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Creating win-win-win scenarios through partnerships – DFAT Big Meet 2021

"The Big Meet 2021 -- International Business Engagement For Changing Times"

Yesterday, our team attended the Big Meet 2021 – DFAT’s annual aid supplier conference for commercial development suppliers looking to collaborate, engage, network, and get updates on the implementation of DFAT’s development program.

There were some interesting presentations and discussions around the big themes of COVID-19, critical infrastructure, telecommunications and connectivity, and in-country experiences. Another theme that was perhaps less emphasised but came up throughout the day was partnerships.

We’re big advocates for strategic partnerships – they make sense on so many levels. We believe partnering with like-minded organisations and individuals to deliver on our client needs creates win-win-win scenarios. Finding a partner that has the same vision as you, but different strengths, is hugely advantageous to delivering on a goal or project. Sustineo leverages this approach through both partner organisations and a network of close associates with whom we share core values and work with over multiple projects.

We’re talking about proper, relational partnerships here, not just a transactional agreement for a particular project. Long-lasting and mutually beneficial strategic partnerships require care and maintenance, much like friendships! When we partner with another firm or an individual, we’re in it for the long haul, and we work openly and honestly to make the most of it for everyone involved.

One of our long-term partners is Dignity Pasifik, a research firm based in Solomon Islands and led by Ruth Maetala. Her team’s experience in brokering community engagement has enabled us to collect high-quality field data in culturally sensitive and contextually appropriate ways, while we have provided support to Ruth in the establishment and growth of her firm. Acknowledging our vulnerability and openly engaging with Ruth has led to a productive partnership for both of our organisations, and excellent data for our clients; it’s a win-win-win.

A core part of our approach has always been to build relationships that extend beyond the scope of a project or a particular commercial opportunity. In doing so, we have built trust and respect for each other, which has meant more cohesive, efficient, and effective project implementation.

Drawing on our experience with Dignity Pacific and other in-country partners such as Anglo Pacific Research in Papua New Guinea, Sustineo is developing a Pacific Partnership Strategy that will shape how we approach and collaborate with in-country partners when delivering project work into the future.

While the Strategy is still under development, we’re excited to share it and hope that it could pave the way for other firms and individuals to connect and make the most of the resources and thought leaders across the Pacific. It’s all about local people leading the changes they want to see in their communities. Watch this space for more information about the Strategy.

We look forward to following up on some new connections made at the Big Meet, and perhaps forging new partnerships for future projects to create more win-win-win scenarios. If you would like to explore partnership opportunities, our inbox is always open:

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