Partnering is an art as well as a science; and above all a lot of hard work – but as this publication shows it can really make all the difference. As I know from my last job, the headline summary is bang on:
“Partnerships enable cultural organisations to reach broader audiences and increase the quality of their work, but there is a lack of coherence in what is understood by the term ‘partnership’ across the [cultural] sector.”
- Managing differing expectations when working with different partners.
- Managing resources – how to manage resources to get the best from them?
- Doing so much – the sheer volume. Organising it all, getting the relevant information, getting everyone on board and then ensuring that they deliver.
- Being sensitive about the subject – making sure the language is correct. Subtle shifts in knowing how to talk about things.
- Difficulty in maintaining quality across such a large programme with limited staff.
- Others are also doing so much that it can be hard to build publicity. They can feel invisible while there are so many things going on.
- People using platforms to promote their own ends.
This about sums up the perils of cultural partnerships; and indeed pretty much any kind of organisational partnership – internal or external, it takes commitment.
But as I learnt at the British Council, through London 2012, Derry/Londonderry City of Culture, Glasgow 2014 and many others; when the UK educational and cultural sector (with all our peculiarities and personalities) works together – we are truly world class.
And the launch – fittingly partnered with the BBC – was held in a world class venue…