How to set up the perfect work collaboration

Phoebe Dodds

We’ve all heard the saying “collaboration over competition”. As well as being a nice way to approach life, collaborations can actually supercharge your business. At Found and Flourish, we’re all about working together to celebrate each other’s uniqueness — in fact, it’s pretty much the core of our entire community. Let’s take a look at how collaborations can take your business to new heights, and how to set up the perfect partnership depending on your goals.

An easy — and fun — way to reach new audiences

The best thing about running a collaboration with another business owner is that it’s fun! Working for yourself can be lonely at times, and collaborations allow you to expand your horizons and bounce ideas off a like-minded person, something our traditionally employed counterparts sometimes take for granted. Collaborations are a win-win: you get access to your partner’s audience, while they get access to yours. Your audience wins, too, because they’re benefiting from another entrepreneur’s product or expertise. The right collaboration can grow your audience, provide free(ish) marketing, and help you make more money. An example? In 2020, business coach Alice Benham teamed up with mindset coach Chloe Slade to offer 1:1 sessions for people launching a new offering. The combination of strategy with the emotion side of the equation was a winner, and the pair went on to launch another offering together.

How to plan the perfect collaboration

Good news: collaborations aren’t rocket science. They usually develop organically, but if you can’t wait to get started, there are a number of things you can do to get the ball rolling.

1. Think about your goals. What are you trying to achieve here? Common answers include brand awareness, reaching slightly different audiences, and positioning yourself as an expert. If you can, assign numbers to some of these goals. Example: I want to grow my email list to X subscribers.

2. Do your research. In an ideal world, who would you love to collaborate with? Are there any examples of exciting collaborations you’ve seen that have made you think “Ooh, I’d love to do something like that”? Start by listing people you’d love to work with. It’s a good idea to think about people who do something adjacent or complimentary to your business, rather than someone who offers the exact same services or products. Example: if you run a skincare company, think about collaborating with someone who makes candles. If you’re a graphic designer, think about collaborating.

3. Brainstorm possible collaborations. There are endless ways in which you could join forces with like-minded entrepreneurs. Here are some ideas to get your creative juices flowing:

  • You could host an event together.
  • You could start a joint podcast.
  • You could run a content series (think: blog posts, eBooks or Instagram Lives).
  • You could create a product together.
  • You could offer a joint service.
  • You could combine your products to create gift baskets.

4. Reach out! It can feel a little scary to put yourself out there, but it’s well worth it. If you’d like to collaborate with someone you don’t know yet, take the time to build a genuine and authentic relationship with them. Get to know their goals, what they’re interested in, and what their audience needs, and you’ll be in with the best chance of putting forward a collaboration idea that works for everyone. Good luck!

Looking for inspiring like-minded women to collaborate with? Found and Flourish has seen some exciting partnerships form over the years—will you be next?! Join our community and find out more about our community here.

About the Author

Phoebe Dodds

Phoebe is Found & Flourish’s resident Business blogger, she is London-born and Frankfurt-, Paris- and Amsterdam-raised. Combining her Master’s degree in Entrepreneurship with 10 years writing for international publications, she’s the founder of BURO155 and Wellby, helping female entrepreneurs achieve their business goals through strategic online content. Phoebe is also a writer, and has written for outlets including the Huffington Post, the Guardian, the Next Web, For Working Ladies and Restless Magazine.

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