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Evaluation of Health Initiatives with Kerry Anne McGeary

This month we had the opportunity to chat with Dr. Kerry Anne McGeary at the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. Kerry Anne is an economist who transitioned from a more traditional academic research role into the role of program officer at the Foundation. She is great to chat with -- she is smart but sensible; she is a skilled and experienced researcher but knows how to get things done in the real world; and she cares about her work and its impact! We pick Kerry Anne's brain about how to measure...


Empathy in Evaluation

This week, Jen and Rebecca chat about the role that empathy can play in program evaluation. This chat was inspired by a workshop the Glass Frog team held internally a few months ago to discuss what empathy is, its importance for our work, and how we can become more empathetic as evaluators, consultants, and colleagues. We enjoyed that workshop and felt like it helped our team talk through some of the ways in which we are not always as empathetic as we could be. Having this conversation...


Evaluating collaboratives with Kyrah Brown and Susan Wolfe

Welcome back! This month we had the pleasure of talking with Kyrah Brown and Susan Wolfe about evaluating community collaboratives. We define what collaboratives are, Susan and Kyrah's approach to evaluating them, and some of the fun and challenging aspects of working with collaboratives. Kyrah and Susan are both trained as community psychologists, so they approach all of their work from that perspective. We learned a lot and we think you will, too, so give it a listen! If you are interested...


Season 2 Trailer!

We are thrilled to be back for our second season of the Glass Frog podcast! If you're new to the podcast, we started it as a way of both connecting with people who were doing interesting work and learning about new topics related to measurement and evaluation. Season 1 was a lot of fun and we're looking forward to doing it all over again in season 2! In the coming weeks, we'll talk about evaluating community collaboratives, health evaluation, the role of empathy in evaluation, and many more...


E7: Survey design with Sheila Robinson

Last month, we talked with Justin Rivers of The Character Connection Initiative and he shared with us a story about a survey his organization undertook in order to measure growth on student outcomes. You can listen to that episode to hear some of the things that went well and not-so-well, but one of our takeaways from that episode is how hard it is to do surveys well! In our work, we're constantly butting up against problems with how to design good questions, how to tailor surveys to the...


E6: Evaluation at a small-scale nonprofit with Justin Rivers

Did you know that almost two-thirds of reporting public charities in the U.S. have an annual budget that is less than $500,000? (We learned that from Social Startup Success.) There are a lot of small organizations out there and it's tough to do evaluation when you're a one or two (wo)man show. In this episode, we chat with Justin Rivers, founder of The Character Connection Initiative (TCCI), a character education program serving the NYC region. Justin is a former middle school teacher and...


E5: Evaluation Failures with Kylie Hutchinson

In this episode, we chat with fellow evaluator Kylie Hutchinson about her new book Evaluation Failures: 22 Tales of Mistakes Made and Lessons Learned, which was released in September. Kylie is the principal consultant and founder of Community Solutions, a planning and evaluation firm in British Columbia. She chats with us about her reasons for writing the book, the importance of learning from our failures, and her own experiences as a professional evaluator. Also, spoiler alert: Kylie...


E4: Wrapping up the series on building an outcomes-focused culture

It's your lucky day! We're providing this bonus episode to summarize some of the key takeaways from the outcomes-focused culture series. In this episode, Jen and Rebecca break down the 10 biggest themes from the three-part series and use them to offer a few recommendations for how nonprofits can become more outcomes-driven. Thanks again to our wise and thoughtful guests: Scott Thomas and Sammy Politziner of Arbor Brothers, Kathleen Kelly Janus, and Nikki Thompson from OneGoal - New York.


E3: Nikki Thompson – Building an outcomes-focused culture (Part 3 of 3)

In this final episode of our three-part series, we talk with Nikki Thompson, the Executive Director of OneGoal-New York. OneGoal is dedicated to helping low-income students successfully manage the transition to college. It is a national organization with regional sites across the U.S., and Nikki manages the New York region. We talk with Nikki about OneGoal and the activities they've undertaken (and continue to undertake) in the name of becoming outcomes-driven. Nikki emphasizes the...


E2: Kathleen Kelly Janus – Building an outcomes-focused culture (Part 2 of 3)

This month, we talk with author, teacher, lawyer, and nonprofit-founder Kathleen Kelly Janus about her new book, Social Startup Success: How the Best Nonprofits Launch, Scale Up and Make a Difference. Kathleen is a lawyer by training, but is a social entrepreneur herself and now lectures on social entrepreneurship at Stanford. As part of our series on building an outcomes-focused culture, we wanted to talk with Kathleen about some of the challenges and best practices she observed while doing...


Bonus: Arbor Brothers – Building an outcomes-focused culture

Our conversation with Scott Thomas and Sammy Politziner of the Arbor Brothers was so great that we couldn't contain all of their wisdom in one episode. In this bonus episode, we talk with Scott and Sammy about some of the developments they've seen across the sector with respect to outcomes orientation and where they see areas for continued improvement. We discuss the transition from counting outputs to counting outcomes, the concept of cost per outcome, and Scott and Sammy's suggestion for...


E1: Arbor Brothers – Building an outcomes-focused culture (Part 1 of 3)

Scott Thomas and Sammy Politziner of the Arbor Brothers join us for the inaugural episode of the Glass Frog Podcast. We are kicking off the podcast with a three-part series on building an outcomes-focused culture, and our first episode considers the issue from the funder's perspective. The Arbor Brothers team works with what they call "second stage" organizations, rolling up their sleeves to help their grantees build their capacity to drive toward outcomes. We talk to Scott and Sammy about...


Introducing the Glass Frog Podcast

We’re so excited to announce that Glass Frog is starting a podcast! The podcast, which we’ve brilliantly titled the Glass Frog Podcast, will bring together experts and practitioners to explore the many issues that nonprofit organizations face as they seek to do program evaluation. We’ll talk with funders, other consultants, and practitioners across the sector to dig into questions around measurement, culture building, research methodology, evaluation capacity building, and more. We’ll be...