Hello, I’m Glenn O’Neil, founder of Owl RE, evaluation consultancy and co-author of the Intelligent Measurement blog.
Rad Resource – Intelligent Measurement: The blog focuses on issues and trends in evaluation, with a particular focus on communications, training, development and events. On average I blog about one time a week and have done so since 2006. Our blog now has on average some 10,000 readers per month.
Hot Tips – favorite posts: Here are four posts that I’d recommend on my blog:
- 20 November 2007 – Likert scale & surveys – best practices: This post is my most popular of all time – generating a record 181 comments! People just love to chat about the Likert scale it seems…
- 11 January 2012 – A pragmatic guide to monitoring and evaluating research communications using digital tools: A recent post – I was commenting on a post made on another blog (On Think Tanks) which led to a contact from the author, an invitation to be a guest blogger and several re-tweets – ah, the rewards of blogging…
- 21 March 2011: Conference evaluation – at a glance: This blog posts highlights a Slideshare presentation of a workshop I co-presented – I list it here as the workshop organisers found me through my blog and it led to several fruitful collaborations.
- 21 June 2011: The communication evaluation challenges for 2020?: Readers seem to love lists – the best / worst five of this or that…sometimes I will create a list or refer to one created by someone else – but perhaps it’s getting overdone now…
Lessons Learned – why I blog:
I started blogging five years ago to position myself as a specialist in a particular area – evaluation of communication programmes and projects. Has it worked? I would say a resounding “yes”. I didn’t expect potential clients to find me through my blog – but I know of several that did so. At times I have thought, like most bloggers, “is anyone out there?” But then I’ll meet someone, like I did recently at a conference who said my blog was “inspirational” (a bit too much I think..). Funny enough, my blog also serves as a sort of personal online archive – where are those excellent guidelines I recall seeing on XYZ? I go to my blog, surely I posted them there!
- Blog regularly – set yourself a goal – like I do – e.g. once a week;
- Should your posts be long thoughtful pieces or more short pieces referring to online resources? I think a mix of both if you can;
- Set yourself a topic area in which you will blog – set out the parameters in your mind at least – then you will have a more “niche” position
- You should have a clear reason why you are blogging – Don’t blog for the sake of blogging; it’s not everyone’s “cup of tea”.
This winter, we’re running a series highlighting evaluators who blog. Do you have questions, concerns, kudos, or content to extend this aea365 contribution? Please add them in the comments section for this post on the aea365 webpage so that we may enrich our community of practice. Would you like to submit an aea365 Tip? Please send a note of interest to firstname.lastname@example.org. aea365 is sponsored by the American Evaluation Association and provides a Tip-a-Day by and for evaluators.