Playgrounds and Performance: Results Management at KaBOOM!

Published: 2021-07-08 09:09:57
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KaBOOM! ultimately chose to measure outputs as opposed to social impact: why? Does this align well with mission of the organization? Why or why not?

KaBOOM! opted to measure outputs as opposed to social impact since the approach was deemed to be compatible with the core vision and operating system of the organization, with the focus being on the creation of more playgrounds for the children. According to some board members, there was the need of adopting the performance measurement approach which can measure the companys social impact to the community. This was perceived to be a major strategy especially when it comes to wooing the philanthropic funders (Leonard, Epstein and Winig, 2005). However, the approach of measuring the social impacts was not in line with the companys mission but rather aligned with funders missions.

After rejecting the adoption of the social impact measurement as a way of assessing the companys progress and performance, the board members agreed on the implementation of measuring outputs. Apparently, this strategy was deemed the best since it aligned well with the mission of an organization which involved focusing on the financial and operational metrics of KaBOOM! The vision of KaBOOM! revolves around the creation of adequate playing spaces for the children through the companys direct initiatives or via the Community Partners efforts whose outputs are most measurable (Leonard, Epstein and Winig, 2005). Regardless of applying the output measurement strategy, it was imperative not to overlook the importance of the social impact metrics. This led to the introduction of the social change model which is significant in attesting that creation of more playgrounds is concurrently facilitating the establishment of a safe environment and healthier children.

Provide a critique of the final PMS for KaBOOM! What aspects of the system do you think are effective? What would you change, and why?

The initial list of the metrics to be incorporated in the organizations Performance Management System (PMS) was long. I have to admit that the board members had to make tough decisions before settling on particular measures that were included in the final PMS for KaBOOM! If I was part of the board, I could have also advocated for the elimination of ambiguous and less-relevant measures from the original list before agreeing on the final components to be captured in the PMS.

It was also a brilliant idea for the PMS development team to employ the three-pronged strategy which included Lead, Seed, and Rally. The lead-prong was meant to track the expertise and funders who facilitate the construction of the playgrounds. The seed prong of the KaBOOM! covered the roles and duties of particular community groups. The Rally gave the definition of different parameters utilized in the identification of success or failures of the advocacy programs implemented to attract partners or Playmakers. I think this approach gave the board members the start point and direction required when it comes to developing an effective PMS. According to me, it was an appropriate decision to focus on outputs as opposed to social impact. Apparently, this approach aligned well with the organizations mission. It is apparent that focusing on outputs increased the social change and influence of the KaBOOM! to the community.

However, if I was part of the board members, there are some aspects of PMS that I would change. For instance, I will make a few alterations on the implementation of the dashboard. The dashboard was meant to help the board members and the managers to assess the organizations progress towards its value, productivity, and leverage targets through the comparison of year-to-year and year-to-goal metrics on measures which can include the number of children served or rates of staff retention (Leonard, Epstein and Winig, 2005). Whereas this approach is significant in the retrieval of particular details, some essential features will go unnoticed such as outputs of the current month as compared to the previous month. Instead of using year-to-goal metrics in the dashboard, I will use month-to-month goal metrics. This will be helpful in making monthly comparisons.

Broadly speaking, how can the selection of the metrics impact the culture/social identity of an organization? And specifically for KaBOOM! What changes (if any) might stem from the implementation of this particular performance management framework? Think of this in terms of: culture/identity and actual behaviors/actions that might be taken by the organizations and its employees.

The Performance Management System (PMS) is mainly developed to facilitate monitoring and balancing of the organizational control. This will ultimately ensure that a given organization focus on action plans which can lead it towards the accomplishment of the companys objectives and goals. Consequently, these goals will be a direct manifestation of vision and strategic alignment of an organization (Aguinis, 2013). It follows that the selection of the metrics to be incorporated in the development a particular PMS will have a significant impact on the culture/identity of a particular organization, just like it is the case of the KaBOOM! It is apparent that regardless of the metrics chosen, the groups social identity will remain to be a significant part of the firm.

For example, KaBOOM! chose output measurement as its key metric in the development and implementation of its final PMS. KaBOOM! settled on the output measurement system approach was deemed to be compatible with the core vision and operating system of the organization, with the focus being on the creation of more playgrounds for the children. Apparently, this approach shaped how things are done in the organization thus playing a significant role in defining and developing the identity and culture of an organization. By putting an emphasis on the output, KaBOOM! will focus on creating the culture of accountability and diligence where individuals will be held accountable for the outcome of their performances.

It is imperative for an organization to maintain a popular social image lest its publicity is tainted. If an organizations social identity is damaged, it will fail to achieve its mission. It follows that the institution ought to select appropriate metrics since they determine the successes/failures of an organization. For instance, along with the implementation of the output measurement strategy, KaBOOM! introduced the social change model which was significant in demonstrating that the creation of more playgrounds has facilitated the establishment of a safe environment and healthier children, thus helping in the formation of ideal public opinion.

References

Aguinis, H. (2013). Performance Management . Prentice Hall.

Leonard, H. B., Epstein, M., & Winig, L. (2005). Playgrounds and Performance: Results Management at KaBOOM! (B). President and Fellows of Harvarrd college, 1-8.

Leonard, H. B., Epstein, M., & Winig, L. (2005). Playgrounds and Performances: Results management at KaBOOM! (C). President and Fellows of harvard College, 1-4.

 

 

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