Measurement is such a powerful idea. It is at the heart of science. Numbers are how we test theories, monitor progress and provide feedback. The computer gaming industry certainly understands this. Since the early days of pinball, games have been designed to give constant feedback that is numeric (score), visual (lights) and auditory (bells and whistles).

That’s why dashboards have become so popular. Everyone understands when you’re driving a car that you need to watch a few important indicators: speed, fuel, and temperature. In business, we track key numbers like sales, expenses, or the cost of customer acquisition. For a website, we often track the number of unique visitors on a page or average length of stay on a page.

As we’ve re-branded this year with our new name, logo and tagline, the core value that has surfaced is advocacy. The re-branding coincides with a major legislative effort this year. We’ve dramatically increased our activity and have begun to reach out to membership to engage in the very important work. How shall we measure that engagement? What are the dashboard numbers for advocacy?

  • How many join the alert system?
  • How many respond to a call to action?
Our April Numbers:
  • 267 grassroots advocates
  • 358 emails sent
  • 18 legislators contacted

Are these good numbers? That’s for you to decide. There are 157 grantees in California employing over 20,000 people who serve over one hundred thousand children and their parents. As optimist, I think our numbers should be:

  • 120,000 grassroots advocates
  • 120,000 emails sent
  • 120 legislators contacted

What do you think?

Written by:
Christopher Maricle
Executive Director, Head Start California