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Impact skills development and advice

Find impact-related advice, tools, and training for planning, skills development journaling, facilitation, organisational understanding, and evaluation.

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Project Planning

Impact work should be planned like any other project. When leading a project, take the time to identify clear aims and objectives, the most appropriate people to work with, and the most appropriate methods to achieve your aims. While projects often come from flashes of inspiration and incoming opportunities, planning your approach will allow you to create realistic expectations, and to mitigate any potential issues as your project develops.

Skills Development Journaling

Working on impact projects is also an opportunity for you to consider how your skills are developing, and what areas you may need to improve. Ensure that you check-in with project partners and colleagues to gauge how a project is going, and how your skills could be further developed. Project partners may have access to training and advice, while maintaining a short journal of reflections and opportunities for growth can be a helpful space for reflection.


Impact involves working with a variety of stakeholders and partners. Finding a way to ensure that their voice is heard, and that you are working towards a mutual goal is paramount for successful partnership working. When planning a session with your partners, it is important to think about who’s voice needs to be heard, and how best you can organise your session to allow this.

If working on a new project with partners, ensure that you all spend time understanding your motivations, outlining your goals, and sharing your strengths. 

Useful tools and training

Organisational Understanding

For staff and students accustomed to University life, it can be a challenge to understand the unique make-up of other organisations. When working with community or public groups, with policy makers, businesses, or any group of external stakeholders, it is important to take time to understand their organisational culture. It may make sense to approach people at different levels within organisations, and it may make sense to engage with these stakeholders to better understand how your impact project can create influence within their context.

Further reading


Understanding if you have been successful in your impact aims can only be achieved through thoughtful evaluation. Evaluation can be as simple as asking questions of yourself and your partners, and as complex as developing full evaluation frameworks. Always choose an evaluation approach that is more appropriate to the scale and needs of your project.

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