By Hannah Staton, PR and Social Media Associate
Here at Achieve we like to use a variety of templates and visuals that help track progress and keep us going in the right direction. One of our favorite tools is the logic model, and they can be particularly useful in nonprofits.
A nonprofit logic model can really help bring those underlying thoughts to the surface, making what is obvious to you clear to others. Logic models can build understanding and consensus by bringing details to broad goals and identifying gaps in thinking. A good logic model will summarize complex programs to communicate with stakeholders, funders, and other audiences.
Sounds pretty good, huh? Here’s how to make a logic model of your own.
- Start with the “Inputs.” Inputs are the resources you’re going to contribute to the project. This can include time, volunteers, staff, facilities, funding, supplies, partners, and even personal networks. Think of these things as your ingredients.
- Add your “Activities.” Activities are the processes or actions of the program. They can be services, like classes, events, and training, or they can be material development actions, such as promotional kits or educational curricula.
- Decide the “Outputs.” Outputs are the direct results of your inputs and activities. It’s best if these contain a specific number, like “number of classes taught” or “amount of brochures distributed.”
- Come up with the “Outcomes.” Outcomes are the big picture benefits. How did your inputs, activities, and outputs benefit your audiences and your community? What kind of changes were there in skills, knowledge, behavior, or motivation? There should be both short-term and long-term outcomes. Outcomes should be SMART: Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Results-Oriented, and Timed.