The final stage of evidence-based practice is evaluating your own performance (Figure 11.1). This has two aspects: firstly, on a technical level:
Evaluating your performance in this context helps you become a better evidencebased practitioner.
Secondly and more importantly, has the service that you introduced or modified as a result of undertaking the evidence-based process actually made the anticipated difference? Evaluating your performance in this context helps you become a better evidence-based practitioner. As Todd (2002) identifies: ‘evidence- based practice thus has two important dimensions. First, it focuses on the conscientious, explicit and carefully chosen use of current best research evidence in making decisions about the performance of the day-by-day role. Second, evidence-based practice is where day-by-day professional work is directed towards demonstrating the tangible impact and outcomes of sound decision making and implementation of organizational goals and objectives’.
Evaluation will consider both direction and degree; did the intervention have the planned effect (as opposed to the opposite effect) and did the effect have the expected magnitude? It may also lead you to redefine the original problem (Figure 11.1).
Because change strategies involve organizational and individual factors, differences between what you anticipate and what actually happens can have various causes: