Partnership models are the path to prosperity

/t/p/d/Ruth2.jpg

Deputy prime minister Nick Clegg believes he has the answer to creating strong growth for the UK. He suggests that the country needs to become “more of a John Lewis economy” with mass employee share ownership.

The message has global resonance right now. The United Nations has announced that 2012 is an “International Year of Co-operatives” and is aiming to create more co-op and mutual businesses not just in the UK but across the world. The body is running a worldwide summit this year on how to set up such firms.

It isn’t the first time that the UK coalition government has pushed the co-operative model either. The Conservative Co-operative Movement has been running since 2007 and aims to “promote the co-operative ideal” and put forward “alternative models of capitalism in which risk and profit are shared more equitably”.

A new era of partnership is also the theme of our cover story this week, which looks at the world of sport. Rather than being seen as sponsors at an arm’s length, brands want to be strategic partners.

“Sponsorship in its traditional form is dead. You have to come up with something that is an embedded, engaging experience with your partners,” according to Manchester City FC’s head of partnerships Luis Vicente. He points to a relationship with games brand Electronic Arts, which sees the businesses jointly employing staff to develop their mutual goals.

The important element of Manchester City’s new partnership model is that the company is investing money, time and management commitment in this strategy. It is not an afterthought or a bolt-on. It will be interesting to see if more firms are able to follow this path.

Indeed, research from Cass business school claims that employee-owned businesses are better at creating jobs and growing sales during the recession than other firms. “Employees who have a stake in the company they work for are more committed to delivering quality and more flexible in the face of the needs of business,” the study reports.

At a time when we all need to pull together and make the best of 2012’s unpredictable economic situation, any model that uses the brainpower, energy and enthusiasm of every stakeholder within a business seems not only like a good strategy, but a highly necessary one.

Recommended

Michael

Make DM relevant and data laws won’t matter

Michael Barnett

This week I am going to take an unusual step and disagree with our esteemed news editor, Russell Parsons, who argues that direct marketing (DM) needs protection from impending data legislation. Whether marketers like it or not, change is coming and they should innovate rather than burying their heads in the sand. Amendments to EU […]

Russell Parsons

DM needs protection from data laws

Russell Parsons

Despite David Cameron’s heroic/foolhardy (delete according to ideological hue) decision to exercise Britain’s veto and leave the UK on the sidelines looking on when it comes to matters of the continent’s financial future, we remain very much in the European Union and very much subject to its laws and directives. This truism is going to […]

Middle management does contribute to the bottom line

Richard Madden

Middle managers are often the first victims of cost-cutting. But thinning-out this management layer can be a short-sighted move. Middle managers are figures of fun. It goes with the territory. The conflicted behaviour that results from being sandwiched between the needs of a team and the demands of a boss is natural comic material. Watch […]

Comments

    Leave a comment

    Close

    Discover even more as a subscriber

    This article is available for subscribers only.

    Sign up now for your access-all-areas pass.

    If you're an existing paid print subscriber find out how to get access here.

    Subscribers enjoy unlimited access to unrivalled coverage of the biggest issues in marketing, alongside practical advice from the digital experts at Econsultancy.

    With a subscription to Marketing Week Premium you will get full access to:

    > World-renowned columnists

    > Analysis & case studies

    > Exclusive leading-edge insight

    > Carefully curated reports & briefings from Econsultancy

    > Plus, much more including a £300 discount for the Festival of Marketing

    Subscribe now

    Got a question?

    Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3703 or email customerservices@marketingweek.com

    If you are looking for our Jobs site, please click here

    Subscribers enjoy unlimited access to unrivalled coverage of the biggest issues in marketing, alongside practical advice from the digital experts at Econsultancy.

    With a subscription to Marketing Week Premium you will get full access to:

    > World-renowned columnists

    > Analysis & case studies

    > Exclusive leading-edge insight

    > Carefully curated reports & briefings from Econsultancy

    > Plus, much more including a £300 discount for the Festival of Marketing

    Subscribe now