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Creating Partnership Synergy: The Critical Role of Community Stakeholders

JHHSA, Vol. 26 No. 1, (2003)

While there are compelling reasons for professionals in health and
human services administration to collaborate with other stakeholders in
the community, the experience with such partnerships thus far has
generated more frustration than results. Recent research on partnership
synergy—a key indicator of a successful collaboration process—
suggests that many of these partnerships are inadvertently compromi-
sing their own success by the way they involve community stake-
holders. Applying research findings to current practice, this article
shows how the ability of a partnership to understand and address
complex problems—and sustain interventions over time—is related to
who is involved in the partnership, how community stakeholders are
involved, and the leadership and management of the partnership. The
article addresses key challenges that health and human services admi-
nistrators face when they seek to optimize the role of community
stakeholders in partnership.

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