Lucky me – I was “chosen” to represent people who purchased a new car and asked by MaritzCX to complete a consumer survey that will help manufacturer decision-making for future models. The problem is that this form is more like an inquisition than a survey.

The booklet is 10-pages long. It contains 66 distinct questions, which understates the number of queries actually being asked. One question literally fills a page in a teeny-tiny font (see photo) – asking for a 5-point rating on 76 different items. Another question has 68 different parts and many are disguised as part a, b, c although they are really distinct.

I like doing surveys and value market research, but this one is over the top. For my time – which would be considerable if I gave it any thought – I receive nothing, except to be entered into a drawing for $10,000, which is the same as nothing.

If you truly value the opinion of those you are asking, you need to demonstrate it in your survey design. Court the person whose input you seek and share the importance of their input. Make your time demand reasonable. Provide some compensation or acknowledgment of the time investment. Prioritize your questions instead of asking literally hundreds as this survey did.

Otherwise, “Survey Says”: Into the recycle bin it goes.

About the Author leadership dots by dr. beth triplett

I'm the chief connector at leadership dots where I serve as "the string" for individuals and organizations. Like stringing pearls together to make a necklace, "being the string" is an intentional way of thinking and behaving – making linkages between things that otherwise appear random or unconnected – whether that be supervising a staff, completing a dissertation or advancing a project in the workplace. I share daily leadership dots on my blog to provide examples of “the string” in action. I use the string philosophy through coaching, consulting and teaching to help others build capacity in themselves and their organizations. I craft analogies and metaphors that help people comprehend complex topics and understand their role in the system. My favorite work involves helping those new to supervision or newly promoted supervisors build confidence and learn the skills necessary to effectively lead their team.

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