Partnerships

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In my book, partnership is when two individuals or entities work together towards a common goal.  In real life you look at partnership with friends, family or your spouse.  The relationship is unconditional and the expectation of support is mutual.  The summation of two is more than the simple addition of  individuals.  Partnerships ensure that we complement and supplement each other in all our efforts.

Now if we look at partnerships at an entity level, it is the symbiosis of two organisations to leverage on each other strengths.  It could be with a business goal or even with a social objective.  Partnerships ensure that the entities are able to enable each other to succeed.  History is evidence to successful partnerships between companies in the corporate sector and other sectors.

In today’s world, we also see partnerships between two countries.  It could be technological partnership, social  or any other field of common interest.  When multiple countries join hands it may end up as multilateral colloboration among those countries.  The success of partnership depends on mutual respect for each other’s strength and ability to give as much as your receive.

Interestingly, partnerships at individual, company level or country level are based on similar principles.  The first principle of partnership is the choice of the partner.  If you have to fully thrive on the benefits of a partnership, you have to choose the right partner for setting up for success.  A simple example could be the choice of your partner in a team sport like tennis.  If you choose a partner who complements your strengths and manages your weakenesses, then you are sure to succeed.

The second principle of partnership is mutual trust.  No partnership in the world can succeed unless they trust each other unconditionally.  After you have selected your partner, you need to ensure that your trust unconditionally.  The moment one of the partners seeds mistrust, the partnership is doomed to fail.  History is witness to successful and failed partnerships in the corporate sector.  If we examine the reasons for success or failiure, trust would be a defining factor in all such cases.

The third principle of a great partnership is giving your best and enabling the other partner to succeed.  This is true at individual, organisational or country level.  The best of partnerships thrive when they give their best and enable each other to succeed.  We can examine this character in all successful partnerships.  We will find that the more you give, the more likely you will reap the benefit of the partnership.

Thus, partnerships thrive on choice, trust and giving.  It is equally true at individual, organisational or country level.  It may be worthwhile to mention that none of us as individuals can succeed in society without establishing partnerships.  If married, you thrive only when you are able to complement your spouse to succeed.  It is equally true in companies and nations.

It is time to partner .

S Ramesh Shankar

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