Potential partners should consider alternative approaches to meeting their community needs. As exciting and rewarding as partnerships can be, there will be times to say "no" to a potential partner and partnership opportunity. Address the following screening questions early on in your discussions with potential partners. Also, take the time to think through how the proposed partnership could alter the public's perception. Ensure that the partnerships you pursue and engage in demonstrate your leadership and your stewardship of community resources.
- Are our missions aligned?
- Will the partnership build upon our core values and competencies?
- Is the partnership relevant at this point in time?
- Do stakeholders need.want the partnership?
- Will we avoid duplicating services?
- Is the partnership voluntary?
- Is the partnership financially viable?
- Is the partnership equitable?
- Is the partnership sustainable?
- If we don't participate, will someone else?
- Can we determine the value?
- Can we get buy-in?
- Is everything clearly defined and documented?
"Successful community development initiatives go well beyond recreational programming; they involve creating partnerships to engage a wider set of stakeholders in achieving a common goal. By connecting the relationships, skills, and material assets of like minded groups and organizations, a community can reach its goals, while empowering those who live within the community to reach ever higher and become agents for positive change."
- Jodie Adams, Brio2 Solutions; Former Director of Springfield-Greene County Park Board