Frequently Asked Questions about the GlobalGiving Learning Dashboard

Where can I find my Learning Dashboard?

Each organization has its own Learning Dashboard. If you are an official project leader for GlobalGiving, click on “Learning Dashboard” on the main page of the Project Entry system.

Does this focus on learning and effectiveness represent a change in mission for GlobalGiving?

No. Our mission has always been centered on the belief that the single most adaptable, agile force for global change is a local/grassroots organization. We have developed a platform to provide financial resources to those organizations, and now we are merely building upon that platform to provide an equally important resource: learning tools.  

What kind of learning tools will you provide?

At the moment, we already have a system in place called Partner Rewards to assist our partners in improving the quality of their work, and for getting recognition (and more visibility) as a reward for that improvement. However up until now, that has centered on rewarding  our partners’ effectiveness in raising money and communicating with donors, not in becoming more effective in achieving their mission. We’re in the process of evolving that system so that it better maps with the Listen, Act, Learn and Repeat model of lean startups and then we’ll work directly with our partners to define exactly what sorts of measures we want to establish for each category. For example, in the area of “listening” (see Listening Model) we can use our platform to provide partners with direct feedback from their community about the impact of specific initiatives they’ve undertaken (or we can reward them for efforts to gather community feedback outside of our platform), we can establish a way for them to share best practices with other organizations around the world, and, finally, we can expose them to some of the most innovative thinking in the nonprofit sector and help them put that thinking to the test.

How will you roll this out?

We’re rolling this out collaboratively in a multi-stage process that looks surprisingly like the the “Listen, Act, Learn. Repeat. model.” We have already been listening to what our partners are most hungry for, so we are going to begin by acting:

1. We’re demonstrating the “Listen, Act, Learn. Repeat.” model in action —We’re introducing what startup companies call a “minimum viable product” by simply restructuring our existing process-improvement and reward system so that it better map itself toward the Listen, Act, Learn, Repeat model. This Beta-tool (version 0.1) will obviously provide only a small fraction of the learning tools we will ultimately need to provide, as the majority of of it will center on fundraising performance, but we believe it is important to begin now, so that we can prove the concept and hone it with partner feedback.

2a. Gather feedback from partners on the kinds of learning tools they are most hungry for— We’ll continue to conduct webinars, online forums and specific person-to-person interviews to gather feedback from you about just what kinds of measures, incentives and promotions you most need to adapt to and live by this model.

2b. Seek the wisdom of best-of-class peers in the sharing of best practices and the implementation of progressive theories— As we are getting feedback from our partners, we will also solicit feedback from our peers and colleagues on the best ways to implement online sharing of best practices, and how to aggregate well-vetted content that proposes leading-edge theories on the best way to achieve a lasting impact.

3. Revise our learning tools artner Rewards incentive system to better reflect what we have learned —Once we have collected enough feedback to create a 1.0 version of our Learning Dashboard, we will make appropriate modifications to the existing tool set so that it reflects what we have learned. Then, we’ll incorporate some of the key metrics from the Learning Dashboard into the Partner Rewards structure to ensure that the organizations who best demonstrate their own performance improvement will be the ones who garner higher visibility on the website. This will be our first step towards directing more of the funds in the marketplace to the higher-performing organizations; those organizations performing better than they were before because they’ve Listened, Acted, Learned, and Repeated.

4. Rollout version 1.0, go back to step 1 —Using precisely the same methodology, we will continue to roll out consecutive versions of the learning tools. We don’t expect this process to ever end. Instead we will offer increasingly better versions driven by real feedback to assure we are providing the best tools for the most adaptive and agile organizations to live up to their potential.

Ok, so I have ideas about how you can improve the dashboard and framework.

Great. Please share! Email your feedback to projecthelp@globalgiving.org.

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