In order to build effective relationships with your key stakeholders, you need to make sure that you are being strategic about creating awareness about the work that you do. Here are 5 lessons shared by Migon Hardie, Executive Director at The FunDza Literacy Trust.
Lesson 1: Have a compelling vision: this helps develop interest and create awareness. If you’re doing something innovative it can be used to a great advantage. It’ becomes a way of looking at an old structural problem from a fresh perspective.
Lesson 2: Build a strong core: Having a strong team helps to build trust. We are constantly marketing the people on our staff to potential funders to show that we did have the necessary skills or expertise to do the work.
Lesson 3: Be effective: Having systems in place ensures that you can manage relationships as well as internal processes.
Lesson 4: Share your stories: While your effective systems can document your progress, your stories can create the awareness and develop the interest that you need to get commitments from funders or bed down partnerships.
Lesson 5: Develop champions: Developing champions speaks to the point of nurturing and securing commitments – these don’t have to be financial, there are lots of opportunities for non-monetary support that are hugely valuable.
Author: Adapted from Mignon Hardie’s Advancement Academy Presentation (2015): Effective Relationship Management – An exploration of stewarding multiple stakeholders while managing your board.