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Partnerships and networks in work with young people
Partnerships and networks in work with young people

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3.3 Partnership working skills

It is people who sit down together, not organisations, and how we perceive different organisations is influenced by the behaviour, personalities and interpersonal skills of those who work for them.

One of the complications of working in partnership is that there may be no formal leader:

Very often what is needed to catalyse collaboration are individuals who are able to ‘champion’ particular causes and motivate others to take collective action. … These leaders find themselves applying their leadership capacity in a new environment, one where hierarchies have been replaced by networks and inter-organisational reliance and it is not possible to lead simply by virtue of one’s formal authority in a unitary bureaucracy.

(Sullivan and Skelcher, 2002, p. 104)

Many of the skills in partnership will be common to other areas of your practice. For example, good communication is key in partnerships, as it is in work with young people and colleagues. You have existing skills that you can build on.