Uncategorized Jun 04, 2024

Winter. It’s my time to light the fire, cook a hearty curry, and savour a glass of Pinot Noir. And head to bed early! For centuries, Winter has been a natural season for introspection. As nature rests and animals hibernate, humans often cocoon and reflect on life and work.

If you’re reflecting on your corporate partnerships’ strategy, now is an ideal time for a review. Whether you’re just starting out, actively pursuing corporate prospects or managing a handful of existing partnerships, setting a Corporate Partnerships Intention is a great way to re-align your corporate partnerships strategy with your Mission and Vision.

There’re 3 good reasons to set a Corporate Partnerships Intention:

1) Focus

It gets you focused on a clear outcome so you can concentrate all your energy on that and avoid distractions and so-called ‘opportunities’ that throw you off course. Changemakers can’t waste a drop of precious time. There’s a world of science behind the power of intention setting – in essence it helps you to see into the future, create a plan and stay on track until it’s achieved.

2) Enrolment

The majority of changemakers do not operate in a vacuum – they’re part of a broader team with BHAG’s[1] to achieve. Having a clear statement of intent (Intention) helps to enrol team members, management, and board to support & assist you.  Even better, get them involved in the creation of the Intention and they’ll not only support it but OWN it! A pitfall to avoid: if the Board think the Intention is a tangible goal and it becomes part of your KPI’s! At the start of our process, we set an Intention and it only becomes a goal at Step 5 (Partnership model). It’s only then that you know the value of your brand and your assets and can articulate what you can offer in return (a partnership is, of course, a two-way exchange of benefit).

3) Give corporates what they want

Corporates are brilliant at solving problems and the majority want to be part of solving societal problems, it’s why they partner with non-profits. While it can be tempting for some non-profits to focus on the financial opportunity, a corporate partnership can provide far more value than that! Setting an Intention that aligns to your Vision, Mission, Purpose & key strategic goals - encourages you to think bigger than just money. 

It’s imperative that non-profits shift from seeing a corporate as simply a cash ‘donor’, to viewing a corporate as a true PARTNER that can directly help you achieve your ambitions!

Intention setting should

a) be positive & uplifting – focus on what you want and why, not what you don’t want

b) respect the past but not dictated by it

c) use plain English, avoiding organisational jargon, acronyms, and Annual Report gobbledegook

d) be SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant & Time-bound) and

e) organisation-focused not fundraising-focused (it’s about finding a partner that can work with you to achieve your Vision, Mission & Purpose, not (only) contribute cash).

Here’s the thing. If all you genuinely want is cash - there are easier and quicker ways of getting money (from government, philanthropists, Trusts and Foundations). There’s no point in upskilling in corporate partnerships if you’re pitching a one-way ‘ask’. 

A partnership where no money changes hand isn’t sustainable and it’s definitely not our model. In fact, the® process has spawned numerous multi-million-dollar partnerships. It’s all about our very first point – focus. If you focus on how a company can help you achieve your Vision, Mission and Purpose, this will unlock passion, resources and unlock the budget.  Ironically If you focus on just the money, the purse will remain closed like a clam.

Keen to set a corporate partnerships Intention? You’re in luck! You can work through our tried & tested Intention Setting exercise, on us!  Yes – free, gratis, on the house! It includes an instructional video, easy to use Template and best practice example to ensure you get it right. It’ll also give you a sneak peek into our online program. What are you waiting for? 


Hailey Cavill-Jaspers

[1] Big Hairy Audacious Goals



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