We receive report cards while attending school to monitor our progress and determine the quality of our efforts. They provide a baseline from which we can improve our performance. Some approach report cards with dread while others display gleeful anticipation. Each outlook has some correlation to performance.
As business owners and managers you certainly hear comments and critiques from employees and customers. Your initial reaction may be to disregard these evaluations as baseless bellyaching from the “Negative Nancy’s.” You may be inclined to brush the comments off or you may be listening, but since they are issued at random intervals, may have difficulty seeing the trends.
So, why not come right out and ask your employees and/or customers to give your business or your products a report card? We understand it can be difficult to hear harsh reviews but just like the goal of the educational report card, direct and open feedback can help your business to grow and a survey can serve as that report card. Surveys can be an invaluable tool for gathering the random comments and complaints into a collective data source that can help you improve and help your business thrive.
According to Survey Monkey, the online survey platform, “Customer satisfaction surveys give you the insights you need to make better decisions. In fact, they have found that businesses who regularly measure customer satisfaction are 33% more likely to describe themselves as successful over those who do not perform any kind of business evaluations.”
Surveys can be used for all sorts of data gathering, not just to assemble a performance report card or customer service satisfaction levels. Survey your employees to see how you can help increase work/life balance or create a more harmonious corporate culture; survey expo attendees before attending a trade show to get a gauge of what they are expecting or what information they are most hoping to gather; survey the readers of your blog to find out if you are providing information on those topics they really want to read more about…the possibilities are endless.
The analytics, marketing and testing blog, Kissmetrics, confirms the value of the survey but makes it clear that the survey is only as good as the questions you ask. I have created the survey below by following the guidelines from their blog post, “Survey Questions that Work, How to Unlock Your Customers’ Deepest Desires.” The primary factor I applied was to Keep It Simple – as the name of the blog implies.