In their recent paper, “Wheel Forward or Spiral Downward,” Design Group International’s Mark L. Vincent and Stezala Consulting’s Kim Stezala discuss how measuring results (or success and failure) in an organization is one of the most difficult things to do – and how it drastically affects the results and outcomes we generate and receive.
Nowhere is this more true than in many outreach initiatives developed by local governments, non-profits, churches and faith-based organizations. Often, the organization in question decides to do some sort of outreach – whether just for the common good, or to grow their organization’s reach / membership, or some combination of the two. However, organizations often do these things without a clear sense of what the expected results should be. Or, they expect such results as to make anything that happens in reality a sad shadow of the pictures painted in their minds.
At that point, a great re-measurement begins: usually, it becomes a matter of if whatever happened (or didn’t happen) was acceptable to the group, not a matter of measuring what actually happened. Unclear, vague measurements based on dreams and desires (not really based in experience or understanding) at the outset often then give way to results measured by “if we liked it, or if we are ok with it, or if we are resigned to it,” rather than a matchup of effort to outcome. In many ways, this is a denial of failure. Nevertheless, only when we can declare failure when it happens can we also find true success when it happens.
Read the whitepaper, Wheel Forward or Spiral Downward, by clicking the link below!