Dataviz

Findings Cookies

Findings Cookies

If food can get people to meetings, maybe it can get people interested in evaluation findings, too. Introducing, the Findings Cookie.

20131120-113325.jpg

The recipe is pretty straightforward, though you’ll want to adjust the number of servings for your audience. I messed up a lot on the first several, so best to give yourself advance time to prototype your cookie before you have to serve it to a stakeholder. For instance, my oven only needed 4 minutes, not the recommended 5-6.

I inserted folded statements of findings from the evaluation, rather than fortunes. Each cookie held a different statement so that the audience was encouraged to open (and eat) them all.

20131120-113315.jpg

We go to the effort of some trial and error and burnt sugar because the novelty of the situation will draw out enthusiasm and elicit discussion among those evaluation stakeholders seated around the table (when their mouths aren’t full of cookie).

Though be careful of how you frame this. When I ran my idea past a friend, he said, “Most evaluations are so poorly designed and executed anyway that people might as well use a fortune cookie to determine findings.” Uh, not really what you want to project when you bring a plate of cookies into the room, right? So lead with the message that: These are not fortune cookies. Inside, you will not find your fortune, plucked randomly from a basket at a factory. These are Findings Cookies. You’ll crack one open to discover something we learned about your program performance. (You could probably make them Recommendations Cookies, too!)
20131120-113334.jpg

Notice how much room I have on those tiny little strips of paper? Not much, yo! You’ll have to work to encapsulate your findings into something that can fit in about 1.5″. Need some help? Check out the webinar I gave this summer on Message and try the 6-word presentation story activity I suggest there. The bottom line is that each finding should be tweet-able.

Bon appetit!

4 thoughts on “Findings Cookies
  1. Mark Parman says:

    What a great idea. I’m now thinking that there is a way to use this with some of our cultural foods. What a great way to mix evaluation findings and our cultural heritage. “Findings Frybread” maybe?

  2. Sheila B. Robinson says:

    Love this! :-) Yummy!

    You could also do Findings Chocolates, where you print on the wrapper. I’d definitely take more of an interest in the study that way!

    I can see having people at tables and doing an interactive activity whereby they are asked to share their findings (from the cookies), and discuss with table groups to make sense of them, and maybe (depending on the context) even start to develop recommendations collaboratively.

  3. Alanna Koshollek says:

    This is so creative! I can’t wait to try this approach with our group. Thanks for sharing!

  4. Susan Kistler says:

    I meant to post back here but forgot. So…better late than never? After reading your post, and Sheila’s suggestion for Findings Chocolates, I decided to give them a try. Here’s a tutorial on making chocolate wrappers for the data diva’s chocolate box http://thesmarterone.com/2014/03/26/the-data-divas-chocolate-box/.

    You always inspire. Thank you Stephanie!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

@KZOODISTILLING the people of kalamazoo demand details.

RT @RadPresenters: We are recording our next episode soon & we'll block out time to answer your Qs. What are you struggling with? Send ques…

Looking for an embeddable survey tool that will let respondents use a slider to position themselves on a spectrum. Know of any?

Check out the expanded #dataviz section of @BetterEval that we've been cooking up! http://t.co/Qf85ZhiNgk #eval

Afternoon friends: The rules about when it's ok to NOT start your axis at zero. http://t.co/jDOKX3lP2o #dataviz

RT @esjewett: @evergreendata Yes! Also when the traditional 0-value is no more meaningful than any other value. Temperature, for instance.

RT @AnnKEmery: [New post] Span Charts: When you've only got the min and max, not a mean/median/frequency http://t.co/WQeKFvp0RF http://t.co…

Perhaps a controversial post: When It's Ok to NOT Start your Axis at Zero http://t.co/SdDeI7sHqP #dataviz

RT @parisakharazi: Useful find: Introducing the Data Visualization Checklist - http://t.co/oYPunrz33g Thanks for the great tips! @evergreen