Passion4Social and Catalyst teams on a zoom call

This article describes the partnership between Catalyst and Passion4Social. It is not a typical client-partner relationship. It goes far beyond that!

Intertwined with similar values and ethos, the people involved in the partnership have been positively impacted in different ways. But the outcome illuminates the power of working in a values-led way. Here we outline the impact on each partner, in their own words. 

Passion4Social’s perspective 

By Thiago Carmo, Passion4Social’s Managing Director

Passion4Social's journey with Catalyst began in September 2022, marked by the unique experience of participating in a paid agency pitch; an unprecedented opportunity, even for a seasoned marketing professional with over 20 years of expertise. Recognising Catalyst's commitment to values like equity, love, collectivism, reciprocity, and curiosity; the partnership unfolded as a transformative force.

The rarity of being paid for a pitch removed significant barriers, especially for a non-white immigrant in the UK, demonstrating that equity can create accessible opportunities. As a small social enterprise, balancing paid and non-paid commitments, Passion4Social appreciated this luxury of paid time to thoroughly prepare for the pitch, advocating for this practice as a valuable approach for others.

The diverse panel at the pitch, inclusive of non-white representation, boosted confidence and aligned with Passion4Social's advocacy for diversity and inclusion. Successfully securing the role as communication partners, they realised that diversity indeed begets diversity.

Passion4Social's ongoing journey with Catalyst showcased living through the organisation's values. Collectivism thrived as stakeholders actively engaged in day-to-day operations, fostering ideas and solutions for societal betterment. The pursuit of curiosity opened avenues for diversity, particularly benefiting a team of 70% disabled professionals.

Rooted in love for the mission, Passion4Social found inspiration in Catalyst's producers, experiencing weekly highlights in their interactions. Reciprocity became a guiding principle, evident in Passion4Social's commitment to exceeding expectations and going the extra mile. Despite inevitable mistakes during a challenging internal period for Passion4Social, Catalyst's producers responded with compassion, recognising the human aspect and providing the time needed to address internal struggles and regain performance. 

I'm immensely grateful for the opportunity to be part of this journey, especially as we have felt heard, understood and trusted.

We're thrilled to contribute to the larger mission and to cement a partnership built on shared values and transformative collaboration.

Catalyst’s perspective 

By Jo Morfee, Catalyst’s Producer

I ‘inherited’ the relationship with Thiago and the Passion4Social team in early 2023. The team was still in the forming stages, so we needed to establish and solidify ways of working together, share understanding and rituals. 

From the beginning it was clear that Thiago and I shared a passion for working in a values-led way, and that we had some shared reality - for example as a past Co-Founder of a small CIC, I understood the challenges of running a small business with a big vision. We connected over a shared love of music, travel and our passion for DEI, and this became a good foundation for the partnership - it’s true that the best working relationships are often friendships too.

We hit the storming stage quickly, as Passion4Social encountered difficulties with their team's capacity while fulfilling additional work commitments during a demanding period. However, despite their efforts to meet delivery agreements, internal team struggles led to shortcomings in certain tasks. Rather than insisting that the work programme be delivered to the quality we wanted, I encouraged Thiago to take the time needed to deal with the internal challenges he and the team were facing. 

We understand that Passion4Social’s mission is to employ disabled people, which can mean that there are trade-offs sometimes, to enable the full participation of all team members. I trusted Thiago to let me know what was needed and let go of the need to be in the more traditional ‘client’ role - for example demanding progress, or asking for more / better. This gave Thiago and the team the freedom and autonomy needed to resolve the situation and it built a lot more trust between us. It strengthened our relationship and moved us through the storming phase. 

Of course, there were impacts on our team. We needed to pick up some of the content quality checks during that time, and this was time-consuming for us. But we understood that in a true partnership, and for it to be reciprocal, there needs to be an understanding that the roles can evolve and change, that sometimes one partner needs support from the other, and that it’s not always the ‘client’ who has the right to be supported, it can also be equally required from the ‘client’. In this way, we were really putting our values of love, equity and collectivism into action.

Conclusion: One Outcome!

Jo and Thiago met to hold an annual review of the partnership in October 2023, and each brought key examples of how their shared values have been lived. 

It moved Jo deeply to hear the impacts of how Catalyst’s behaviours, and their relationship with each other, have made such a big difference - to both teams. 

So far, it’s possibly the best example of living Catalyst’s values through partnership, which Jo is incredibly proud of. 

Long may it continue! 

Intertwined with similar values and ethos, the people involved in the partnership have been positively impacted in different ways. But the outcome illuminates the power of working in a values-led way. Here we outline the impact on each partner, in their own words. 

Passion4Social’s perspective 

By Thiago Carmo, Passion4Social’s Managing Director

Passion4Social's journey with Catalyst began in September 2022, marked by the unique experience of participating in a paid agency pitch; an unprecedented opportunity, even for a seasoned marketing professional with over 20 years of expertise. Recognising Catalyst's commitment to values like equity, love, collectivism, reciprocity, and curiosity; the partnership unfolded as a transformative force.

The rarity of being paid for a pitch removed significant barriers, especially for a non-white immigrant in the UK, demonstrating that equity can create accessible opportunities. As a small social enterprise, balancing paid and non-paid commitments, Passion4Social appreciated this luxury of paid time to thoroughly prepare for the pitch, advocating for this practice as a valuable approach for others.

The diverse panel at the pitch, inclusive of non-white representation, boosted confidence and aligned with Passion4Social's advocacy for diversity and inclusion. Successfully securing the role as communication partners, they realised that diversity indeed begets diversity.

Passion4Social's ongoing journey with Catalyst showcased living through the organisation's values. Collectivism thrived as stakeholders actively engaged in day-to-day operations, fostering ideas and solutions for societal betterment. The pursuit of curiosity opened avenues for diversity, particularly benefiting a team of 70% disabled professionals.

Rooted in love for the mission, Passion4Social found inspiration in Catalyst's producers, experiencing weekly highlights in their interactions. Reciprocity became a guiding principle, evident in Passion4Social's commitment to exceeding expectations and going the extra mile. Despite inevitable mistakes during a challenging internal period for Passion4Social, Catalyst's producers responded with compassion, recognising the human aspect and providing the time needed to address internal struggles and regain performance. 

I'm immensely grateful for the opportunity to be part of this journey, especially as we have felt heard, understood and trusted.

We're thrilled to contribute to the larger mission and to cement a partnership built on shared values and transformative collaboration.

Catalyst’s perspective 

By Jo Morfee, Catalyst’s Producer

I ‘inherited’ the relationship with Thiago and the Passion4Social team in early 2023. The team was still in the forming stages, so we needed to establish and solidify ways of working together, share understanding and rituals. 

From the beginning it was clear that Thiago and I shared a passion for working in a values-led way, and that we had some shared reality - for example as a past Co-Founder of a small CIC, I understood the challenges of running a small business with a big vision. We connected over a shared love of music, travel and our passion for DEI, and this became a good foundation for the partnership - it’s true that the best working relationships are often friendships too.

We hit the storming stage quickly, as Passion4Social encountered difficulties with their team's capacity while fulfilling additional work commitments during a demanding period. However, despite their efforts to meet delivery agreements, internal team struggles led to shortcomings in certain tasks. Rather than insisting that the work programme be delivered to the quality we wanted, I encouraged Thiago to take the time needed to deal with the internal challenges he and the team were facing. 

We understand that Passion4Social’s mission is to employ disabled people, which can mean that there are trade-offs sometimes, to enable the full participation of all team members. I trusted Thiago to let me know what was needed and let go of the need to be in the more traditional ‘client’ role - for example demanding progress, or asking for more / better. This gave Thiago and the team the freedom and autonomy needed to resolve the situation and it built a lot more trust between us. It strengthened our relationship and moved us through the storming phase. 

Of course, there were impacts on our team. We needed to pick up some of the content quality checks during that time, and this was time-consuming for us. But we understood that in a true partnership, and for it to be reciprocal, there needs to be an understanding that the roles can evolve and change, that sometimes one partner needs support from the other, and that it’s not always the ‘client’ who has the right to be supported, it can also be equally required from the ‘client’. In this way, we were really putting our values of love, equity and collectivism into action.

Conclusion: One Outcome!

Jo and Thiago met to hold an annual review of the partnership in October 2023, and each brought key examples of how their shared values have been lived. 

It moved Jo deeply to hear the impacts of how Catalyst’s behaviours, and their relationship with each other, have made such a big difference - to both teams. 

So far, it’s possibly the best example of living Catalyst’s values through partnership, which Jo is incredibly proud of. 

Long may it continue! 

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