Chapter 15 & 16 Synthesis
Chapter15 & 16 Synthesis
The“Outcome Assessment and Program Evaluation” is the chapterfifteen of the “The Jossey-Bass Handbook of Nonprofit Leadershipand management” book written by John Clayton Thomas. The chapterstarts by introducing the techniques of outcome assessment andprogram evaluation that non-profit organization use. The chapteremphasizes on the useful tools used by executives in outcomeassessment and program evaluation. Clayton discusses the process foroutcome assessment. He argues that for an outcome assessment to havea maximum value, the process must be planned and executed in advance(Renz, 2010). First, the organization leaders need to be committed tothe assessment. Secondly, the assessment should be carried out onprogram-by-program basis. Thirdly, the assessment should consist ofextensive involvement of staff and clients to assist in gatheringinformation. Finally, the process should be linked to the informationtechnology database of the organization (Renz, 2010).
Outcomeassessment process is a goal-based process, hence depends on targetedgoals. There are three types of goals namely outcome goals, activitygoal, bridging goals. United Way of America defines outcome goals aschanges/benefits for an individual or a group of people during andafter participating in a program activity (Rowe & Conway, 2013).In other terms, outcome goals are final intended consequences of aprogram, and people-oriented because their main aim is to helppeople. Rowe et al (2013) argues that activity goals are the internalmechanics of a program, level of activities, and desired outcomeswithin a program. The goal states the actual work, the number ofclients the program intends to serve, and the time staffs spend onthe program. Between the activity goals and outcome goals there existthe bridging goals. As the name suggests, the goals connectactivities to outcomes. Unlike the outcome goals, bridging goalsfocus more on the route to the final consequences rather than theconsequences themselves. Unfortunately, outcome assessment programsface some side effects. In this case, side effects are theconsequences of the program, but unintended consequences. Goal shouldbe designed in way that they can link to the desired outcome.
Claytongoes ahead and discusses the procedure of measuring goals and theconcepts of measurements. Drucker (2012) posits that there are threetypes of measure tools namely program record and statistics, clientquestionnaire surveys, formal testing instruments, trained observerratings, and qualitative measures. After defining measures, thedecision makers should continue with data collection, analysis, andreporting. The final step involves program evaluation whereby theorganizational staff carries out the internal program evaluation andoutside consultants carries out the external program evaluation(Renz, 2010).
Afterreading this chapter, I now understand more on the outcome assessmentand program evaluation. I now understand are the procedures carriedout in outcome assessment ranging from planning the program, definingthe program goals, measuring the goals, data collection, analysis,and reporting, and evaluating the program. Additionally, the examplegives me reality overview of the process.
The“Evaluating The effectiveness of Nonprofit organization” is thesixteen chapter of the “The Jossey-Bass Handbook of NonprofitLeadership and Management” book written by Vic Murray. The chapteraddresses the challenges facing organizational effectivenessevaluation. Additionally, the chapter defines organizationaleffectiveness, organizational effectiveness evaluation, itsimportance, and procedures. Murray urges that the concepts oforganizational effectiveness results from theoretical perspective,and formal organization have to achieve one or more identified goals.The measure of effectiveness seeks to ascertain how organizationsachieve its goals. Evaluation is the process of gathering informationfrom past activities to make decisions (Drucker, 2012). On the otherhand, organizational effectiveness evaluation occurs when anorganization applies evaluation process to access its current state.Unfortunately, an ideal evaluation process faces some problems. Forinstance, technical difficulties may emerge in developing themeasurement instrument, and therefore professions should be welltrained to overcome this problem. Politics is inevitable inevaluation since there is room for subjectivity for difference toarise between the parties (Renz, 2010).
Evaluationprocesses go through four stages, and at each stage there ispossibility of misunderstanding between evaluators, evaluates, andstakeholders. The stages include the design stage, implementationstage, interpretation stage, and application stage (Renz, 2010). Thedesign stage defines the purpose of organizational evaluation, andinvestigates the strengths and weakness of the organization in orderto come up better decisions. The implementation stage involvescollection of statistics, administering questionnaires, conductinginterviews, and creating focus groups. The interpretation stageinvolves interpretation of information gathered. Lastly, theapplication stage involves evaluation and producing reports andstatistics regarding the whole process.
Murraygroups methods for assessing organizational effectiveness into twogroups. First, those that focuses on the end results, outcome-basedperformance assessment. They mainly focus on the final consequencessuch as organizational goals, and on the identification andmeasurement of outcome. The system evaluates results at programlevel, as well as organizational level to provide an effectivereport. Secondly, those that focus on the means of achievingoutcomes, means based performance assessment. This category assumesthat correct means leads to better end/ consequences and the primarygoal of the business is profit maximization. Murray classifiesbenchmarking as the most appropriate tool of evaluation of nonprofitorganization. He defines benchmarking as a system that compare anorganization with other similar organizations but are at a betterposition. The method is only applicable to specifics programs andfunctions of the organization (Renz, 2010).
Afterreading this chapter, I began to understand the process of evaluatingthe effectiveness on the nonprofit organizations. Before reading thischapter, I did not have any idea procedures involved in evaluatingeffectiveness. Likewise, I now understand the nature and dynamics ofassessing nonprofit organizational effectiveness, and how to addressits challenges.
Drucker,P. (2012). Managingthe non-profit organization.Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Renz,D. O. (2010). TheJossey-Bass handbook of nonprofit leadership and management.San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.
Rowe,W.G & Conway, M. (2013). Introductionto Nonprofit Management: Text and Cases.Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE Publications.