Why and when you should consider …

Multi-stakeholder events

Why bring together people from different organizations?

Imagine people from different organizations  thinking and acting together to combine their strengths and agree on how they are going to work together to achieve their common goals.

This is powerful stuff.IMG_0832

When should you have a multi-stakeholder event?

  • When you need to reach a common understanding of the challenges you are facing
  • When you want to achieve a shared goal that individual organizations can’t achieve in isolation
  • When you want to change how the organizations are working together

What are some common obstacles to collaboration?

  • Lack of trust based on past history, cultural differences, etc.
  • Competition for resources, particularly in foundation support
  • Not in agreement on OTHER issues the organizations work on
  • Differences in the resources, and clout of different organizations
  • Inability to make decisions effectively

What needs to happen to have a successful event?

  • Broad agreement on the purpose and desired outcomes of the event
  • All the research and analysis needed to make data-driven decisions
  • A willingness to let the facilitator stretch the group with new approaches and interventions
  • An agenda that surfaces issues, provides tools to work through them, and gets the results you want
  • Follow up work to implement decisions and complete next steps


Networks that work: a practitioners guide to managing networked action, Paul Vandeventer, President & CEO, Community Partners

Facilitator’s Guide to Participatory Decision-making, Sam Kaner, New Society Publishers.

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