readiness q&a Mar 14, 2022

One of the things I’m most passionate about is helping changemakers prepare for success.  For many entrepreneurial non-profits, the idea of preparation and planning is just plain boring, they want to get out there and get results RIGHT NOW.  The reality is, it simply doesn’t happen that way.  As Steve Jobs once said, "if you really look closely, most overnight successes took a long time”.

Jerry Seinfeld, American comedian, was hailed an ‘overnight sensation’. Love him or hate him, he’s one of the most successful self-made multi-millionaires of all time, with an estimated wealth of $950m[1]

Dig a little deeper and you’ll discover that the key to his success? Many years of incredible hard work and dedication to his craft. Jerry’s mum was of Syrian descent, his father Hungarian and he grew up in a humble Jewish household. He became involved in various school productions and tried out open mic nights around New York,...

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And just like that – Autumn is upon us.  It’s my favourite season.  Harvest festivals, a crisp orange carpet on my driveway, cooler temperatures, shorter days, cosy nights in front of the fire sipping a Pinot.

As the leaves start to change colour and fall, nature is showing us the beauty of letting go, and the opportunity to embrace the new.  Letting go of old patterns that may not work for us anymore, and embrace new habits that serve our goals and purpose.

Letting go

Autumn is a brilliant time to reflect on strategies and processes that you’ve followed in the past, and assess if they’re going to work for you, moving forward.  The world is not what it was 2 years ago.  Consumers have clarity on what’s important to them.  Companies and brands have been in constant pivot mode, in order to survive and stay ahead of customer’s changing needs.  Many non-profits have taken risks that have paid off, for others...

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Uncategorized Feb 21, 2022

Bully Zero is a small charity that punches way above its weight.  They educate and advocate to prevent and reduce bullying across Australia, delivering their programs to schools and workplaces across Australia.  Since it was founded in 2013 by Ali Halkic, Bully Zero has visited 1,214 schools, has run 3,642 education sessions, and educated over 403,000 young people, parents and employees on bullying prevention.

CEO Janet Grima applied for the Marlin Communications/BePartnerReady.com® scholarship in 2021 and was victorious.  Despite being a hands-on CEO, Janet dedicated a day a week to implementing the 7 steps of the program and before she had completed the program, was approached by a corporate.

Janet being Janet; took the bull by the horns and pitched and won the partner, adding to her existing partner – socially conscious clothing label Kind is Cool.  She is also negotiating with yet another partner, soon to come on board.

For Janet, doing the...

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Uncategorized Dec 08, 2021

Former BePartnerReady.com® student the Heart Foundation signed up a new partnership with Coles in 2020.  Together, their goal was to support Australians’ aspirations to become healthier and more active. 

Coles launched the Coles Health Hub, a one-stop online portal offering practical information & solutions around exercise, diet & nutrition, mental health and most importantly, motivation. 

This partnership couldn’t have come at a better time, as many Australians struggled to maintain their health goals during 2020/21 with a series of very challenging lockdowns, playing havoc with people’s mental health, ability to exercise and eat well.

Coles brought on board sporting legends, including AFL star player James Podsiadly, to provide inspiring videos and motivational messaging as part of a 28-day crusade where health food products in Coles were reduced by 50%. News Corp helped to amplify the message even further by running a #RejuveNation...

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Uncategorized Nov 16, 2021

Despite living in a COVID bubble for the past year, Australian consumers have come out swinging in favour of companies that support charities.

New research (launched 29 October 2021) reveals that during lockdown, Australians have become more concerned about social and environmental issues, and they’re demanding that the corporate sector step up and show leadership in solving social issues. 62% of Australians say that during COVID, they’ve re-evaluated their priorities in life, and if buying a product or service, they’d rather buy from companies doing good.

The Conscious Consumer Report 2021, reveals the Conscious Consumer movement has reached a mass market peak, with a new kind of activist consumer emerging from lockdown – the Crusading Consumer.  

The research by Di Marzio Research and BePartnerReady.com®, conducted in August 2021, reveals that just under two-thirds of Australians believe that Corporate Australia, of all the institutions, has...

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Uncategorized Oct 11, 2021

When meeting a corporate for the first time, it’s a little like First Dates.  Or, for those of you that have been binge watching Bridgerton – a Debutante ball.

Aaah Bridgerton.  A period drama that’s oh so proper and oh so naughty.  With a mightily fine Duke of Hastings that’s far from stuffy.

What I love about this show – and why it makes me think of corporate partnerships – is that Daphne, the protagonist, is a modern lass who knows her worth.  She is presented (via that antiquated idea of a Debutante ball) to a whole host of seemingly appropriate suitors, and yet she holds out for her perfect match.

Too many non-profits are just not fussy enough. Often, through lack of preparedness or robust thinking, they partner with a company that doesn’t value them, creates overservicing and burnout, and are not there for the right reason.

I encounter many non-profits with very nervous Boards when it comes to corporate...

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Uncategorized Oct 07, 2021

I know that Aussies & Kiwis squabble over ‘ownership’ of Crowded House, but there’s no disputing that Neil Finn is a certified rock legend.  The New Zealander is a multi-talented musician, prolific writer of timeless, memorable songs, and was awarded an OBE.

He didn’t just BECOME a rock legend.  It took years of hard work, practice and honing of his craft.  At age 12, encouraged by his piano-playing mum, he declared himself a musician. Performing at family functions, folk clubs and prisons, he performed self-penned songs. His first band, After Hours, failed. He then joined Split Enz, earning critical acclaim.  International stardom with Crowded House took another decade of relentless writing, recording and touring.

Success rarely happens in any field without hard work and preparation.  And yet, when it comes to winning corporate partnerships, I witness some non-profit boards set unrealistic targets, fail to provide training or a...

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Uncategorized Sep 03, 2021

Identifying corporate prospects is a little like prospecting for alluvial gold.  You can’t just expect to walk up any old mountain river and low and behold, ‘there’s gold in them there hills!’  You need knowledge and history of the terrain, as well as the geology.  You need to have the right equipment and approach in the right season (when the water is low, and gold is easier to access). And you need three more things – preparedness to work hard, the ability to think on your feet and a dollop of good luck. 

When I first started working in corporate partnerships, in 1991 at the NSPCC in London, I was an enthusiastic but green prospector. I was fortunate to be representing a cause and charity that was well renowned and that helped, as many corporate prospects came to us. But boy did I waste time! 

When I came to Australia I truly saw the corporate sector as a mountain. One single mountain.  And realising that there were...

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Uncategorized Aug 10, 2021

A business partnership is a little like a marriage – there is usually a common purpose, shared values, collaboration, and mutual benefit. And a whole lotta love. Partnerships (and indeed marriages) often fail when there’s no mutual trust or give & take.

All partnerships work well when each partner brings something of value to the other.  Especially a corporate-cause partnership. And yet many non-profits approach a company inviting them to become a ‘partner’ when they don’t have clarity on what they can actually offer to a company, or brand. Warm fuzzies? Great stories for social media? Making a difference? All that’s lovely, but it’s not very tangible and hard to value so it won’t cut it with hard-nosed marketers, strategic CSR managers or bottom-line-focused CEO’s. Especially in the current tough economic environment.

This month our students are finalising their Assets Inventory, a technique I developed some years ago...

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program Jul 06, 2021

You’ve probably heard of the good ol’ SWOT analysis. A business imperative that’s one of the first things you’re often taught in any sort of business/marketing/communication course. 

For those unaccustomed, a SWOT is a technique used to help an organisation identify their Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats, often related to competitors or feasibility planning.

Whilst a useful and insightful tool, the common pitfall with a SWOT is that it gets completed, filed on an organisations’ sharedrive, never to be touched, looked at, or reviewed again.  This is often because it can be quite a confronting exercise, and it’s human nature to avoid things which are hard!  Students in the BePartnerReady.com® program this year have just completed their SWOT, but our version is a SWOTA, with an all-important A for Action for each category.  The A turns an insightful but confronting document into problem-solving plan of action....

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