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Collaboration: It’s all about trust

Phil Maynard, the Top Community Contributor in the Charity Learning Awards, says great collaboration means making yourself vulnerable, and that takes trust. Read on for his advice on making the most of collaboration.

What have been the benefits of being part of the Charity Learning Consortium community?

Over the last year, being a member of the Consortium has enabled me to make some great contacts. Not only have I had some great conversations within the quarterly members’ meetings, I’ve been able to meet up with other members in between to share knowledge, skills, and experience. For me, this is what the Consortium is all about. Enabling us to share and learn from each other for the benefit of our organisations and our personal learning journeys.

What advice would you give to L&D professionals that are new to the Consortium – how can they make the most of the community?

For anyone new joining the Consortium, I’d say ‘get stuck in, connect with others, and bring your wider team long’. For many, the primary purpose of the Consortium is the online learning management system. This sometimes leads to members not making full use of the members meetings and other opportunities to share and connect. However, it’s at these moments where the real magic happens. The members meetings are already made up of L&D professionals, content creators, and those with a more technical role. I’d therefore encourage new members to embrace this and see the members meetings as an opportunity to bring staff from different functional areas to engage in the conversations, and benefit from the opportunities that the mix of knowledge and skills bring. The Consortium isn’t just for Moodle and it’s not just for its conference!

What’s the secret to collaboration?

Collaboration is all about a willingness to be vulnerable, a willingness to share with others, and a belief that you can do more working with others. I don’t think there’s a secret but I do think there are many reasons why collaboration doesn’t happen. Not knowing who to talk to, not sure where to start, uncertainty of what you have to offer – and probably many others. The secret is to realise that everyone else is having the same challenges, and that collaboration can only happen when someone takes the initiative. That person can be you! Our role as members within the Consortium is to make the most of the opportunities we’re given to connect with others. Collaboration needs trust. Trust comes from relationships and shared experience. The Charity Learning Consortium members meetings are the perfect place to start this journey.

About Phil

Phil Maynard is the Global Digital Workplace Lead at World Animal Protection. With a passion to help people and organisations reach their full potential, Phil is especially interested in looking at how communities can use technology to connect and share learning – both inside and across organisations. He won the Charity Learning Award for Top Community Contributor in 2017 and again in 2018. Read more from Phil Maynard on the Charity Learning website here

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