Month: April 2006

Author: Patrick Parnaby Selecting a reporting method that will improve the odds for implementation is critical. When developing your evaluation presentation, think about the needs of your stakeholders. Problem You have completed your evaluation and have compiled your results. Now you need to inform your stakeholders of your conclusions while increasing the chances that your

Analyzing data can help you refine your web site to reach your target audience. Web analysis gives you an inside view of the activites of your users. Problem It’s difficult to gauge your site’s effectiveness because you don’t know who is visiting the site or which pages they are visiting. Solution Utilize software to analyze

Author: Patrick Parnaby Bringing in an external evaluator can overcome staff resistance. Is everyone happy as hippos? if so, why resistance to evaluation? Problem There is a consensus among the staff that an evaluation is unnecessary because the program is thought to work just fine. Solution Hire an experienced, external evaluator to help you plan

Author: Patrick Parnaby Avoiding survey pitfalls can help ensure success. Simplifying Surveys Whenever possible, keep your survey simple. Long, complicated surveys often cause participants to give up. If you need more detailed information, consider using two different surveys. One can be a simple overview of the content you need to evaluate and can be widely

Author: Patrick Parnaby A useful evaluation plan incorporates a number of factors. This penguin did a thorough evaluation and concluded that he is short. This was not useful news.  Problem Your evaluation was expensive, but the results are not very useful. Solution Accurately define your stakeholders and their needs, and use that information to develop

Author: Patrick Parnaby Skilled project management can mean the difference between success and failure. Managing your project effectively requires that you see the forest and the trees, and that you look at yourself. Problem You have tight budget constraints, numerous important deadlines, a small staff to accomplish a large task, and you need to keep

Author: Patrick Parnaby Using a variety of evaluation techniques can reveal hidden truths about your program. Evaluation isn’t helpful unless you measure the right things.  Problem You’ve implemented the feedback from your focus groups, but your project is still failing. You are confused because test users say your program is great, but no one is

Author: Patrick Parnaby Developing program objectives begins with knowing your target audience. Focus groups can give you information about the programs and products your audience needs. These penguins didn’t respond well to “101 Ways to Use Palm Fronds,” but were keen on “Iceberg Fishing Techniques.” Problem You want to be sure people are in need

Author: Patrick Parnaby Collecting and analyzing survey data is easier with technological tools. When measuring the effectiveness of a program, surveys have a number of advantages. Problem You want to use surveys to determine if your project is effective in changing attitudes or behaviors, but traditional options for survey data collection are expensive, hard to

Author: Patrick Parnaby Incorporating technological tools into evaluation plans can please funders. Your funders will want you to look at your project from many angles. Providing them with a sound evaluation plan gives funders the assurance they need. Problem Your project wasn’t able to secure funding because your evaluation plan was “weak.” Solution Develop a