Is there a recommended process for working on the self-assessment?

There is no one right way of working on this self-assessment. Many factors will affect how you choose to go about it. Here are some suggestions based on what has worked for others.

Tell people about it.

Let your colleagues, managers, staff and board members know about the self-assessment before you begin. Let them know what you are doing and why. Let them know what to expect, and how they can be involved.


Any organizational change process requires the engagement of the people it will involve and affect. Engage them early on, and you may minimize surprise and nervousness, address concerns, and build early buy-in -- helpful for when you ask people to act on the results later on.

Involve others in the process

Ask your managers, staff, and board members to help complete the self-assessment. Choose a few key people to work with you perhaps, or cast your net wider – we know of one small organization that involved the whole team to complete the assessment by consensus.

There are many ways you can do this – sit together as a group and work through the categories, or divide the work based on areas of expertise, for example. Share the effort in a way that makes sense for you.


Quality responses mean more useful reports. There are likely people in your organization who have more insight into some sections of the self-assessment than you do. Use that – involving key people in responding to the indicators will improve the quality of your answers, and thus the quality of the picture OrgWise gives you of how your organization is doing.

Education and team building. Other users have found that they learned a lot from sharing opinions, and from hearing other peoples’ perspectives. You may find new insight into your organization. You may also find opportunities for educating people – board members, for example – about your organization, its strengths, and the issues you face.

Improving communication. Involving people in the self-assessment process can also be good for communication within your organization. Using the process as a time to talk and weigh in about organizational issues together can be a starting point for open dialogue about your organizational capacity strengths and challenges.

Building investment in change. This is about buy-in again – people are often quicker to mobilize to participate in change when they’ve identified the needs themselves. Everyone likes to feel that their input is valued and spurs action.