Measurement and Evaluation: Accountability
Measurement and evaluation of campaigns are important for enabling accountability. In business, accountability and responsibility are joined at the hip, ethically and economically. Vincent E. Barry, business historian, defines responsibility in the business environment as a scope of obligations assigned to someone on the basis of the nature of that person’s position, functions or line of work (Barry, 1979) which assumes a multifaceted role in relation to processes as well as the intermediate and final outcomes.
Further, given the consequential nature of corporate environment, responsibility tends to be commensurate with positions, in other words - the buck must stop with someone. This is true for several reasons, all of which are arguably related to the fact that millions, sometimes billions, are at stake.
Economically speaking, a track record of accountability encourages trust in one’s ability to deliver desired outcomes, which stimulates investment of confidence and capital. Furthermore, accountability denotes a level of willingness to provide rationalisation or defence for judgements, acts, omissions and/or errors when called upon to do so. This speaks to the ethical component, as not only should the head of communication campaign inspire confidence in his or her ability to add economic value, but show soundness and honesty in judgement regarding decisions about what is achievable and what is not. This is directly related to a communication expert’s role in counselling clients.
Ideally, accountability and responsibility, in communication campaigns or routine internal communication, go hand-in-hand, the problem arises when scale is involved as large organisations create situations ripe for decentralisation of autonomy which lends itself to ‘buck-passing.’
In the end, measurement and evaluation just makes sense and proves value as I said in the previous blog.
Photo credit: LinkedIn Article.