There have been many themes emerging throughout the Institute. One of the most popular among newcomers and seasoned investors alike is measurement. How do you measure impact, both social and financial? Must we agree to tradeoffs on mission or money? What standards are there? How can we respond to skeptics within our foundation? And so on.
“People are getting stuck when it comes to measurement…The good news is that slowly but surely, forward-thinking foundations are beginning to report out on their experiences and returns, with help from intermediaries. Their trials are becoming models for others seeking justification for their impact investments, as they build a case for full board support.”
Although measurement may look different depending on any given foundation’s sector, geography or investment asset class, Amy shared some top learnings that can apply across the board:
- Be flexible with measurement targets
- It’s okay to outsource to experienced managers
- A preference for private investments
- Get real with examples
- There’s value in our peer network
“It seems so obvious,” Jane said. “Few impact investments clearly defined the intended impact up front.” As the saying goes: What gets measured gets done.
Learning and benchmarking are key steps towards becoming an impact giver. If you are interested in giving with impact on Philanthropy take a look at these selections from Giving Compass.
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