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Evaluation is about understanding your stakeholders

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Evaluation is about People!

I have just finished a 20 months project on evaluation of training and development porgrammes and I am just about to embark on a new project with a related remit.
The one main element I would like to focus on today is the importance of stakeholder management in developing sound and robust evaluation plans.
Evaluation of training programmes is about people (stakeholders) and perspectives. You need to have a very good understanding of the needs, interests and expectations of all stakheolders involved in or connected to the training programmes you deliver. Stakeholder mapping is a good exercice to gain a wider perspective.
Evaluation purposes and expectations will vary depending on the stakeholder, the training programme and the timing of evaluation.
When designing evaluation strategies and plans we tend to focus on the "what" are we going to evaluate and "how" will we do it. The firrst question should be around "why" do we evaluate and "who" wants to know or could/should be interested?
Food for thoughts.

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