership experiences success, it is important to inform everyone involved of the victories and milestones. This means that nonprofit organizations should always let their partners know the latest and greatest news coming from your organization. Make them aware of the success that you achieved, and how they played a role in these important developments. This information not only keeps your partners up to date with your mission, but promotes a sense of community and makes them feel like a part of your journey … because they are.
Imagine You Are in Their Shoes
A change in perspective can be a transformative experience. Spend some time going beyond just listening to your partners, and really make an effort to understand where they are coming from. Having a grasp of your partner’s motivations and challenges will help you find solutions and results that benefit both organizations.