“If I have seen further, it is by standing on the shoulders of giants.” – Isaac Newton
However large or small we think we are; we all have something unique to bring to new conversations. People inspire people every day, and we believe it is this inspiration and passion for change that allows us to have interesting conversations that lead to high impact projects.
PNE is an example of this. On a superficial level, the two organisations appear as competitors: both working with communities to build entrepreneurial skills. However, a conversation between the two business leaders, Charlotte Windebank from FIRST and Tracey Moore from PNE, ignited a mutual passion to work with the region’s young people, engaging them in sustainable business activities.
Lucy Batley delved into this relationship with a ‘warts and all’ panel discussion at last month’s Dynamo conference to talk about the success of their joint project Green for Go!. Lucy explored the partnership journey shared by FIRST, a six-year-old company and PNE, a successful forty-year-old enterprise agency. Clearly defining each partner’s area of expertise, clear communication and sharing values meant the project had real impact. The inter-college competition saw 271% increase in students reporting they felt very empowered to help solve problems like climate change.
Working together generates creativity and innovation as seen in the entrepreneurial partnership between Peter Woods and the University of Sunderland. The collaboration meant Peter could start his new business designing and developing edible labels. With high levels of obesity in the region,and thanks to the support of the Sunderland University graduates, Peter is heading in the right direction to drastically change the way we buy food.
More recently, Durham based DVC roofing and Tyneside based GiveToLocal have joined forces to secure a positive future for the region’s community sport clubs, at a time when grassroots sport needs it the most. GiveToLocal, with the support of their partners, aim to put an additional £10million into grassroots sport annually helping the region be healthier.
Alongside food labels and community sport, Teesside based Rounton Coffee pledged to provide the NHS with 20,000 cups of coffee with the support of Endeavour Partnership. The goal was achieved by the end of July 2020 alongside the creation of a new blend of coffee, purely for NHS key workers across Teesside.
Working with others who have the same value systems creates wider impact, knowledge transfers and more value for customers.
10 Questions: Caroline Theobald
Caroline, FIRST’s Chair was interviewed by North East Times Magazine recently sharing how she has spent her career connecting North East business people and is passionate about creating commercial and life opportunities. She was awarded a CBE for services to business and entrepreneurship in 2016 and is a lifetime holder of the Queen’s Award for Enterprise. Read the full article here.
The fine art of working with other people
Lucy and Charlotte talk about working with others in more detail in their February podcast. Charlotte talks about the collaboration with PNE and they both share their thoughts on how wonderful relationships may take time, but are so so worth it.
New team member
This July, the team at FIRST welcomed Sam Gallilee as the new Operations Manager. Sam has 20 years experience working across the education and youth sector for school trusts, local councils and national charities. Sam’s passion ensures all of FIRST’s projects create meaningful experiences for young people, early stage founders and young professionals. Sam is really looking forward to getting involved with the entrepreneurial skill development initiatives lined up for 2020/21, as well as working alongside a fun and vibrant team.
For hand picked events from the North East ecosystem, see our events calendar here.
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