Top Ten Excuses for not Evaluating

April 7, 2006 at 12:20 pm 7 comments

This post at the IABC measurement blog caught my attention, as its author asks the question:

“So why don’t we measure more? Is it budget, competencies, time or the risk of accountability?”

People usually don’t evaluate for various reasons, but the most common excuses I’ve heard are the following:

  1. “It’s too expensive”.
    With the amount of free advice, excellent guidelines and cheap research solutions available, this doesn’t pass anymore.
  2. “I don’t know how to”.
    Fair enough, but you can learn a lot yourself without having to engage expensive consultants.
  3. “I’m too busy “doing” to be bothered with measuring”.
    Frightening. People love doing things, it’s natural. But sometimes you have to stop and take a step back to see what you have achieved.
  4. “What I’m doing couldn’t possibly be measured”.
    Often heard from the Creative Type. People who create their own fonts, too clever campaigns and beautiful artwork that impresses other Creative Types. But my question is – what did you change?
  5. “I don’t see the value of it”.
    How else can you judge the value of your work if you don’t attempt to analyse and assess it?
  6. “I’m scared what of what I will find out”.
    But I think it will be scarier for you if you don’t evaluate and someone else does.
  7. “People are fed up with giving their opinion”.
    I don’t think people are – as I’ve written about before.
  8. “My gut feeling tells me I’m doing a good job”.
    There is a certain vogue that says out intuition is often our best call. But research often brings out issues that were not even on your radar.
  9. “All my work is vetoed by the CEO, if s/he’s happy so am I”.
    The CEO sees the organisation through the same rose-colored glasses as you do. In PR, it’s your public’s perception of your communication that counts.
  10. “You can’t prove anything anyway”.
    You can rarely obtain 100% proof that your programme caused the change seen. But what you do is collect evidence that indicates the role your activity played, as I further explained in this post.


Entry filed under: Communication evaluation, General, PR evaluation.

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7 Comments Add your own

  • 1. PR Measurement - Top 10 reasons for not measuring  |  May 3, 2006 at 5:29 pm

    […] Glenn O’Neill at the Intelligent Measurement blog brings to our attention a recent post on the IABC Measurement blog that compiled the top 10 reasons PR people don’t measure. […]

  • […] Auf, einem relativ frischen Blog zu PR-Evaluation, bin ich auf einen Beitrag von Glenn ONeill hingewiesen worden, nmlich die Top-10 Entschuldigungen, (PR) nicht zu evaluieren (frei bersetzt): […]

  • […] Looking further into outcome evaluation in different fields, I came across a very good resource with a rather quaint title: The Basic Guide to Outcomes-Based Evaluation for Nonprofit Organizations with Very Limited Resources.  Interesting to note the similiarities between my own top ten excuses for not evaluating and the common myths about evaluation that the author lists; as follows: Myth: Evaluation is a complex science. I don’t have time to learn it! No! It’s a practical activity. If you can run an organization, you can surely implement an evaluation process! […]

  • 4. Katie Delahaye Paine  |  June 21, 2006 at 9:38 pm

    i love it! I’ve been giving a presentation about once a month called “NO more excuses” that essentially says the same thing, but you’ve come up with a few more lame excuses I hadn’t even thought of. Thank you!

  • 5. Glenn  |  June 22, 2006 at 7:00 am

    Thank you Katie, as I am a regular reader of your blog, your posts and stories certainly inspired some of these points!


  • 6. Top Ten Excuses for not Evaluating at Duane Brown’s Blog  |  August 18, 2006 at 10:01 pm

    […] Maybe that quote is right, but check out the post and see for yourself. […]

  • […] I agree fully. Then he went on to explain the reason “why”. For Mr Burson, the reason is cost – PR research and measurement is too expensive, he mentioned that often research to evaluate can often cost as much as the activities itself.  And that’s where I disagree – PR measurement does not have to be expensive. Most capable communication managers should be able to manage measurement tasks themselves through using low cost media monitoring services, easy-to-use online surveys and innovative methods such as case studies and tracking mechanisms.  To get started, check out the guidelines from the Institute for PR. And there are certainly other reasons why communication professionals don’t evaluate. […]


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