Partnership Broker

For 20 years I worked with an international NGO (non-governmental organisation), the International Business Leaders Forum (IBLF), leading their cross-sector partnership work. During my years with IBLF, I was given carte blanche to develop ideas, tools and techniques that would build capacity around the world and in all three sectors to partner effectively. Much of this material is captured in a series of Partnering Tool Books that are available to download for anyone interested from The Partnering Initiative.

There is much to say about the wide-ranging nature of this partnership work, but my focus has been increasingly on the specific issue of ‘partnership brokering’ – a term created in 1998 when co-authoring a book published by the United Nations Development Programme The Guiding Hand: Brokering Partnerships for Sustainable Development. The term ‘partnership broker’ describes anyone (whether ‘internal’ to one of the partner organisations or ‘external’ operating as an independent specialist) working on behalf of the partnership as a whole to make it efficient and to help optimise its potential.

In 2003, with a colleague (Michael Warner), the first professional Partnership Brokers Training course was launched for those operating in the intermediating role. Since then the scope of work has grown exponentially with more that 160 Partnership Brokers Training courses having been delivered in locations across the globe and, more recently, on line Remote Partnering (link).

There is now a freestanding professional not-for-profit entity – the Partnership Brokers Association (PBA) (link) established in 2012 – that delivers a comprehensive range of training courses, undertakes action research and produces learning case studies into the added value brokers bring to partnerships.

Partnership Brokers Association LogoPBA now has more than 3,000+ alumni (graduates of the training course), 600+ of whom have been formally accredited as partnerships brokers. PBA operates as a distributed entity with no physical office and no employees. An international network of 70+ approved Associates offer a range of partnership brokering services worldwide.

As well as helping to develop the Partnership Brokers Association (as its Strategic Advisor), I also work directly as a partnership broker – particularly in brokering the idea of investing properly in the partnering process to build partnerships that are robust and that lead to transformation and sustainable outcomes.

Moving much of the work on-line since the Covid-19 pandemic, I get involved in designing and delivering: on-line training; workshops; partnership reviews; collaboration strategy-building; case studies and story capture. Most of the partnership brokering work I do is via PBA but you can contact (link) me to discuss options, ideas and possibilities.

Further Resources:

Ros Tennyson CV