Collaboration, Learning and Adapting for Better Decisions & Impact


How does Collaboration, Learning and Adapting approach is helping us ? The approach has shown us a way to go beyond our own assumptions and understand perception of others around us. In development sector, we engage stakeholders involved in projects and programs like donors, clients, partners, vendors, government, NGO’s,  field staff, office staff and consultants through communities, networks and work groups. The process is more about engaging through internal and external communication.

This approach is useful when we are involved in international development programs. Development sector needs CLA approach to increase outreach by going beyond the boundary of domains we are working in. Once we do so, we enter a new world of learning by interacting with people across other sectors. Even when we are not officially working, its useful to embed the CLA approach in our daily life. Learning from people opens a window to allow new things to come in, which creates enhanced impact.

Outcomes of collaboration includes knowledge and data which enhances Knowledge Management systems which later can be leveraged to deliver training & learning and keeping up-to-date with new trends. The process involves research,  analysis and getting inputs from subject matters experts to deliver webinars, events, presentations, reviews, communications/PR products and knowledge exchange sessions.

In today’s changing world, Monitoring & Evaluation processes needs to address challenges faced in data collection, data management, data analysis and data visualization & intelligence which keeps changing with changing environment factors, government priorities, economic contexts, health & well being conditions and various other contexts.  These challenges appears only when we empathize with people to understand what they want and what they don’t under difference contexts. Once we are aware of this, we can act, design, optimize solutions accordingly. Collaboration helps us to build an understanding by keeping people in heart of development program.

Latest technologies like ODK, Epicollect, Magpi, Whatsapp, Surveymonkey, Mailchimp etc helps in recording experiences with people. These systems are portable and talk to systems that later could be used as KML systems to share experiences and data. The techonologies like STATA, R, SAS, Tableau, Power BI helps us discover insights and and useful information which can be shared on KM systems for Learning. Qlickview, R, Plotty takes us to the next level of data visualization and building data intelligence. This intelligence shifts us from the world of descriptive analytics to prescriptive analytics, so actually enabling us to know what, why and how to make things happen which ultimately support decision making for internal operations and expansion of services.

The adaptation occurs once we have finally learned, predicted and created forecast of strategic actions required to be taken or interventions that needs to be made. We start planning, make strategic decisions, create policies, innovation, iterations, design and organizational changes based on evidences.  The phase of betterment of processes initiates resulting in cultural shift.  In reality, CLA approach sits within every process of development and decision making. Need of the time is to understand how it helps to improve and empower us to create effective development programs. Need of time is to understand how CLA processes helps us to embrace a change with ease to create impact that matters.

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