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Is collaboration the new key to success?

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By definition, business collaboration is creating purposeful connections, both internally and externally, to achieve goals or solve problems through sharing varied skill sets, strengths, and perspectives. 

 

The Chambers of Commerce Business togetherness national campaign up and down the UK, highlights the benefits of collaboration.  The chambers continue to highlight the importance of people at the heart of any business and the challenges business owners face in finding the right people to support growth and success.

 

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As sole traders or independent business owners, it’s easy to feel isolated at times.  Since launching The Sussex Collaborative, the value we have experienced from collaborating has included:

 

  • Fresh inspiration – It is easy to get caught in your own bubble and miss out on new or alternative knowledge, particularly when our news feeds are curated for us via social media.  So being able to get other’s perspectives has offered fresh perspectives to take into our own circles.

  

  • Staying up to date with economic trends – with each of us having extensive networks across a variety of businesses, spanning multiple industries, its been invaluable to gain insights into how others are adapting to operating in business during 2020, giving benchmarks to measure our own performance.

 

  • Problem solving – No one can dispute the last 5 months have been tough as independent business owners, so to be able to discuss and share innovative ways to overcome challenges has been invaluable.

 

  • Growing and strengthening our networks – We’ve defiantly found the phrase “collaboration is multiplication” to be true, with each of us sharing contacts and referrals within our respective networks.

 

Collaboration is a founding principal of The Sussex Collaborative our top tips for effective collaboration include:

 

  1. Choose partners with similar values and goals – to ensure positive interactions which enhance your business development, whilst protecting your reputation and values.

 

  1. Find opportunities for mutual growth - Collaborating with overlapping businesses can be a valuable marketing tool and a short-cut to reaching a larger audience and gaining more customers.

 

  1. Collaborate based on the value to your customers –  This will ensure success in driving growth from any relationship, as potential new customers will recognise the benefits which in turn builds trust with them.

 

  1. Look out for learning opportunities -   Some of the most successful collaborations are those that bring together different skill sets and strengths. 

 

  1. Make connections outside your existing network – partnerships with companies whose businesses complement your own, can open up opportunities for innovation and diversification so you reach a wider audience.

 

  1. Don’t be afraid to ask for help or advice - we’ve all benefited from those times when an extra pair of hands or another head, has provided a much-needed boost to overcome a challenge. 

 

In conclusion, we absolutely believe we are stronger together in business.  We have extensive business experience to draw on and would be happy to jump in to support any business owner who needs an extra pair of hands.

 

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