Tuesday, 8 November 2011

Is your collaboration SAFE: a simple model for collaborative viability

Post Ken Thompson, Bioteams

Most collaborative ventures don't turn out quite the way we envisage. It would be great if we could determine in advance if a particular collaborative project or joint venture will be worth the required investment. Here is a simple way you can assess the merits of any collaborative endeavour BEFORE you invest time, effort and money in failing to make it work.


The SAFE model of collaborative viability - a summary 

S is for SYNERGY
Is there genuine synergy between the parties? If you all do the same thing or do things which are too diverse to join up then you don't have SYNERGY.

Assuming that there is SYNERGY do the parties actually want to collaborate? If SYNERGY is the mind of collaboration then APPETITE is the heart. You can't have collaboration without APPETITE.

OK so there is SYNERGY and APPETITE but if it now requires monumental effort to collaborate or there are huge practical obstacles to collaboration then it won't happen. Is it Feasible?

Finally you could have the other three things but unless there are some good specific benefits to the parties, preferably economic, then any collaboration is probably not going to be sustainable.

Many thanks to Kathryn Burns of Birmingham City University  who collaborated with me to develop this model. 

If you are a West Midlands business working in the interiors or lifestyle markets and have an idea for a collaboration you'd like to pursue or would just like to know a bit more about how Interiors& Lifestyle Futures could help your business, please call 0121 331 7925 or write to info@ilfutures.co.uk

Don't forget to check out some of Ken's other collaboration models:

The Sustainable Network model 

The Fair Collaboration model

The 3 rings of commitment in any group