We know… it can be tough to find a good business partner. Let alone one that shares the same values as your sustainable nonprofit organization.
But… the time you’ll spend doing so is definitely worth it! So where do we start? Well, the most important first step when writing a nonprofit partnership agreement is outlining what you offer and what you hope to gain from the partnership. Once you know that, you can search for the right business partner and start hammering out an agreement that will be a perfect fit!
So don’t give up! Our nonprofit consulting agency is giving you our guide on how to find the perfect partnerships and write a mutually beneficial nonprofit partnership agreement. Now… let’s get to it!
Characteristics of a Good Nonprofit Partnership Agreement
We all want to do things right the first time and get frustrated when we don’t. We know because we’re guilty of it too. So, when creating a nonprofit partnership agreement, make sure you check off the following items:
1. Working together offers mutual benefits — Both parties can reap rewards from the arrangement! Donating money, time, or resources to a good cause is always rewarding, and businesses can gain visibility and positive publicity from these collaborations. So be sure to explore all the possibilities of what your company can offer!
2. Features brand/mission alignment — It’s important for you to consider if the organizations are compatible. This means that their branding is consistent and that their missions align with each other. For example, a conservation charity would be a great partner for a company that makes camping supplies or rents kayaks and canoes to vacationers. Both organizations share a common goal of preserving the environment!
3. Includes clear communication — Communication is key in any relationship — this is especially true for partnerships! Without good communication, things can quickly fall apart. We believe it’s important to be clear on what each party expects to gain from the arrangement from the start. Maybe your organization is looking for donations, volunteer hours, or corporate sponsorship for an event. Whereas, the business owner who agrees to a partnership may want free advertising and a boost to their public image. Whatever the case may be, both parties should have a clear understanding of what’s expected!
You’ve got a good match if you’ve checked the boxes above, so now we want to make sure all expectations are clearly captured to keep things running smooth.
Define Expectations, Timelines, and Deliverables
This is where you should write down what each party’s contribution will be. At this point, the partnership agreement becomes more of an action-oriented document rather than one that defines or negotiates terms; so it needs clarity too! Make sure there aren’t any surprises in writing up these agreements and remember to clarify all promises before signing off on anything final — just like every good relationship deserves some effort from both parties involved, so does the partnership!
One of the best ways to make sure that both parties are clear on what needs to be done and when is by including a time-bound element in your agreement. This can include anything from an obligation for one party to complete a task before a specific date, all the way down to specific tasks/deadlines set during different periods throughout each day — you decide how much detail works best!
Nonprofit Consulting on Partnerships and Strategy
With so many options out there, it’s not easy to find the right nonprofit or business partner, let alone getting the perfect nonprofit partnership agreement on the first try! KM Clark Consulting Group has helped many sustainable nonprofits forge partnerships, and we’re here to help you too. We have experience with sustainable nonprofits of all shapes and sizes, so don’t hesitate to reach out if you need help finding a partner or want some nonprofit consulting on how best to market your organization. Contact us to find out what we can do for you today!