We seek out the best organizations we can find and fund them to do what they do best. These are our guidelines for annual milestones for our grantees.
We keep reporting requirements to a minimum through the use of concise, well-considered one-year milestones that allow us -- and our portfolio -- to anticipate and evaluate progress. For the most part, these milestones are drawn from information our grantees already have, such as annual operating plans.
We don't want a long list of goals. We want the key 2 or 3 milestones in each of three areas: Delivery, Organizational Capacity, and Impact. Be specific and quantitative, the point is to have an objective and realistic way to evaluate progress. Here are some examples:
1) Delivery: Milestones numerating delivery of activities that are core to your mission, e.g.
2) Organizational Capacity: Milestones that relate to the capacity of your organization to achieve the mission, e.g.
3) Impact: Specific, quantified and verified measures of impact per the organization's mission. If it is too early to anticipate or document impact, then talk about behavior change. If it's too early for that, describe what you intend to accomplish in terms of creating systems to measure impact, e.g.
The articulation of mutually useful milestones is a collaborative process, and we usually go back and forth a couple of times before settling on a set of objective indicators to guide the year ahead. The first step is getting a draft set of milestones on paper. If you want more detailed guidelines you can take a look at this document.