Collaboration on Common Ground

Leadership By: Karla Taylor

Joint ventures with other organizations can be terrific—or terrible. Two veterans of good and bad collaborations share advice on how to make them work, plus two hands-on exercises to check compatibility and your own gut instincts.

A few years ago, executives from the Fort Collins (Colorado) Area Chamber of Commerce and Fort Collins Board of Realtors realized their organizations shared common ground. For example, they both believed that local businesses and citizens needed clearer insights into the highly active Fort Collins City Council. So, just before a 2009 election, the two organizations took the lead on sponsoring a city council candidate forum. The forum packed in 300 people wanting to learn about the contenders who aspired to shape the city's future....