Impact: from measurement to leadership (NCVO Annual Conference 2012)


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More presentations from the NCVO Annual conference: will help you innovate in your work.

Richard Piper, Head of Improvement and Innovation, NCVO
Andrew Barnett, Director, Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation

Impact thinking freshens the lifeblood of your organisation. Done well, it runs right through your organisation bringing shifting attitudes and behaviours, creating innovation, inspiration and dynamism. Done badly, it’s just a bunch of half-useful indicators and rather iffy data that clog up your system. If we start with leadership not measurement, we can end up with stronger and more adaptable organisations.

This interactive session will debunk some myths, explain the five elements of impact and help you make a practical start on Impact Leadership.

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  • Sample workshop
  • So: something about our own experience and the lessons. First of all, it’s worth saying that SROI is indeed a nirvana – as the DEMOS report indicated, attributing monetary values to impacts is something that the vast majority of the third sector is a long way from - but it’s still something worth striving for: the ability to compare the likely impact of different philanthropic investments – LIKE FOR LIKE – is surely something we’d all benefit from.We completed our evaluation framework in 2010. It started with our developing our strategy which we began in 2008 (we have one clear mission - to connect and enrich the experiences of individuals, families and communities, with a special interest in supporting those who are most disadvantaged - and four (or five) purposeful aims (covering cultural understanding, fulfilling potential and the environment and three objectives per aim. That sums up the work of the UK Branch. I should also add that, reflecting the fact that we are part of a much larger European Foundation headquartered here, we place a particular emphasis on maximising the beneficial impact of our work through encouraging cross-border exchanges of lessons and experiences.So, why did we bother? What were the drivers? As I said at the beginning, we wanted to maximise our impact. This Was especially important for a strategic investor working with relatively small amounts of money compared to many of our peers and certainly to government and seeking to bring about systemic change, rather than fund service delivery.We wanted to tell a compelling story to partners and collaborators and to the wider sectors in which we work about what we want to achieve and what we are achieving – and to have a simple, immediate way of doing this.We wanted to extract learning from individual investments, thus broadening and increasing impactWe wanted to set an example and to lead: to be at the forefront of thinking and practice.But you should note that all these drivers are internal: nobody outside was asking us to do this. But, because of foundations’ independence, it’s all the more important to challenge ourselves. We need to foster a culture of internal curiosity and challenge because it’s only from within that challenge will come.
  • I mentioned that evaluation is part of the planning toolbox. This is the cycle we now go through for new programmes.
  • Impact: from measurement to leadership (NCVO Annual Conference 2012)

    1. 1. PM5 Impact: from measurement to leadership •Andrew Barnett, Director, Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation (UK) •Richard Piper, Director, Roald Dahl’s Marvellous Children’s Charity (previously Head of Improvement and Innovation, NCVO)
    2. 2. A reflection: George Bernard Shaw The reasonable man adapts himself to the world: the unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore all progress depends on the unreasonable man.
    3. 3. Common Assumptions• leaders are born, not made;• leadership is a rare and uncommon talent;• leaders are necessarily charismatic;• leadership is found only at the top organisations;• leaders are smarter and more creative than the rest of us.
    4. 4. The Paradoxes of Leadership• compassionate yet tough and assertive;• audacious yet humble;• consulting yet and motivating;• visionary yet realistic;• intentional yet authentic;• enthusiastic yet questioning;• uniters and also disrupters;• leaders but followers too.
    5. 5. When it comes toimpact, maximisingand measuring aretwo sides of thesame coin
    6. 6. Our world is changing• Resources are depleted• Need is greater - homelessness up - youth unemployment up - demands of our ageing society greater• Problems are more complex and inter-related
    7. 7. The challenge for our sector• Reconfigure organisational structures• Collaborate• Innovate• Demonstrate what works• Scale and replicate
    8. 8. 1. Diagnosis2. Guiding principles3. Coherent action
    9. 9. Our diagnosis• We have the scope to work across agenda and build unusual coalitions• We are small suggesting a focus on innovation and strategic philanthropy• We are part of something much bigger and international
    10. 10. Guiding PrinciplesTransformation over Transaction, acting:• Innovatively• Internationally• and involvingly.
    11. 11. Coherent action: the lifecycle of a programme • Scoping: research and consultation to identify most effective intervention in response to1 an issue/problem • Objectives and outcomes: developing a plan of activity to maximise beneficial impact2 including determining what success might look like. • Implementation: might include funding pilot projects.3 • Evaluation: assessing impact and discerning learning.4 • Dissemination: targeted communication of the learning to those who can make a difference, can change systems, scale or replicate successful initiatives.5 • Exit: concluding the programme6
    12. 12. The quest to measure value Funders and commissioners have a vital role to play in incentivising good outcomes measurement – funders need to incorporate evaluation data into subsequent rounds of grant giving in order for organisations to see a return for their efforts, and commissioners need to put money aside in contracts specifically for the evaluation of projects. Measuring Social Value Demos 2010
    13. 13. Our experience: drivers and lessons• Need to maximise impact• Need to tell a compelling story to partners and collaborators and to the wider sectors• Need to extract learning from individual activities• Desire to set an example and to lead: to be at the forefront of thinking and practice
    14. 14. A vital planning tool: the delivery cycle
    15. 15. Our emerging ‘theory of change’• Scoping• Coalition building• Persuading• Demonstrating• Learning and improvement
    16. 16. Coalitions co-founded by Gulbenkian
    17. 17. Thank you