Another Customer Survey?

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The Hiring Zone
Issue #11234 - January 2019 | Page #66
By Thomas McAnally

How do you measure customer satisfaction? Do you rely on your P&L, sales perception of your performance, the lost deal, the next order, the no-bid deal, your Google or Yelp score, or all of the above? Maybe the number of followers on your Facebook page? Do you wait for someone to complain or are you proactive? Maybe you send out periodical surveys or follow up on every interaction with a satisfaction survey?

It used to be a short sentence at the bottom of a letter. “Please tell us how we are doing or if we could have done better.” Now it’s an instant survey in the signature line. Did we meet your expectations? Yes/No. Every online chat ends with a survey. It even comes in your Auto Attendant, as a request before your call is directed. “After your call, you will be directed to a brief survey to measure how well we met your expectations. Press 1 for Yes, or press 2 for No.” If you say no, are you put in the slow hold line?

It seems everyone is asking, no demanding, that you give feedback on every contact you have with their company. From the last order to the last phone call, e-mails are sent asking you to take a brief survey. It almost becomes automatic to expect a request for feedback on every interaction, rate the seller, your opinion matters, take a brief survey. After all, you could win something! If you ignore the request, another follows, and another until you put them on your spam list. How’s that for feedback? It is almost like today’s culture of requiring immediate feedback in social media has become part of mainstream business. How often does the person at the check-out register hand you a receipt and tell you to go on line for a “Brief Survey,” and tell you they work for all 5 star reviews, hint-hint. Who has time for all of these surveys and what does it cost to administer them?

With all of the feedback, what happens to the data collected? Who collects and deciphers it? What is “trending good” and what is “trending bad?” You will eventually need a survey company to manage the data and provide you with a detailed report on how you are “trending.” With all of that information, you will need a Department of Surveys to decide what to do with all of that data.

I understand the need to know if poor service is hurting business, but constantly bothering people to provide feedback can produce a negative reaction too. It is almost to the point where I want to give feedback on their surveys more than their service. Finally, I’ve settled on only giving feedback when things go very bad, and sometimes when they go very good. I give feedback when I think it is needed or when I think it will help, and sometimes when I just want to rant. Still, is anyone listening? Press 1 for Yes, 2 for No...

You're reading an article from the January 2019 issue.

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