This fall, Independent Sector will be releasing Model Partnerships for Impact, a weekly series featuring healthy grantee/funder relationships. Amanda Broun, vice president of programs and practice, and Katie Jones, director of sector advancement and convenings at IS recently previewed this work in Stanford Social Innovation Review.
In the article, Amanda and Katie describe the upcoming series, including the following themes gleaned from 40 interviews of 20 pairs of grantees and funders:
- Partnerships based in learning: A mutual commitment to learning and piloting new approaches. Several interviewees spoke about how performance metrics were often considered a baseline for learning, rather than a punitive aspect of the relationship.
- Shared vision of success: A clear and mutual articulation of what success looks like, agreed on at the onset of a project, was useful when adapting strategies and tactics. In fact, three-fourths of people we interviewed said a shared vision was critical to navigating unexpected hurdles.
- Co-development of plan/program: A plan or project developed together often makes it more comfortable for each partner to proactively offer feedback or elevate challenges. Grantees and funders alike shared how they set the mutual expectation that things will inevitably go wrong in the work, so determining how to diagnose, identify, and act to address those challenges together was always a core element of the relationship.
Read the article on SSIR.org to learn more.