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Kylie Hutchinson on the Top 10 Reasons Why I’m Glad I’m an Evaluator

My name is Kylie Hutchinson.  I am an independent evaluation consultant and trainer with Community Solutions Planning & Evaluation.  I frequently teach workshops on evaluation and occasionally facilitate the Canadian Evaluation Society’s Essential Skills Series course.  I am also a regular workshop presenter at AEA conferences and eStudy Webinars.  I also Twitter weekly at @EvaluationMaven.

It’s summer, and hot, and I’m in major procrastination mode.  Today I found myself thinking about all the reasons why I like being an evaluator.  Here’s my top ten list.  Enjoy, and please feel free to add your own!

Lessons Learned: Ten Reasons Why I’m Glad I’m an Evaluator

  1. I get to collect data in the strangest of places like alleyways at midnight, school playgrounds, and drag races.
  2. I sound really smart when I use terms like “contribution analysis” and “triangulation of findings”.
  3. If I’m external, I never get caught up in office politics.
  4. If I’m internal, I still get to go to the office Christmas party.
  5. I can get away with reading only one academic journal.
  6. I get to meet really committed program staff working on the front lines.
  7. I don’t have to work on the front lines.
  8. Not only do I get to manage data, but sometimes other people’s egos as well.
  9. I never have to talk about my work at cocktail parties.
  10. I can go to AEA and CES conferences and realize I’m not weird.

Join Kylie and all of the other non-weird evaluators at the American Evaluation Association’s Annual Conference this November in Anaheim. 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.



  • Penny Black · September 1, 2011 at 10:31 am



  • Paromita De · August 30, 2011 at 8:20 am

    Thank you so much, this is a great list.


  • Dawn Smart · August 29, 2011 at 1:03 pm

    I’d add … The variety of projects means I get to learn something new all the time.


  • Ashley · August 27, 2011 at 10:35 am


    I loved your list! I am a grad student in Secondary Education, and am realizing I love research and evaluation more than than the classroom! How do I get involved in the field so I can do what you do?! Any advice is greatly appreciated 🙂


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