Success Case Method: Using the Success Case Method for Rapid Impact

Equip your team with the capability to design and conduct credible and actionable impact evaluations! The Success Case Method (SCM) provides a practical approach and useful tools for evaluating learning initiatives, and other performance improvement or change programs - from short cycle innovation “sprints” to longer term global projects.

What are the key ingredients of a SCM?

Evaluate and accelerate the impact of strategic initiatives by:

  • Capturing compelling snapshots of impact that inspire participation and support.
  • Identifying the factors that contribute to and inhibit impact.
  • Providing evidence-based recommendations to accelerate impact and spread innovation.
  • Communicating the story of your change initiatives with concrete evidence.

Learn from the Thought Leaders

Rob Brinkerhoff and Daniela Schroeter

Learn directly from the originator and thought leader of the SCM, Professor Robert O. Brinkerhoff, and evaluation expert, Professor Daniela Schroeter. Both have completed numerous impact studies for such organizations as the International Red Cross and Red Crescent, World Bank, World Meteorology Organization, Cargill, Kellogg Foundation, Merck, Ford Motor, Fannie Mae, Stanford University, INSEAD, and many more leading global companies, government agencies, foundations, and non-profit organizations.

What will you learn during the certification?

After completing the Certification, you will be able to:

  • Explain to others the essence and benefits of the SCM strategy and process.
  • Define when and why to use an SCM in your organization.
  • Give details about how a well-designed SCM study unfolds step by step.
  • Plan and conduct SCM studies in your organization.
  • Become a champion for how the SCM can be used to accelerate successful strategic change.

How will this learning be delivered?

  • Prepare for and consolidate learning from online sessions by completing self-paced assignments on the award-winning Promote digital learning platform (LxP).
  • Engage in three online live group Zoom sessions providing interactive experiences, discussions, reflections, and groupwork to enhance reflection, learning, and exchange.
  • Finalize your certification by completing your choice of a capstone assignment geared to your professional interest and needs.

Who should attend?

Anyone (corporate, public, and non-profit) who is interested in:

  • Evaluating the impact of a performance improvement program/strategy or change initiative.
  • Accelerating the impact of performance improvement interventions.

Individuals who have benefited from the program include change program leaders, human resource personnel, learning and development professionals, project managers, performance consultants, instructional designers, professional evaluators, and others.

Post-certification resource library and toolkit for ongoing application and completion of SCM projects

To support the implementation of your impact studies, the Certification includes access to a detailed digital library of SCM resources you can refer to on a “just-in-time and just-enough” basis to shape and support all steps of an impact study. This includes:

  • Templates related to completing SCM steps.
  • Exemplary proposals, impact maps, surveys, interview protocols, report sections, presentation materials, impact evaluation plans and budgets.
  • Audio examples of interviews.
  • Continued readings.

The certification learning experience and performance support tools enable champions to start conducting SCM impact studies by:

  • Identifying impact evaluation opportunities and benefits.
  • Planning and implementing SCM impact studies.
  • Preparing actionable reports with defensible conclusions and recommendations.

BEI will be available for follow-up and individualized consultation and coaching if needed, provided at reduced rates for certification graduates.

What is my participation commitment?

  • Approximately 2-hours of self-paced pre-work prior to each online session.
  • Attendance at (3) three-hour online sessions over three weeks.
  • Approximately 3 hours of independent work for a capstone assignment due 3 weeks after the last online session.


USD $2,395 per person

  • $1,895 per person Special Introductory Rate for 2024 sessions.
  • $1,295 per additional person (up to three) from the same organization.
  • In-house private session pricing on request for larger same-organization groups.

Payment will take place via Stripe. If you need a different means to process your payment or have any questions, please get in touch.


For Kickoffs: You will receive an email with information about how to prepare for and connect to the live sessions.

Summer 2024 session

Kickoff: June 5, 2024

Live sessions: 10:00am - 1:00pm EST (Find your time)

  • June 12, 2024
  • June 19, 2024
  • June 26, 2024

Fall 2024 session

Kickoff: October 30, 2024

Live sessions: 10:00am - 1:00pm EST (Find your time)

  • November 6, 2024
  • November 13, 2024
  • November 20, 2024

SCM Certification FAQs

Q: What if I cannot free up the time to participate in the three live group sessions?

Answer: The three live sessions are the heart of the Certification, and the learning activities are intended to reinforce understanding and learning. If your schedule forbids you to participate, then this program is not for you.

On the other hand, we do know that occasional unexpected commitments arise that may interfere with participating fully in a particular session. For this reason, participants can miss a maximum of 1 complete live group session and still be eligible for earning their certification through a make-up assignment. All live sessions will be recorded for people who wish to revisit them or fill in a missed portion.

Q: Will I learn everything necessary to plan and implement a SCM study?

Answer: Yes.

Doing SCM studies is a team sport and requires various skill sets for the different steps within the process. This certification focuses on knowledge around each step and understanding the various skill sets needed to conduct a SCM. You will be able to identify where you would need to pull in other team members to complement your skills. For example, you may be skilled in data collection and analysis and less experienced in conducting interviews. In this instance, relying on colleagues with interviewing experience would be helpful. Or, you may be very skilled in interviewing and will need to reach out to others for assistance in data collection and analysis. The knowledge you receive in the certification will provide you with an understanding of what each step is intended to produce along with examples that you can use when working with others on your team.

Q: Do I need data collection and analysis skills to successfully participate in the certification?

Answer: No.

Anyone with a few years of experience in learning, performance improvement, or other organizational change initiatives should be able to fully master and benefit from the program. As mentioned above, you will gain knowledge in each step of the SCM process and that will help you employ other team members whose skills sets will complement yours.

What people say...

I really enjoyed working on the assignments. It helped me a lot to self-reflect on my own practice and it inspired me on new perspectives of SCM application. Also, thank you for the great learning experience. It was a great pleasure to exchange with you, other facilitators and colleagues from other organizations on the SCM. What you do is a perfect example how learning should look like.

—Mirjana Rašić, Instructional Designer at ICRC

Thank you to the team at BEI for their excellent instruction and individualized attention to each learner. It was spectacular!

—Jeffrey Hillman, Monitoring And Evaluation Officer at Tillers International

Are you looking for the best approach to evaluate your training, innovation, or performance improvement initiatives? The answer is Brinkerhoff’s Success Case Method (SCM) certification. The SCM is a validated, reliable strategy for quickly measuring impact, and what has caused or prevented success. You will leave the course with a powerful, yet practical method, checklists, job aids, and the skills to rapidly assess the impact of your organization’s initiatives.

—Elaine Biech ATD’s 2020 Distinguished Contribution to Talent Development and author of Washington Post’s #1 best seller The Art and Science of Training

Rob Brinkerhoff has earned his place in the pantheon of the small handful of people who have been true innovators in workplace learning evaluation. His Success Case Methodology is a revolutionary tool for evaluating the success of learning and performance improvement programs. And now, Rob and his colleagues are providing us with a very special opportunity to dive deep to develop our skills in rapid impact evaluation in the newly offered SCM Certification program.

— Will Thalheimer, PhD, MBA, Principal, TiER1 Performance

For many years in my role as an organizational learning leader, I’ve led important learning initiatives that required an investment of time and money and also carried expectations for impact on the business.  As such, understanding what was working and where we could improve the learning experiences to get higher yield was important.

The Success Case study allowed me to approach the analysis of various learning initiatives with the mindset of continuous improvement—not one of “proving training worked”. We knew that it worked better in some areas than others, and I wanted to know why.   I like that the study is conducted based upon solid research principles and design, that the results were objective, and the report and recap provided a path for excellent discussion and decision making with my learning team and our business stakeholders.

—Julie Dervin

Some of our clients and partners

INSEADCargill logoWorld BankStanford UniversityMerck logoInternational Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement