Practitioner competence is a critical ingredient in the development of a robust, valid and equitable evaluation. In Aotearoa New Zealand the evaluator competencies identify cultural competence as a core capability. There are some particular challenges that P?keh? (New Zealand European) evaluators face in developing this competency. In grappling with these complex challenges, and in the absence of a pragmatic and systematic way of responding, the writers discuss the use of a heuristic they have developed that may aid enquiry and support evaluators to work in a culturally responsive manner. Three case examples are presented for applying the heuristic in practice. The benefits of, and insights from, using the heuristic are discussed.