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The Ten Elements:  
     
  1. Your motivation  
  2. Your vision  
  3. Stakeholders  
  4. Impact Map  
  5. Your indicators  
  6. Make a plan  
  7. Collect data  
  8. Analyse information  
  9. Share information  
  10. Learning & Action  
     
Case study: The Surf Centre  
Some questions that can arise
The building blocks of the Impact Map

4. Impact Map

Mapping it out

This step helps to link your mission, your objectives, and your activities with their results, by thinking through the ‘model’ for how and why you make things happen. This can be called either developing a ‘theory of change’ 1 or creating a ‘logic model’ 2. nef calls this ‘Impact Mapping’.

You can use the Impact Map or another tool to help you to think through how you create social, environmental, or economic change; how you reach your business goals; and how you act according to your values. This process can be simple, using a piece of plain paper, or can be very complex, involving a full strategy map for a large and complicated organisation. This can be the basis for useful conversations both internally and with different people who matter to the organisation.

Here are some questions that can arise when an organisation asks how it creates change:

Do our activities really lead to the most important outcomes to reach the mission – are the activities necessary?
Are they strategically important for the social side, the enterprise side, or both?
Can our activities be changed to create more positive benefit, better outcomes or further progress toward our mission?
Do our activities lead to any negative outcomes for anyone? Could a change to the activity or undertaking a different activity with the same objectives and outcomes minimise these negative effects?
It’s easy to lay out your theory about how you are going to change things in the world; how you are going to achieve your business goals; or how you are acting in accord with your values. The table below gives you the skeleton:

The Building blocks of the Impact Map

Inputs

Activities

Outputs

Outcomes

Expected Impact

Resources of all kinds

What the organisation does

The direct result of an activity

The longer term change is wants to see in people, communities, or areas if affects

Fulfiling: Its mission

Its business strategy

The values it holds


This chart can help you think how your activities lead to change if you ask these questions after each column:

Why is that important – how does that lead to the change we want to see?
How do we know?

Case Study - The Surf Centre’s Impact Map
You may find the Sample Indicator Bank useful.
To construct your own impact map go to My Impact Map

1 Aspen Institutewww.theoryofchange.org
2 www.managementhelp.org/nep_progs/np_mod/org_frm.htm