“The biggest sources of opportunity are collaboration and partnership.” – Mark Parker.
What do you think of when you think of powerful partnerships? Do you think of Marvel’s Avengers? Or do you like to stay grounded in realism and admire a collaboration between General Motors and Honda to develop affordable electric vehicles? Or perhaps it’s a more intimate partnership, like Patagonia’s work with Fair Trade USA.
Whatever partnership comes to mind, one thing is for sure—alliances have a significant opportunity. It has been said that magnificent feats can be accomplished by working together. Teamwork does make the dream work, and this is something I can personally attest to.
I recently visited our farmer partners, the Larson family, in Okeechobee, Florida. This multigenerational farmer family built their dairies from the ground up, starting with their grandfather, Red. Over the years, they have established themselves as industry leaders across the country.
On my visit, I was blown away by how intentional the Larson family is with their farms’ sustainability. None of this is by accident. They have dedicated extra resources, in every sense of the word, to making their farm a positive contribution to the environment and to providing healthy, dairy-fresh milk.
When I look at how we will solve these environmental problems, I think we can all agree that no one person or company will do it alone. We need to work together. I am so inspired by the Larson family and proud to work with them because they represent what we can all do if we commit to making change.
Woody said something that stuck out to me, referring to his father: “There are only two ways you become a legend. Either you live a long time or do something legendary. In his case, he’s done both.”
At Brightmark, we’re incredibly fortunate to partner with various organizations and businesses across the board that genuinely want to impact the environment and the societies they serve positively. Many of our partners know we can accomplish even more together than if we walk the path alone.
Some notable organizations that I am proud to say we partner with are:
- RecycleForce: Creating opportunities and giving second chances to formerly incarcerated individuals while also helping the environment by properly recycling electronic waste.
- The Guy Harvey Ocean Foundation: We developed an in-depth Marine Science 101 curriculum that teaches students about the impact of microplastics on the ocean—including using art as one form of education to inspire students to take action. Education is a critical component of creating a circular future. You can download the curriculum by visiting our website here.
- Frost Museum of Science: Our work with Frost focuses on environmental stewardship by working with local communities in Florida to restore and conserve coastal habitats and participating in beach cleanups.
- Net Your Problem: This mission-driven business is owned by a small but mighty group of women working to clean the coasts of abandoned fishing nets. They properly recycle these items and turn them into new, reusable products.
Partnerships are a powerful and strategic way to reach your company’s goals while making a significant impact. When the right partnerships are formed, they can reap incredible benefits for everyone involved and create something unique.
I always keep these thoughts in mind about the best partnership opportunities.
- What is the goal of this partnership?
- Will this partnership amicably benefit both sides?
- What tasks need to be accomplished to partner successfully?
- How can I best support my partner(s)?
I believe that considering all of these questions as your organization looks to develop partnerships can assist your team in making the right decisions to form meaningful relationships with influential organizations.
In the end, partnership opportunities will work best if they’re meant to be. Sometimes the best things happen organically.
Whatever partnerships you form, remember that there’s power in them—especially when you’re following the credo of “Passion. Purpose. People. Planet.” I can only hope we are around long enough to become legendary for our impact and longevity so we can leave it better than we found it.
Here’s to our partners.