Using Graphics for Presenting Impact
One of the challenges of all entrepreneurship support is the amount of time required before any startup firm produces economic results that those outside the field will consider impressive. This is particularly problematic for VDOs forced to defend their work on annual funding cycles.
Analogies of seeds planted now becoming mighty oaks in the future only go so far. In addition, some startup failures are expected for seasoned practitioners, but less well tolerated by those unfamiliar with the inevitable cycles and churning of innovation and business startup.
Fortunately, the impacts of VDOs are cumulative, growing year after year as the client pool expands, clients mature into successful companies, and the client continues to prosper. The growth curve is best presented graphically – and the growth curves of more established VDOs can help younger groups explain the potential and long process of sustained effort required to create a similar curve for their own client base (but on its own appropriate scale).
The visual representation allows for policymakers and other stakeholders at a quick glance to see the impact the VDO is having on their region. It also enables the VDO to graphically chart their impact over time, thus fulfilling the time in place metric.
Like reporting the other key metrics, graphical benchmarking can be done in a variety of ways. We offer a few examples from the field.
Examples of Graphical Benchmarking
Click one of the boxes below to see examples of graphical benchmarking for that impact.