“I want to be able to demonstrate my results because I think we’re doing great things, but…what if the news is bad?”
Let’s imagine, for instance, that children in elementary school don’t receive grades for reading. When your daughter, who is a bright, generous, fun-loving child, begins her first day of middle school, you receive a phone call from the principal’s office. “Mrs. Smith, we’ve discovered that your child is unable to read.”
Let’s analyze that scenario for the moment with a few questions:
I don’t plan to use this blog as a political forum, so fear not – this post has nothing to do with my personal opinions on the missions of the Susan G. Komen Foundation and Planned Parenthood organizations. In addition, I admittedly haven’t read every word written on this subject so I’m speaking a bit off the cuff.
Having said that, as a professional evaluator, I did have a fairly immediate reaction to recent news reports of the Komen Foundation’s decision (and subsequent about-face) to cut funding to Planned Parenthood.
As I watched article after article pop up in the… Learn more
In recent years, nonprofit organizations have been encouraged to embrace a new mindset. This groundswell of change invokes terms such as “performance outcomes” and “results measurement,” but focuses on one primary concept: accountability. As funding becomes increasingly competitive, the demands of foundations, government agencies, and benefactors have shifted accordingly. Specifically, the bar is being raised in the service sector, following trends in the corporate environment, for organizations to demonstrate their impacts in clear and meaningful ways.
We know that impact can take many forms: helping others create financial wealth, providing healthy meals that give the gift of better health,… Learn more
Someone remarked to me the other day, “Oh, I think measurement is great; it helps a lot of companies figure out what they are doing well and not so well and helps them plan, but I’m not sure I understand how it can help us.” I thought about that comment and realized that people in many organizations probably feel the same way. They’ve heard of other organizations’ success with measurement initiatives, but they just aren’t sure how it can help them be successful, too. From my experience, measurement and evaluation can help every type of organization. Consider the following examples:… Learn more
Eval Central is the place “Where Evaluation Blogs Intersect”, including great contributors such as the American Evaluation Association, EvalThoughts, and Evaluation Unsanctioned, as well as feeds from foundations and agencies around the globe. I’m officially hooked and hope we will be adding our own For Good Measure blog to the site soon.
Don’t miss this resource for all things evaluation!