Back in March we posted a blog entry which stated that the most important factor for successful sponsorship was time. You can review that blog entry via this link:http://mindavation.com/IDBlog/2012/03/time-–-the-most-important-sponsorship-factor/ ?
A number of people have asked if we have hints or tips to help convince sponsors to spend more time working with their project teams. Being mindful that sponsor’s time is limited due to the responsibilities they have, there is a factor which we find gets the attention of sponsors who are “time poor” and struggling to keep all of their responsibilities in order. That factor is the time to budget ratio.
The time to budget ratio is simple and uses a single data point as an example. 30 minutes constitutes 1/80th of a 40-hour work week. Therefore, if the sponsor’s project will take up to 1/80th of their budget, then spending 30 minutes a week on the project is justified and is appropriate. If the project is greater than 1/80th of their budget, then more time may be appropriate. However, if the project takes up less than 1/80th of the sponsor’s overall budget, you may be dealing with a sponsor that is too high up in the organisational hierarchy. In this case, sponsorship responsibilities should probably be delegated to a person whose scope or budget would be more appropriate – that is, at least 1/80th of their budget, therefore being worth more of their attention.
Now, not all sponsors time allocation can be tied to budget; government managers often are not measured or guided by a budgetary factor. In this case, the element of scope can be applied, using the same ratio. If the project affects at least 1/80th of the scope or responsibilities they are expected to manage, then the 30 minutes a week ratio applies. If not, then sponsorship responsibilities should be delegated.
Is your sponsor’s time to budget ratio appropriate? Maybe a discussion or a re-evaluation of who should be your sponsor is in order.
Additional sponsorship management tips are available!
Mindavation is offering a workshop on Successfully Managing Sponsors that discusses working in various sponsorship structures and how to deal with various sponsorship challenges, including the challenge of time. For details, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can learn about all of the Mindavation offerings at www.mindavation.com or www.mindavation.com.au.