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									                                   Partnering Skills for
                                   Strategic Engagement

     Role Play: Phases 1-3
                  12-14 November 2007
                      Panama City

Joanna Pyres                                   David Murphy & Marti Ostrander
The Partnering Initiative                      UN System Staff College
info@thepartneringinitiative.org               skills@unssc.org
            Positions vs. Interests
Position – the first demand of someone, often vocal and
self-centred (i.e., not considerate of other people)
Interest – the deeper motivations (fear and needs)
underlying what people say they want.

 Interest-Based Negotiation
                                                Identifying peoples underlying
                              Positions         fears and needs creates
                                                more room to explore a wider
                                                range of solutions from
                                                which to compile a solution
                         Individual interests   that satisfies the most
                                                number of people.
                         Shared interests
       Interest-based Negotiation
Builds strong working relationships
Addresses underlying interests (not positions)
Widens the options for finding agreement
Involves choosing your words carefully
Reaching agreement that satisfies the
interests and adds value for all parties
Confirming the agreement in an appropriate
          If You Get Stuck…
Work in pairs or sub-groups rather than big group
Look for more compromises (but will not harm relationships)
Agree not to address a particular activity
through the partnership
Agree an interim measure (temporary solution or ‘pilot’
to test something)
Agree to monitor a contentious strategy
Include some ‘quick wins’ that will satisfy
those who are reluctant
Call in an external / expert help!
          Role Play: Developing Skills

  Activity:                      Skills Development:
1 GETTING STARTED:               To practice critical early-
  Scoping & Building Phase       stage internal & external
2 BROKERING COMMITMENT:          To map resources &
  Managing & Maintaining Phase   build competencies as
                                 a partnership broker
3 FACING A CRISIS:               To understand good
  Reviewing & Revising Phase     partnering behaviour in
       The Purpose

To build empathy and insight into the values and
characteristics of different sectors
To demonstrate the importance and value of good
listening and observation skills
To develop better brokering, facilitation and
negotiation skills
To explore the changing nature of a partnership
over time
        The Process
Working in mixed groups
Each person allocated a role within the
partnership case study – and sometimes observe
Each session will focus on a different phase in the
life of the partnership
The 3 sessions will vary in style, but each session
will involve:
Briefing / Preparation / Role Play / De-brief
This exercise is not assessed, it is to practice
       ‘Do’s’ for Role Play
Read your role brief carefully
Try to understand the priorities
and drivers for the organisation
you represent in your role
Understand the specific instructions
in your brief (for each exercise)
Try and really imagine your mood,
attitude and expectations in the
situation you are about to enter
       ‘Don’ts’ for Role Play

Don’t exaggerate your role or play a

Don’t discuss in detail project technicalities -
instead keep focus on partnering process
          The Scenario
IPSO is a (fictional)            Prospective partners are:
proposed alliance of
6 global/regional
organizations               ACTA global         UN Panama-
                            oil company         based regional
To identify the most        based in Brazil     office for LAC
innovative and inclusive
                            HSN Regional        OIRAL
policy options on
                            liaison office of   Regional inter-
human security
                            EU-based            governmental
To accelerate and           International
strengthen global action    NGO
on human security           GSU             AEPYME
To bring together diverse   Vancouver-based Independent
actors                      university      Central American
Role Play 1: Getting Started

       Phase 1:
    Negotiation Skills
           1. Getting Started

Purpose: To practice critical early stage negotiation
Story Brief:
  In advance of first official meeting of prospective
  IPSO partners, the UN Agency has arranged for
  representatives of the 6 organizations (including
  the UN) to meet in a sequence of ‘bi-laterals’. The
  objective of these meetings is to ensure that all
  have a better understanding of each other’s
  values and priorities for IPSO. It is felt that this
  will work better if each organization has an
  internal discussion first to clarify its own position.
        Exercise 1: Conversations
ACTA    Isabel     Trevor    Julie     Mario

OIRAL   Amelia     Aminta    Dale      Carolina

UN      Peter      Danila    Gail      Carla

AEPYME John        Angelica Kent       Fernando

HSN     Sergio     Halide    Maria P   Filippo

GSU     Victoria   Gonzalo   Angelo    Maria A
       Tips for Partnering Conversations
Manage the conversation well – What are your
questions seeking to achieve? Are you really
listening to the answers you are being given?
Be prepared to share your own ‘underlying
issues’? What are they? How can you best
present them?
Use ‘open’ and ‘closed’ questions as appropriate
End the conversation well – agreeing conclusions
and issues still to be addressed
             Adapted from: Tool 5 in THE PARTNERING TOOLBOOK
      Exercise 1: Debrief

How helpful was the internal discussion?
How far did your partnering negotiation get?
What worked? What did not work?
What might you (in character) have
done differently?
Were the objectives of the meetings realized?
Role Play 2: Brokering Commitment

            Phase 2:
        Brokering Skills &
        Resource Mapping
    What do we mean by ‘resources’?

Based on the partnerships you are /
     have been involved with
  what constitutes a ‘resource’?
          Give examples.
       Resource Maps Build…
Imaginative responses (i.e., you may not
need cash or as much as you think)
Equity between the partners
(i.e., everyone’s contribution is valued)
Partner commitment & accountability
(i.e., going beyond talking)
Measurable contributions (i.e., testing out
as you go along whether or not partners
actually deliver on their promises)
           Role Play 2: Brokering Commitment
  1. To understand the skills / competencies
  required in a partnership ‘broker’
  2. To practice collaborative resource-mapping

Story Brief:
  This meeting has been called to try and commit
  the partners to the provision of further resources
  for the partnership. It needs to be both a
  ‘brainstorm’ (i.e., What resources will be needed?)
  and a ‘mapping exercise’ (i.e., Who can bring
             Exercise 2: Groups / Roles
 GROUPS/     A         B           C
             Isabel    Julie       Mario
             Amelia    Aminta      Carolina
             Gonzalo   Angelo      Maria A
             John      Kent        Fernando
             Halide    Sergio      Filippo
 UN Rep 1
             Peter     Gail        Carla
  UN Rep 2
             Trevor    Angelica    Maria P
             Danila    Dale        Victoria
            What is ‘Facilitation’?
Facilitation is the management of a group process
Involving people with different perspectives.
It is likely to involve:
   Balancing sensitivity with determination
   Managing divergent views / expectations
   Knowing when (and when not) to ‘let things run’
   Working continuously to achieve pre-agreed goals
       Exercise 2: Debrief

How useful was the external UN
‘brokering’ role?
Did the meeting achieve its goals?
What worked and what did not?
What skills does an effective broker
need to have?
   Role Play 3:

      Phase 3:
  Promoting Good
Partnering Behaviour
                3. Facing a Crisis
Purpose: To build understanding of what constitutes good ‘partnering behaviour’
    Competitor of ACTA – NPCC a large Chinese oil company –
    recently joined the UN Global Compact with particular interest in
    human rights. Although no specification as to involvement of
    other oil companies included in IPSO Charter and discussions
    on topic always left the door open for such companies, concrete
    proposal has created tension in partnership.
    To add to the tension, individuals currently representing six
    founding partners at IPSO Secretariat are not ones who were
    originally involved in negotiations that led to signing of IPSO
    Charter and formation of Secretariat.
    The task is to arrive at a decision about whether or not to agree
    to NPCC becoming a core member of the partnership.
            Exercise 3: Groups / Roles
            DAVID       JOANNA     MARTI







       Exercise 3: Debrief

What was evidence of ‘bad’ partnering behaviour?
What was evidence of ‘good’ partnering behaviour?
What can UN staff and agencies do to promote
good partnering behaviour?
How does a partnership deal with individuals or
organizations who behave badly?
        Signs of a Good Partnership
A level of trust is established – and other partnering
principles (e.g., equity, transparency and mutual
benefit) are evident
It is possible for partners to be honest with each
Partners try and help meet each other’s goals /
concerns (not just their own)
Partners look at constructive alternatives rather than
stay fixed on the presenting problem
The partnership can survive a crisis

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