5 Tip for Maximizing Impact
How do you know if you are making an impact when you are doing good?
Impact can mean so many things. According to The UN "impact" implies changes in people’s lives. Such changes are positive or negative and can be intended or unintended.
Whether you are a community leader, nonprofit pro, or corporate organization, if you want to make a positive, intentional change for the better within your community, use these five tips to maximize and multiply your impact.
Plan for Impact
In order to make a positive change, you need to first clearly define the challenge you face and what the result will look like. So many times our conversations about community challenges center around actions rather than results. This leads us to considering the means before the ends.
When you plan for impact you start at the end by envisioning the positive result you wish to see. For example, if you want to rescue animals, you might envision healthy animals being placed in a loving forever home.
Once you can see this result, ask yourself - What it would take to succeed?
Know What Difference You Want to Make
Your impact is one piece of a big puzzle. Other people and organizations in the community will also contribute to improving conditions. Look at your resources and expertise. Identify what difference your specific contribution will make. In our animal rescue example, if you are a veterinarian you might provide health services to animals.
Once you know the role that you will play, you can better connect with others who compliment your impact. You can also narrow your focus and resources
Get Clear on What to Measure
Now that you can envision the result you want and know what role you will play, what changes as a result of your actions? You wouldn't be giving back if it didn't change someone's life. How do you know that change occurs?
Identifying what demonstrates the changes you aim to make, helps you get clear on what measures your difference. Once you know what is important to measure, you can incorporate these metrics into your impact strategy.
What else tells your story?
It's not all about numbers. Metrics show your impact in a measurable way and help you set goals to scale that impact, but they don't tell the full story. What else tells the story of the difference you make? Photos, videos, statements/quotes, etc. How you've made people feel can't be measured by the numbers.
Consider how you will capture the power of the difference you want to make.
Don’t just collect information. Use it!
Use the information you collect - metrics, testimonies, and all - to demonstrate and multiply your impact where it matters most.
Share your impact with stakeholders who already invest in your cause through monetary and in-kind contributions. Show them what you have collectively accomplished.
Evaluate your impact with your staff and use it to guide decision-making. Identify areas for improvement. Set new goals. Make changes to create more effective service.
Promote your impact with others through data-driven storytelling that creates a compelling message that engages others who might join your cause.
Ask yourself - how well did we tackle the challenge we set out to address? And identify where you can build more momentum.
Curio412 is an impact management consultancy that helps nonprofits and businesses align organizational objectives with philanthropic goals so that you can improve your bottom line, build relationships, and scale meaningful impact.