AEA365 | A Tip-a-Day by and for Evaluators

Feb/10

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Belle Brett on Selecting and Working with Evaluators

My name is Belle Brett and I founded my own consulting firm in 1999, Brett Consulting Group. As evaluators, we sometimes find ourselves in the position of advising clients or other business associates about choosing another evaluator (because of the nature of the project, budgets, timeframes, conflict of interest, etc.), my tip for today helps with that process.

Hot Tip: The tipsheet “Selecting and Working with Evaluators” is a four page reference for organizations that includes tips for selecting an evaluator (e.g. “Note listening and inquiry skills,” “Seek someone with a thorough grounding in evaluation theory and practice as well as social science research skills,” ways practitioners can support the work of evaluators (e.g. “Be realistic about evaluation’s goals,” “Be open-minded”), qualities and practices that help when working with evaluators (e.g., “having organized and complete records of the work you do,” “taking an interest in using results”), reasonable expectations of an evaluator (e.g., the evaluator will “actively seek your input at different stages,” “meet deadlines”), and things that evaluators do in addition to collecting data (e.g. “help you articulate your program’s goals and assumptions,” “help create systems and instruments for you to use yourself.” The tipsheet was originally developed by Belle Brett, Ed.D. (Brett Consulting Group) and recently adapted by Melanie Hwalek (Spec Associates). It may be downloaded from the AEA eLibrary at: http://bit.ly/selectingevaluators

This contribution is from the aea365 Daily Tips blog, by and for evaluators, from the American Evaluation Association. Please consider contributing – send a note of interest to aea365@eval.org.

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