6 questions for non-assessment assessment

March 3, 2016       The NonProfit Times      

Sometimes not telling people exactly what they are doing until they are well into it can be a successful way of doing things. That’s the approach taken by David Grant at a session on assessment at the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation leadership series.

In his book “The Social Profit Handbook” Grant offers the three preliminary questions and three follow-up questions he asked of attendees, not telling them that they were working on organizational assessment. The questions are:

* Given your organization, with its particular mission, what would success look like in the next three to five years? Use metrics of they are helpful but feel free to use description.

* Whatever you just wrote, can you be more specific?

* If you haven’t already done so, would you give an example of what you’ve just written about?

* Whatever success looked like in that last set of questions, now describe what it would look like at an even higher level. Put another way, what would success really look like in the next three to five years?

* Whatever you just wrote, can you be more specific?

* If you don’t have an example to help others understand what you mean by success at this level, would you make one up?