Discuss: Creating Feedback Loops with Community Members

Posted 4 years ago at 12:45 am

Welcome to the discussion thread for the third week of Living Cities' free e-course: "The Why and How of Working with Communities through Collective Impact." The resources for this week will be released on March 31st. If you haven't registered yet, you can learn more and sign up for the e-course here.

This week, we are exploring community-centered “feedback loops” within collective impact initiatives. You can access the full module of resources here.

As a reminder, the learning objectives for this week are:

  • Understand the value of feedback loops for your collective impact initiative.

  • Become familiar with different approaches to creating feedback loops with community members.

  • Revise  “Assessing Your Engagement Strategies” from Module 1 based on what you learned from this module.

What are your questions about this topic? What in the readings does not make sense to you? What have been your "aha" moments, and your challenges? What do you want to share with others?

Use this discussion thread to connect with other participants and learn from each other.


Candy Hadsall

backbone organization

What is the quickest feedback loop to use for seeking assistance in writing a small RFP that we want to reach smaller organizations/coalitions that may not have applied for a government grant before?

Submitted by Candy Hadsall on Fri, 2015-04-03 11:31

Brittany Ramos

funder of initiatives, blog contributor

Candy- I encourage others with specific experience to respond and defer to their knowledge on this one! But generally speaking, I would suggest a "Lean Startup" approach,  or basically starting somewhere simple so you can learn what works quickly, rather than going through a long planning process. This alleviates the pressure of feeling like you have to get it right the first time because you are able to start somewhere and learn fast until you get it right. A good place to start is figuring out where your target audience currently there a website, physical place, network, etc where they currently engage? If so, how can you go meet them where they already are? I went to a workshop with Moves The Needle and they challenged us to come up with a way to test our strategy in the next 2 hours. Of course, this may or not be realistic for real world work but it was a great way to start changing the way we think! Module 4 has more detail on this kind of lean and design thinking so I hope it is helpful to you! And would love to hear more about what you end up doing! 

Submitted by Brittany Ramos on Wed, 2015-04-08 12:17

This entire module really did a great job of emphasizing how and why each participant/perspective is needed to make meaningful change. I particularly enjoyed the article "Listening to Those Who Matter Most, the Beneficiaries."

To be effective through our efforts is my biggest excitement and insecurity as project beginings approach. These lessons helped me to recognize that my interest and ability to listen will not be enough. That the importance of listening is an issue to be advocated for and an action many need to be reminded of. I'm certain a challenge of collective impact work is not only listening, but encouraging others in the group to take part as listeners too. Not just collecting feeback and data, but really listening to what it says and considering what that means to the people you hope to help... This of course leads to many questions: How can the information be used to create real benefits? What role do the beneficiaries have in the sustainability and success of an impact initiative? Where do you or the organization fit into that?

Submitted by Jennifer Griffin on Sun, 2015-04-05 20:13

Brittany Ramos

funder of initiatives, blog contributor

Jennifer- I love your reflection on the module and I am so glad you posted it! We just released week 4 and in my blog I talk about how thinking of all the lobbying needed for Collective Impact as Marketing can help reframe the work. I know that connection is a stretch for some but your example of needing to raise awareness about the importance of listening WHILE listening is a perfect example of that!

Submitted by Brittany Ramos on Wed, 2015-04-08 12:14

Brittany Ramos

funder of initiatives, blog contributor

I orignally responded here but then decided to respond individually to the comments and not sure how to delete this :) So since I have the space anyway, I'll just say thanks for the comments and questions and please keep them coming! 

Submitted by Brittany Ramos on Wed, 2015-04-08 12:18

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