The Canadian Guitar Forum banner
1 - 20 of 35 Posts

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
5,545 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Every couple of days I get a request to complete a survey. I get that companies want to improve but I'm sick of being a free source of constructive feedback. I'm done with surveys at least for a while. Anyone else?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,492 Posts
I never do these surveys. I work in the IT department of a company that designs survey programs for businesses. Mostly mystery shop programs. So we don't call people up. We run these programs for our clients who pay us to do it.
So I never do these free surveys. It feels like I'm doing something that I should be getting paid for.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,522 Posts
Every couple of days I get a request to complete a survey. I get that companies want to improve but I'm sick of being a free source of constructive feedback. I'm done with surveys at least for a while. Anyone else?
I have always refused and always will. Completing a survey usually does two things:

1. Tells strangers something about you that they - or someone else they sell your information to - can use in a future attempt to sell you something, and

2. Tells strangers that you're willing to complete surveys and share information about yourself.

The second is often more valuable than the first. A primary reason that political polls have lately sometimes been way off in predicting results is that ever-fewer people are reachable and willing to complete surveys. Knowing about people who *will* complete surveys is a big asset in the information age. Getting yourself on some of those lists will certainly get you more requests to complete surveys.

And that's just the tip of the iceberg. Huge databases are being developed by some of the biggest companies in the world, and by government agencies, and at least some of them likely already contain profiles of you and your life and your interests that might shock you in their detail and their accuracy. Some of the information in them contains or is extrapolated from innocuous online surveys you've completed.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
28,362 Posts
Sometimes I'll do them, buy not very often, and only if the subject matter is of interest to me as a survey designer.

Political polls are less accurate these days because landlines can't be relied on to identify a truly stratified random sample as they would have been 25 years ago. If anybody asks me something I would rather they not know, I simply decline to answer the question. When it comes to market-research surveys, companies tend to piggyback on a survey, such that multiple products might be asked about in the same survey. The majority of them are things that simply don't apply to me, so that makes such surveys a lot shorter.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,942 Posts
I will do them only if they are directly from a company or organization I have a relationship with. Quite often they are trying to rationalize moving forward with feature requests or trying to understand end user work flow. Izotope and Universal Audio come to mind, and the reciprocate by bringing out new products or services that are useful.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
5,545 Posts
Discussion Starter · #17 ·
What like email surveys or something? Just ignore them man!
I do and then they send reminders that increase the guilt level:
1) Please complete the survey, your feedback is important to us
2) We noticed you haven't yet completed the survey, we really need input from people like you!
3) Our company may not survive without your wisdom
4) Please complete the survey, our CEO won't let us go home!
5) My colleague ate the last banana, we're down to pumpkin seeds, please complete the survey
6) Monica just died and Justin isn't looking so good. Can you please complete the survey so we can go home!
7) I'm the last one left, I think the CEO ate Justin, this may be goodbye, have you done the survey yet?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
16,159 Posts
Every couple of days I get a request to complete a survey. I get that companies want to improve but I'm sick of being a free source of constructive feedback. I'm done with surveys at least for a while. Anyone else?
Is that a survey question?
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
28,362 Posts
Actually, organizations, and organizational units that specialize in surveying the same group of people, worry about "survey fatigue". Trouble is, they don't all necessarily talk to each other to know just how much surveying is going on, overall, being primarily concerned with their own surveying objectives, rather than the general public's interest in being, or willingness to be, surveyed.

I worked for many years in the area of employee surveys, both designing survey instruments and analyzing and communicating data patterns. Canada had surveyed its employees every 3 years to identify systemic issues, and the outcomes of any interventions intended to fix those issues identified in a previous survey ( Public Service Employee Survey - Canada.ca ). The Americans have a similar survey ( OPM.gov ), but under GWB, it was mandated to take place EVERY year, and the UK followed suit a few years back ( Launching the 10th annual Civil Service People Survey - Civil Service ) with an annual survey. In both the U.S. and U.K. survey results have gotten more sour in many areas, year by year, and I have noted to many colleagues in both circles that this is partly a result of the annual repetition. I have consistently reminded decision-makers at Treasury Board that an annual cycle is unwise, for those reasons, but because the Yanks and Brits are doing it, senior management determined that we should too.

One of the maxims of organizational surveys is that you don't ask questions about things you either have no intention to fix, or can't fix (e.g., "Do you feel you are compensated fairly, compared to people in the private sector doing similar work?"), simply because every employee survey is an implicit promise to improve anything you inquired about. And because many systemic issues can take a while to turn around, asking again, before things have turned around, will generate highly cynical responses/opinions, because you haven't fixed it yet. Not so much a consequence of survey fatigue per se, as fatigue with what seems to be hollow good intentions from management. Of course, that little bit of experienced-based insight doesn't appear to persuade senior managers who think that there is no difference between an employee survey and a quarterly financial report - you simply gather the data, right? And of course, because every organization has retirements and departures each year, in addition to fresh blood being recruited, the impact of new hires thinking everything is peachy keen, tends to buffer the jaded views of remaining longer-tenure employees, such that the overall aggregate result gets a bit worse every year, but still looks remediable.

All of this is to underscore that over-surveying has its costs. It doesn't just piss off people picking up the phone, but can also yield misleading results.

I will close by noting that retailers can dangle the possibility of large prizes and gift certificates in front of me all they want. I will not be completing their customer surveys because I am not interested in receiving the glut of e-mail offers sure to follow, or in having to unsubscribe from all the things I would need to unsubscribe from.
 
1 - 20 of 35 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.
Top