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Stellar Partnerships

Liverpool F.C. 1

Lessons from Liverpool F.C. for corporate partnerships

I’m a born and bred Scouser and have followed Liverpool for my whole life. I sing ‘You’ll Never Walk Alone’ to my daughter every night as her lullaby. I still get up at 2am, 3am or 4am to watch the important games. You get it right? It’s in my blood. This morning Liverpool finally won the Premier League -yaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay! It’s been the elusive title they haven’t won until now. We’ve won everything else, multiple times, but since the Premier League began it has not been ours.

There are a few (tongue in cheek) similarities between Liverpool’s success and corporate partnerships.

The manager keeps changing

Liverpool have had 4 different managers in the past 10 years. Sound familiar? Fresh faces, new ideas and plans. Some of them were really great and some of them were a little lacking but my love for the team and the club remained. So many partnership managers are deeply passionate about their cause and stick with it through the highs and lows of management changes.

They almost got the title and then there was a slight slip

How many times have you been super enthusiastic about the potential of a partnership. Then it falls over at the last minute. Your contact leaves, there is change in CEO, the company starts restructuring. It’s super disheartening. In 2014, I had faith that Liverpool would win the Premier League that year. That all came tumbling down when Steven Gerrard slipped over and enabled the other team to score. We lost the game. We lost the title. Of course, there are 38 premier league games played in a season. That one mistake didn’t cost the title just as one change won’t cost you a partnership but it will certainly feel like it.

It takes the whole team to win

It takes the whole team to win. The quality of the current team, their effort and superb skills have seen them bring this title home. Yes, there will be star players but just like partnerships it takes the whole team. Unless of course you count our Champions League win in 2005. Liverpool were 3-0 down until 6 minutes before the end of the game. In that match, Steven Gerrard almost singlehandedly won the match. I know many very talented and passionate corporate partnership managers who are operating in the exact same way.

They’ve succeeded in adversity

Even through the season being postponed in March, the players being in lockdown and all of the other joys that Covid-19 has thrown at them, they’ve done it. They’ve won. It is really well deserved, as are the wins around corporate partnerships during this time. It’s a testament to all of you wonderful partnership managers that your partners are stepping up and continuing to support your organisations. Well done to those of you who are reaping the rewards of your strong relationships even whilst going through a pandemic.

I’m off for some celebratory champagne to toast my wonderful team. I hope you have some corporate partnership wins to celebrate too. Cheers (clink clink those glasses)!!