January 8, 2010

Engaging Stakeholder Interest and
Loyalty Through Better Polling

You show me yours,
But I won't show you mine.

Huh?

We all know the deal is this: You show me yours, and I'll show you mine. It's an even exchange in which one party goes first.

But when it comes to how associations and companies poll/survey their stakeholders, it's a one-sided bait and switch. We're asked to show our thinking, to give our insights, but generally get nothing in return: no summary of the survey results so we can learn what others were thinking, and no explanation of what actions will be taken in response to the input.

While not everyone will want that information, many might find it desirable. And you have nothing to lose by sharing it unless ... and here's the big if ... nothing is going to change.

To receive more input, provide more output. Close the loop. If you want others to show you theirs, you need to show something in return. Doing so may create more loyal and engaged customers and members because they know their input matters, it influences decisions.

But you'll never know if you fail to show.

4 comments:

Dave Lutz said...

Jeffrey, great post! You're so right...associations really need to circle the wagon on member requests. It really goes a long way to delivering on their value promise.

I'll give you one more, in today's world they need to do it super quick and without writing a novel. Most members want the highlights with an ability to drill down for more details.

Dave Lutz - @velchain

Jeffrey Cufaude said...

Couldn't agree more Dave. That loop can cycle round and round pretty quickly, particularly if we learn how to ask just a few select questions at a time, but do so on a more regular basis. Hope all is well in your world.

Wes Trochlil said...

Jeffrey, this is exactly why I rarely reply to ANY survey (one-question surveys being the exception). Asking me for my input without giving me anything in return is simply rude.

Wes Trochlil, Effective Database Management

Jeffrey Cufaude said...

And that's why this is so important Wes: we lose thoughtful input from knowledgeable folks like you. The model has to shift.