Demonstrating Value offers simple management solutions that enable you to use information and data more effectively to run your organization, plan for the future and show your value to the community. Demonstrating Value combines business performance monitoring with social impact evaluation in a compact and powerful communication tool.

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When it comes to measuring impact it can be daunting to work out what's tangible and practical to do. You need to be able to think through how your work touches the lives of individuals and the community, and then focus in on measuring what will give you the biggest benefit. This is evidence that would help you fine tune your programs, as well as pieces of information that can support what you communicate.

 

Asking simply 'what you want to know and show' about your impact is a great way to get at what's important. There are also some other simple exercises that can go further to tease out why you matter.  Chose the one(s) that fit for your organization.You can:

 

  •  Brainstorm how you...


Many years ago, I sketched out a visualization of how social and environmental impacts interelate as a living tree.  It helped me think about how diverse impacts can be closely connected, especially in how individual well-being connects with community well-being and the environment.  People I showed it to liked how it made them think about impacts that they wouldn't otherwise associate with their work.  Today I have made that sketch into a more legible drawing using Paint.! Not the most high end graphic design program, I know, but it no longer resides in a folder near my desk.   Each impact area also has many dimensions to explore which are already part of the Impact Mapping Worksheet and are listed below.  

 

How to use the...


Love it or hate it, spreadsheets are the number one data tracking tool in many community-based organizations. Unless you are, or have a spreadsheet geek on staff, most of us mainly learn enough to get by - perhaps a few functions, the basics of doing formulas, possibly graphs.  For most people, entering and tracking data in  spreadsheets is easy, but analyzing can be painful.  Here is my wisdom learned from decades of spreadsheeting to make your spreadsheet going a bit easier.

 

Pretend you're somebody else. The seemingly inconsequential spreadsheet file that you’ve started may end up being a key file that is added on to, and used for years by multiple people, long after you’ve left the organization.   Take the extra five minutes to imagine you are somebody else looking at...


Social change leaders hit the ground running: challenges come up, forks in the road present themselves, and their business models constantly evolve.   Ideally, they have some good data on hand that can help with tough decisions, and that provide insights about social, environmental and financial bottom lines. 

 

Social innovation, by its very definition, involves finding new, and more effective approaches to addressing the complex social and environmental problems of our times.  We need to collectively learn from what is happening so that we can scale these efforts.  Impact measurement is seen as a critical need to developing the sector and building new financial support.  Yet, if nascent impact measurement methods are imposed on organizations pre-maturely, we may actually be limiting growth. 

 

The problem with many impact measurement efforts is that organizations get stuck tracking easy-to-measure indicators that aren’t fundamentally important to the...


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