“From this relationship, which we have spent a lot of time cultivating mutual respect and understanding, we are now working with another university developing a suite of materials for a fellow RAiSE authority.
“Effective networking, which involves more listening than asking, is a strategic investment in the depth and breadth of current and potential relationships.
“It is about mutual offering of support. Many of the partners we work with will check in on all manner of educational outreach, not just directly RAiSE activities. We appreciate their trust in us and know this cultivates commitment to our programme and objectives.
“It is through conversations which are open and flexible that opportunities flow. Renewable energy company Quaybridge wanted to work with schools. With them, we identified that there was a lack of awareness of the diversity of roles relating to wind farms, and issues with gender balance of the workforce within the sector. Through this process, we have moved from an initial, welcome, resource focus, to the company developing an interactive website with child-friendly graphics showcasing the careers and pathways related to the renewables sector.
“I value the time these companies and organisations have committed and want to ensure they, and the practitioners and young people, are getting the most from the opportunity. We want them to share our objectives and feel pride in the part they’re playing in developing our young people. To achieve these goals, partnerships must be treated as respected, invested relationships.”