Do you qualify for program evaluation?
Many nonprofit leaders would say they don’t. Why? Because they think that in order to conduct a “good” evaluation, they need to have an advanced statistical background or some type of scientific experiment. Forti (2012) writes, “ Some nonprofit leaders equate impact evaluations with randomized control trials and assume that if a comparison group doesn’t naturally exist for their work, then impact evaluation is not for them.”
While rigorous studies have their place, your organization might benefit from less-formal evaluation. Indeed, a small-scale evaluation project is better than no evaluation at all!
Tips for Developing an Evaluation Strategy That is Feasible for Your Organization
- Be realistic about what you are feasibly able to measure. If you aren’t sure, connect with someone skilled in evaluation methodology for advice.
- As stated earlier, view evaluation as a learning process, not a one-time “pass or fail” activity.
- Think through what type of evaluation is best for your organization. Are you ready for an experimental study? Or perhaps you are just getting started and are ready for what’s called a “formative” evaluation project.
For more insights, check out the source listed below. Also, if you need customized coaching in nonprofit impact measurement, contact me today for a free 30-minute coaching session!
Forti, M. (2012). Seven deadly sins of impact evaluation. Stanford Social Innovation Review.
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