Quaker A-Z: E is for Evaluate, Evaluate, Evaluate!

Quakers say all time is sacred because it was created by G-D.

So how best to use this time we have been gifted?

evaluation magnifying glass
Photo by Markus Winkler on Unsplash

“An unexamined life is not worth living”

Let's think about evaluation...

As is often the case, I find you need to strike a balance. It can be easy to get caught up in examining what has been done, and meticulously planning things, to the point that not much ends up actually being put into motion. But on the other hand, it can be just as easy to keep doing what you’ve done before as “it worked”… even if it didn’t work that well!

Evaluation should follow action, then action should follow evaluation, and so on. Don’t let a yearning for perfection, or fear of mistakes, paralyse you. But don’t charge ahead without consideration either.

“Someone who engages in self-critical examination eventually becomes entangled with it. Socrates became entangled in dialectics, became unpopular, was accused of corrupting the youth and eventually sentenced to death.”

So. Where to start?

Get a drink, and perhaps a snack, then settle yourself comfortably.

Once suitably fortified, think about how clerking is working for you.

Consider each step; the planning, creating of agendas and drafts minutes, actual clerking, and then the actions and finalising of minutes. Try to include how others are affected by the clerking as well as yourself.

Does even thinking about any of the above blocks of responsibility make you cringe or sigh? Did anything happen in a specific meeting you’d like to prevent happening again?

If there is a clerking team then write out what you’d like to achieve together.

  • How would you like to feel this time next year?
  • Is there anything that you’ve been meaning to change, or wanting to tackle, and haven’t done so yet?

Yes, it may be not 1st January. However, Quakers say all days are equally sacred – and therefore are equally good for starting new habits.

  • Are there projects you want to be ready to start?
  • Or ones you hope to finish?

Deciding to create some corporate memory documentation, doing a data audit, a building tour, or sending members to a conference or on a training course, are all things that might be on your list.

  • What do you know you don’t want to do?
  • Where did things go wrong?
  • What mistakes were avoided?
  • Have you written down any lessons learned?
  • Amended or created policies to help prevent a repeat where necessary?

You can always go get a refill of your drink as necessary!

fear scrabble tiles saying, 'faith over fear'

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