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Mergers and other forms of partnerships are on the minds of seminary leaders these days. Some theological schools are hoping to join forces with a nearby college or university; others are seeking greater collaboration with other theological schools.

Over at the Nonprofit Finance Fund, consultant Tom McLaughlin has been writing about mergers and alliances. Several of his articles are well worth reading. Here's a sample:

  1. "Determine Your Goal Before Seeking Partners for an Alliance." In this short essay, Tom McLaughlin offers a reminder that you be clear on your own goals before you seek a merger partner. If you don't know what you want an alliance to accomplish, you won't know if a potential merger partner is the right fit. Read the essay here.
  2. "Who Are You? Mergers Don't Mean Lost Identity." When considering a merger with another organization, many leaders are worried about "loss of identity." In this article, McLaughlin suggests that there are certain kinds of identity that you don't need to worry about losing, and others that you should be concerned about. Read the article here
  3. "Secret Sauce Of Backroom Collaborations." Many nonprofits are interested in sharing back-office functions with a similar organization, McLaughlin says. But if such partnerships are truly going to save money, three key ingredients are necessary. Read about them here.
  4. "Merger Myths: Six Reasons the Package Really Is on the Truck." The No. 1 myth, according to McLaughlin: Mergers bring significant savings in administrative costs. It's rarely true, he warns. Click here to read more about this myth, plus five more. 

In Trust has been covering this topic in recent issues as well. In the Autumn 2010 issue, you can read a case study about a complicated merger between two small Canadian schools. Read the full article here


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