I first learned about this term as a television news producer working for a local PBS station. While sitting around in various meetings, we were told about the need to “prove our performance” once we finished a grant-funded project. The bottom line was to prove to those who provided the funding that their money worked. As I recall, the standard technique was to write a long report with embedded spreadsheets in a style an auditor could review and approve.  Because this was a television station, video often accompanied whatever paperwork we sent.

I recently videotaped a health conference with various speakers – interesting, relevant stuff, to be sure. I edited each presentation and then developed a two-DVD set in a standard case with a nice cover. I hope the discs will be set out to potential users as well as the speakers.

I also hope the funders for the health conference will get a few copies of the DVD to use as evidence that their money worked. What better way to prove the performance of their investment than through a colorful, professionally produced DVD!

Perhaps I’m a bit obvious in what I’m talking about – that such communication tools as a DVD can go far to showcase your work. If such a need exists for you or your organization, why focus on speeches and indoor activities? Why not move the camera around and capture a wide variety of content? If your group provided scholarships to a dozen students,why not follow those kids around and videotape them attending class and talking about the scholarship and how it has made their dreams come true?

It would be easy to write for another several paragraphs, but I think – and hope – you get the point. Text and photographs – even websites – are wonderful tools. But video can do so much more by helping the viewer make an emotional connection to whatever message you’re trying to get across.

If the goal is to prove your performance, what better way than to show the results of that performance through the words and actions of real people?


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