The Partnership Canvas: a new tool for developing partnership business models

Last week’s guest in the Collaborative Business Podcast was Bart Doorneweert. Our conversation was focussed on the Partnership Canvas, a new tool that Bart developed for designing, negotiating, and adapting partnerships.

Inspired by the Business Model Canvas and driven by the desire to make the process of designing partnerships easier and more tangible, Bart developed the Partnership Canvas.

In case you are not familiar with the Business Model Canvas: it is a strategic management and lean startup template for developing new or documenting existing business models.

Developed by Alexander Osterwalder and documented in his book “Business Model Generation”, this template is an excellent tool to work with teams on business models and to make visible what the challenges and benefits of a business model will be.

Partnership CanvasThe Partnership Canvas serves the same purpose for developing partnership business models. On his website Bart explains:

“The Partnership Canvas was created to demystify the partnership entity by defining its building blocks. The tool can be used to map existing, and design new models for partnerships. The Partnership Canvas helps to break through the boundary of possibilities for innovating with only your own business model.”

You can work the canvas with your own team to map business models. However, a more appealing way to work the canvas is using it to work with your partner on the joint business model. In that case both partners will map their own canvas to explore the missing elements and possible overlaps.

The canvas looks into three aspects of value: the desired value, the value offer and the created value and it maps the transfer activities of a business model in the middle.

The Partnership Canvas is an interesting tool and can be very useful for developing the business model for your upcoming alliance, or even to optimize the business model for your existing alliance.

There is only one way to fully understand what the canvas can do for you: download the canvas and play with it, apply it on a partnership and explore where and how it adds value.

Bart made the canvas available in a Creative Commons license, it is free to download and use, as long as you provide your feedback to the source.

Listen to my conversation with Bart in the Collaborative Business Podcast and hear him explain more about the Partnership Canvas. On this page on Bart’s website you can read more about the canvas and download the canvas in a PDF file.

Have a great week!


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