You can't do it all on your own.
As the mission minded leader that you are, the idea of teaming up with another company can sound empowering or exciting, but sometimes it feels downright intimidating! I’m sure you have already seen the impact your dream has had on others around you. As you dream & do, chase and conquer, you inspire others to do the same. I truly believe inspiring one another and being inspired by one another is what real living is all about.
Being one of the many product makers in my market arena, I mindfully aim to encourage and support other newer and established makers alike in this business. Collaborating is a big gesture towards your mission to support other brands. It says much more than “I like what you do”. It is actually saying, “Let’s be partners by association!” Such a gesture can be a simple reaching out to other like-minded business to see how you can come together to have greater impact. Perhaps teaming up to host a local event or coming out with a collaborative limited edition product is a great start to showcase you businesses while simultaneously bolstering each others hard work. As plenty as the possibilities in your mind might be at this moment, be mindful that who you team up with, makes all the difference in the world too.
Dear Maker, don't be afraid to ensure each collaborative member’s vision compliments the other participants and serves a purpose in the mission of the project. I don't recommend naively inviting everyone to join in, but rather set up a certain team for each fitting project. You can have as many collaborative events and projects as your schedule will allow. Just makes sure each one makes sense for your brand and all the brands involved from start to finish. It wouldn’t make sense to compromise your mission for a fun project and what’s more, you could lose your loyal follower’s attention and regard in the process of creating ambiguity.
How to know who is in and who is where.
Just like the business of your dreams, every single mission you set out on must have a purpose--even the small collaborative endeavors. First thing, I would lay out a clear picture of what you are setting out to accomplish and where each participant’s strengths can make a difference in the outcome. Divide up the responsibilities and areas of shared agenda. Just like the operation plan you have for your team, all missions and plans must have a clearly stated start, middle and end.
Set boundaries and expectations in place ahead of time. No one should begin work until all details and positions are hashed out. Likewise, no one should go rogue and do extra or less work than what was agreed upon. A healthy foundation is what created that desirable united front. Everyone loves to see other helping each other out, boosting each other up & in general, supporting each others hard work and efforts.
Market opportunity & the united front that brings it home.
We are better together. All of us--you and your team, you and your fellow makers. Not one of you is the same and not one of you could fully replace the other. In my humble experience, we are ten times stronger when we take advantage of each others hard work by coming together for a united effort. Enjoy watching your target audiences--which hopefully compliment and overlap each other by the way-- enjoy being introduced to a brand new product they might not have had thought to try before. The market awareness and strength you and your collaborative team creates with your collaboration and will surely keep them talking!
Grab a copy of A Makers Guide to read a few of of own collaboration experiences along with many other helpful tips on how to navigate this exciting phase!
Until next time.
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