GETTING THE BOARD ON BOARD
Aug 11, 2020
The Board has legal obligations to ensure your organisation is fulfilling its purpose, remains solvent, meets obligations and will ultimately be responsible for dealing with any ramifications from a corporate partnership. Therefore, it’s imperative that you have Board sign off prior to ‘going to market’.
In my experience many Board members, even those that have previously worked in the corporate sector, are not specialists in corporate partnerships and may not realise the complexities involved. It’s your job to educate them.
It’s vital to explain that it’s not as simple as providing their contacts for you to call, and it’s not about sending out 30 proposals on email. When you negotiate a legally-binding agreement with a corporate partner it could ultimately impact your level of awareness (which in some instances, can put immense pressure on a service), provide access to new donors, set a precedent for how much you are willing to ‘lend’ your brand for and so on.
Here’s 3 things you can do to ensure that your Board are both enthusiastic and realistic about your corporate partnerships’ strategy:
- De-mystify corporate partnerships
- Some Board members may be concerned about the kind of corporate that their organisation will be publicly aligned to. This fear is justified. By embracing and implementing a process like BePartnerReady.com®, you are reducing the risk, because it’s been tried & tested numerous times with great results. The process puts YOU in the driver’s seat and you’ll do ample due diligence on prospective partners
- On the flipside, make it clear that a corporate partnership is far more complex than a philanthropic gift, and that 18 months is a realistic timeframe to secure a new partner
- Share the BePartnerReady.com® process infographic with them
- Share the article from the May 2020 issue of F&P magazine entitled ‘Should you dance with the devil in the pale moon light’
- Keep them informed
- Regularly update them about the ever-changing corporate landscape – read online articles from credible magazines like Forbes & Inc to see what the corporates are reading. Research and share reports on growth areas and emerging businesses. Remind the Board of the importance of being professional & compelling in order to secure corporate income. Who knows what the world’s going to look like in 2021, but we need to be ready for it, whatever shape it takes
- One thing we do know - because we’ve survived an economic downturn before - is that companies do not stop investing in causes, they are just far more discerning. They will want mutually beneficial partnerships that deliver a ROI. So, your offer must be robust and compelling for them to consider
- Inspire & motivate
- Share the ‘7 benefits’ infographic with them so they can see that a corporate can provide far more than just cash (although there is significant tied and untied cash to be gained as well).
- Participate in our free trial to guide you through Drafting Your Intention. Involve the Board in this process and share the resulting Intention. It will help them to consider why you want a corporate partner, what kind of partner, and the process will enable them to see how a corporate partner can truly transform your organisation and assist in achieving your Vision and Purpose
Your Board will have plenty of things to concern themselves with over the next few months, so it’s time for you to step up and be leader in corporate partnerships and show everyone how it’s done.