• Mark Bandalli

Mark Bandalli: I've learnt that... strong relationships are essential in public services

Mark's reflection:



Delivering public services through new and innovative delivery models usually requires some form of legal agreement being in place. One of the key lessons I’ve learnt is that strong relationships are essential in getting the legal agreements over the line.


In my experience, things work best when both parties have a good understanding of the contract, but don’t rely on it to resolve every single issue. Instead, the relationships held between individuals - whether it between commissioner and provider, or front-line staff across different organisations - provide the platform upon which success is built.


The response of public services to the COVID-19 crisis has shown what can be achieved in a very short space of time, under immense pressure. Where I’ve seen things work best is when those leading and delivering services were able to agree quickly on what a coordinated response across a local or regional area should look like. The speed and quality of responses were helped by existing relationships held across organisations.


Any sort of agreement is designed to provide a ‘win-win’ solution to a challenge or problem. I’ve learned that the chances of both sides achieving the success they are looking for hinges of the quality of the relationships that exist. Whether it be managing a bump in the road, or delivering vital services during a pandemic, relationships are essential. Investing the time to develop and nurture them is time well spent.


To learn more about our work on alternative delivery models contact Mark mark@mutualventures.co.uk.


To view more of the reflections from the Mutual Ventures' team click here.


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