In order to commit to common agenda, shared measurement systems and a joint action plan, collaborators need to trust each other, and know that their interests are equally valued and protected. Continuous communication provides the platform for trust to be developed, concerns to be addressed, and ideas to be discussed between organisations that may have previously been in competition.
Building community will and leadership engagement
Continuous communication provides a platform for concerns to be addressed, ideas to be discussed and trust to be developed between organizations that may have previously been in competition.
Consistent and honest communication also assists in the development of a common language, the foundation for creating a common agenda and agreeing on common targets and benchmarks. It also helps maintain and improve collaborative efforts through the sharing of knowledge and the monitoring of results.
When communicating internally, member organizations can choose various channels such as online platforms, face-to-face meetings, teleconferences, and how often.
The way to communicate effectively will change and flow and be re-evaluated in the light of new information and changes in the environment.
However, it is important for all partners to have equal representation and involvement in all interactions, to ensure that decision-making is collaborative and takes into account all members’ point of view.
In fact, listening to the community, and communicating results to the public, is an important component of building and sustaining a successful collective impact initiative as it allows the collaborative to identify the areas they should be targeting, as well as build public support for the collective effort.
Some great examples of communication
A critical part of the continuous communication is reporting progress and impact. Below are some impressive examples of how some Collective Impact initiatives communicate:
- Strive Partnership Report 2012-13
- Boston Opportunity Agenda Report Card 2011
- Boston Opoortunity Agenda_2012_Annual_Report