Choosing a clear purpose is a critical part of doing a program assessment. Investing time in the upfront planning and design process can save time and ensure that your program is successful. While you are doing your needs assessment, consider what you really want to accomplish with your program. Having your team identify your purpose together will ensure that everyone’s expectations for the program align and will help you make the rest of the decisions in the program design process. Having a clear understanding of your purpose will also help you set up informative evaluations to make sure that your program is leading to the right results for you, your participants, and your stakeholders.

Work through creating your purpose by doing this exercise:

Why do you need this program?

As an example, maybe you've noticed that:

  • Newcomers are not sure how to do a Canadian job search.
  • Our organization lacks a method of training people to become community leaders.
  • Newcomers are having a hard time feeling at home here and many are leaving.
  • Newcomers do not know how to connect to the local business community.

Flip these needs to create goals.

Then your program goals could be to:

  • Train newcomers in Canadian job search methods.
  • Develop mentors as community leaders.
  • Guide newcomers in the cultural transition.
  • Create networking opportunities to bridge participants and the local business community.

Define what success will look like.

This will help you design your program evaluation later. Try to choose things that can be measured qualitatively (with stories) and quantitatively (with statistics). Maybe your success could be:

  • 10 mentees complete the program.
  • We run a monthly business networking event with 20 people attending on average.
  • After the mentorship program, newcomers feel more confident in their Canadian job search skills.

Sum it up in a purpose statement.

Your purpose statement should be unique to you but could include:

  • The need you hope to fill with the program.
  • The impact on your program participants or community.
  • Your definition of success.
  • Something that makes your program different from others.

An example purpose statement could be:

Our mentoring program will guide new arrivals in Alberta through local job search practices and help them integrate into the Canadian workforce and culture.

Want to Learn More?

Read Assess Your Mentorship Program Needs.

Learn more about how to align your program to your organization’s mission or purpose: Mentoring Programs that Work by Jenn Labine (book): Visit Website

Create a Mentorship Program

Are you ready to create a mentorship program in your community? Contact us to start the process.