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Tool 12

Align with Partners

Are current and potential partners a good match?

Evaluate the goals and values of collaborators to determine which partnerships are a good fit for your organization.

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Download a PDF for the Align with Partners instructions and tips.

Tool 12: Align with Partners


This tool is designed to help evaluate how a potential collaborator’s values and goals match with your own—do they share a commitment to racial equity, is this evidenced in their work? Tracking these alignments—or misalignments—can be helpful in discerning whether a proposed partnership is a good fit for your organization. It is also a way to hold others in positions of power accountable. Completing this tool is a good precursor to discussions with prospective partners. Use our tool worksheet to do this review systematically. 

Developed by Urban Institute

Follow-Up Questions

Once you have reviewed your partnerships, ask:

  • Is a project with medium alignment focused in an equity area we have less programming in? If so, it might be worth connecting with the partner to try to achieve high alignment.

  • Do we need a process for adjusting (or even ending) a partnership with low alignment?

  • How does our work impact the work of other existing or potential partners in the community?

  • Are there opportunities for strategic partnerships to create shared outcomes, values, and activities with other organizations or individuals in our community?

  • What do others have to gain by partnering with us? What do we offer others? Advocacy and influence count.

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