Collaboration aims to include multiple stakeholders in a collective conversation, to develop a broader understanding of the problem and solutions and to find ways forward to achieve shared goals. This big-picture approach enables groups that might not have previously worked together – and might even have been in opposition or competition – to join forces in creating resolution and new directions.
Collaboration is not a short-term, easy solution, you need to go in with a long term mindset. The start up phase is especially important. Time and effort spent planning, organising and building an agreement in starting out are essential for achieving goals. Five steps to help develop a well-structured, well-managed collaboration are outlined in this fact sheet.
- Take the time to understand issues.
- Compose membership strategically.
- Foster communication and consensus-building.
- Nurture positive relationships by making sure people are listened to, and heard.