3 Keys to Measuring and Then Sharing Your Program’s Progress

My colleague, March Leh, made a great point in his blog published earlier this month: “key audiences care most about progress towards project completion and visionary goals.” I wanted to hone in on a few critical points that form the basis of the most hard-hitting performance measurement for your government program or organization. While it is harder to track and then articulate progress made towards achieving an organization’s mission and vision, it is worth the investment of resources. Performance measurement and then sharing the facts can seem like a daunting task, but I have found success by focusing on the following: Identify what is most important to your most important audience(s): This step is all about narrowing in on the aspects of performance that will show the value of your program or organization. This can be a tremendous opportunity to engage emerging leaders in your organization to take the reins. I have observed that engaging the full team with many diverse perspectives (and ownership roles) is very valuable in moving this chess piece forward. As a team, brainstorm and narrow: What are we currently measuring that shows the value of our organization to this key group(s)? What are we trying to measure that shows our value, but may not be hitting the mark? What important points are not even on our radar that would mean the world if we could track them and articulate them?

Explicitly link everything to the mission and vision: One of the most poignant phrases in the performance measurement world is ‘So what?’ After you have identified or even re-evaluated the essential components of your program or organization to enhance measurement and sharing, make sure the story of why these facts are important in supporting your organization’s progress to meet its mission and vision is crystal clear.

Break it down into simple and visual facts: Once organized around the content, one of the most challenging final stretch considerations is how to share this vital information with the people that matter most. Just last week I transformed a perfectly informative (and boring) word document into a tool that resonated with my core audience. I used an infographic, but there is a world of options. By simply changing the format and presentation of this content using dynamic shapes, color, and images, the information was transformed into a tool that resonated with my intended audience. The message was not just delivered; it was received. And it does not take an artist, just some intentional brainstorming about the key points to convey and how to truly convey them.

And don’t forget to infuse this effort with regular updates! Stale facts mean nothing.

What powerful performance measurement and sharing tips do you find valuable?