I recently ran a workshop for Local Government Information Unit on how we know that what is being commissioned is actually making a difference for individuals and communities. I made the point that all too often outputs (what organisations did) are reported on rather than the difference it makes, both in the long and short-term for communities and the individuals that live there.
I looked at ways of listening, recording and presenting information and talked about the need to change the way we think about the people who need help and support. A key message was that if we spend so little on prevention, then we must make it count. In order to do this we need a much more sophisticated measurement system . One that takes into account the complexities of multiple problems and chaotic lives while at the same time is simple to use.
The danger of measuring organisations rather than individuals is that the people most in need get the least support and the inequalities divide widens. It takes an open mind, time to think and a willingness to challenge – failing to do this will leave the most vulnerable in society behind.
We had lots of interesting discussions and here are the slides: Please feel free to share, discuss, comment or get in touch.