In Step 4, the specific work you've identified begins and the excitement builds!
Implementation requires the team to consider such aspects as available resources, timeline, expected results, anticipated outcomes, target groups and which key partners are needed. Many challenges will often emerge during implementation that will require team members to come together to brainstorm potential solutions—including the possibility of a complete change of plans!
Remember: learning from experience is an essential part of the AHCA and to keep moving forward!
“As project teams move forward with their work, they encounter both unexpected opportunities and challenges. Translating planning into reality needs constant checks and balances.” Harmonization Cancer Prevention Team (2016) pp. 30
As the team’s activities move from a plan into action, it is vital to discuss and update the action plan on a regular basis. Be flexible and recognize that new information makes advancing the activities an ever-changing process.
Some tips to manage the work along the way:
Diagram revised from Harmonization Cancer Prevention Team, (2016).
Evaluation provides an opportunity to learn from experience and to demonstrate the impact of various strategies. Demonstrating impact also shows accountability. By tracking, reflecting on and reporting progress, teams learn whether they are on target to meet their objectives. Regular evaluation identifies activities that are working well, those that are not, and what needs to change. It also reveals improvements that can be made along the way.
Keep track of key elements that show how you are progressing, as you go along. If you notice a successful outcome, remember to back up your results with data. Surveys, interviews, focus groups, conversations, observations, tracking attendance at meetings and events, keeping count of information requests and polling are just some of the ways you can evaluate your initiative.
Determine what you want to know
Be clear on the reasons for conducting an evaluation. Understanding the purpose of your evaluation will guide the rest of the evaluation plan. Once you know what objectives you are striving to complete and the actions you will be taking, sit down with your community team and determine:
- Outcome – focuses on understanding the changes or impacts of your activity
- Process – focuses on how the activities were implemented