Client Feedback Tool
  • Even Best Friends Need Feedback

    Posted on February 4th, 2015 Ryan Suydam No comments
    Even Best Friends Need Feedback

    I just received a call from one of our Client Feedback Tool users who needed help with a technical issue. While working with him (I’ll call him John), we began discussing a feedback response he just received.

    John’s client responded with all scores in the “Exceptional” range, and a Net Promoter Score of 10 (very likely to recommend him). The client even wrote in a comment: “Working with John is always an outstanding experience!” – What great feedback.

    Buried in all the glitter and gold, I saw something interesting. On one question, regarding managing the project budget, the client responded with an “Acceptable” answer – a full notch down from Met Expectations. As the Client Feedback Tool’s sliding scale prevents any “accidental” scores, the client had clearly dragged the score down. He had something to say.

    When I asked John about his strategy for following-up, I suggested that (as is best practice) he email the client first, inviting the client to a conversation about managing the budget. This heads up allows the client time to formulate thoughts and engage in the conversation. Then, follow-up at the scheduled time via phone or meeting to – as humanly as possible – address the challenges.

    John laughed lightly, and said, “Oh, there’s no problem here – he’s my best friend. I’ll just call him.”

    John has a good attitude here – he likes his client (and his client likes him), so they can openly talk about a challenge and work together on bringing improvement. That’s great.

    But the real lesson here, is that even though they are best friends, and can talk about challenging feedback openly – a simple, electronic feedback system was still instrumental in starting the conversation. As close as they may be, making it the client’s responsibility to introduce a concern puts an unfair burden on the client. Especially when they’re close associates or friends. So many people are timid about introducing criticism, or don’t want to hurt your feelings. Making them go first forces them into an uncomfortable position.

    A simple set of questions, posed between friends, is starting a dialogue that needed to happen.

    The closer your client is, the more I encourage you to experiment with feedback. These are the most valued relationships you have, they are the safest, and with a little discovery and improvement, these clients will grow into even bigger fans and advocates for you and your firm.

  • Firm Metrics + Client Metrics = Success

    Posted on January 7th, 2014 Ryan Suydam No comments
    Firm Metrics + Client Metrics=Success

    As the New Year begins, most businesses, including ours, look for ways to drive even greater success than last year. We’ve all heard Peter Drucker’s quote, “what’s measured improves,” so most of us measure financial metrics regularly to try and drive success. Are we on track to achieve our goals? Is a course correction needed? And if so, what do we need to change?

    If your firm is only measuring financial metrics, are you measuring all the metrics needed to create the success you want to achieve?  If what you measure, improves, what else could you (should you) measure? What else do you want to improve in 2014?

    Take a moment and think about that question.

    So what should you measure?financial growth

    If you are like most A&E firms, you evaluate project performance based largely on the efficiency with which the project is completed. Did your team complete the scope of work in the contract and meet the desired profit targets? Did the team provide the client with expected deliverables — without doing a lot of re-work or free work? Did they match deliverables to the contract and avoid scope creep?

    Measuring project efficiency is essential to success. So is having a streamlined process to completing similar projects. If your teams started from scratch every time they began a project without using what they had learned from previous, similar projects, there is no way they could achieve target profits. Talk about re-inventing the wheel!

    Here’s another question to consider. Does measuring efficiency proactively prevent profit killers like re-work or scope creep? Or is it a reactive measure?

    There is a certain logic to the idea that if each of your teams follows the project delivery process identified for a particular type of project, the outcome would be the same. Each client would receive ‘correct’ deliverables based on the scope outlined in the contract. So why doesn’t it seem to work out that way?

    For nearly ten years we have been working with clients in the A&E industry. We have heard hundreds of stories about projects that should have been successful but weren’t. They had everything. Good staff. Good client. Good process. And yet, the results were often not what they expected.

    No matter how great the project circumstances may be, each client is different, the same client will change over time, and the criteria for success keeps moving.

    Client Feedback Tool focuses on helping our clients achieve the long-term success they desire by measuring all the metrics important to project performance. As the title suggests, this includes measuring both financial metrics and client metrics. Client metrics measure how well your process is meeting your client’s expectations at each stage of the project. If your team is not asking whether their client’s expectations are being met, they are making three dangerous assumptions:

    • Their existing project delivery process will meet the expectations of a new client (or a new project manager for an existing client).
    • There are no external factors that might influence the expectations of a project manager they have worked with before on ‘this project’.
    • You and the client have the same understanding of project communication, deliverables, etc.

    When your firm uses real-time, project-based feedback, you give your clients the opportunity to share their changing preferences and priorities with you throughout the project. You eliminate the assumptions that can result in poor project performance and unmet expectations. You strengthen your relationships with your clients as they realize that you really care about their goals. And, because the feedback you request is designed to benefit your client, you also give them the ability to help you help them achieve the success they desire.

    And the benefit to your firm? You establish a reputation as experts. Elite players. Premium brand. This expert status has powerful financial impact. In addition to reducing or eliminating re-work and scope creep, you become the ‘go to’ firm for each of your clients, who then provide you with a steady stream of profitable work.

    As 2014 gets underway, let’s challenge ourselves. Instead of measuring the same things you have in the past and expecting different results, take the strategic step of tracking the metrics that matter. If what is measured improves, are you measuring the metrics needed to create the success you desire? Request a Live Demo to learn more about measuring client metrics to create firm success or give us a call at 866.433.7322.

     

     

  • Version 6.9 Released May 14, 2013

    Posted on May 17th, 2013 Matt No comments

    Release 6.9 of the Client Feedback Tool includes dozens of enhancements and improvements. I will summarize some of the most significant and readily apparent changes below. Many other improvements were added that fixed or modified issues ranging from a misspelling to browser display issues and will not be discussed in-depth.

    1. New reminders to follow up low scores

    Follow-up reminders are now available to remind you to follow up on any low scores you may have forgotten to address. Go to PREFERENCES> Set Preferences. Click on Alerts in the Feedback Settings tab. Check the box labeled ‘Remind of  follow-up to low scoring feedback.’ If you receive a survey response below your low-score threshold, and no follow-up is documented, a week later we will send you a reminder. Project and firm managers can also set reminders regarding follow-up to project and firm surveys, as applicable.

    2. Protect against duplicate take-survey reminders

    For your convenience, the Tool now has additional functionality to help prevent your recipients from receiving confusing multiple survey reminders. On the ‘Modify a survey sent’ screen, if you attempt to send a survey reminder to a recipient who was already scheduled to receive an automatic reminder, the Tool will tell you that an automatic reminder is scheduled. You can then choose to send both reminders, cancel the automatic one, or cancel (close) the manual one.

    Note: Typically you decide whether to send automatic reminders when you send a survey.

    3. New quick-link to Ultimate Question information

    You will find a new link on the Net Promoter Score (NPS) report (REVIEW FEEDBACK > Net Promoter Score). This link, ‘More Information about NPS,’ is just below the graph. Click the link to open a new window to our blog site and learn more about the Ultimate Question and your Net Promoter Score.

    4. Convenient links to additional data in basic reports

    On many reports, you will see more new underlined links that provide additional details regarding projects, recipients, and senders. One example: On your REVIEW FEEDBACK > Surveys sent screen, notice how the project names in the first column are underlined. If you click on a project name, a new modal opens to display additional information regarding that project, such as Question Category Average Scores in the Last 90 days and 360 days. You can also see how many survey Invitations and Replies have occurred in the Past 90/360 days.

    5. New ‘Survey’ report filter

    You can now filter your reports by Survey Template/ID in addition to the numerous other filters already offered. You can find this multiple-select basic filter on many REVIEW FEEDBACK reports, on the left side of the ribbon.

    6. DesignFacilitator is becoming the Client Feedback Tool

    DesignFacilitator’s Client Feedback Tool was originally conceived as a powerful tool for the exclusive use of design professionals – architects, engineers, interior designers, etc. However, over the years we found that many non-design service professionals— government, legal, construction— appreciate the simplicity and power of the Tool and value its reports. Consequently, we are transitioning our branding to simply the Client Feedback Tool. This transition requires no changes or action on your part. Both www.clientfeedbacktool.com and www.designfacilitator.com take you to the site.

    7. Firm Administrators (FA): Present tense answer scale added

    Previously, the Client Feedback Tool presented survey questions only in the past tense (Met Expectations, not Meets Expectations). Many of you have requested an occasional present tense survey question. The Client Feedback Tool sliding answer scale now supports this. The survey recipient will see the present tense answer choices when he/she is taking the survey. However, your report scales will continue to display in the past tense since the overwhelming majority of questions are worded as such.

    8. Firm Administrators can edit all member preferences

    An FA can provide enhanced service to all firm members. In MY FIRM > Users/Security > (member) Edit, you can edit management permissions, on-behalf-of permissions, and modify members’ preferences. Now an FA can even edit Firm Event alerts and permissions for a Firm Manager. This can be especially useful when adding new members— because sometimes with new experiences “It’s just faster to do it than to explain it.”

    9. Improved adding/importing

    We have improved the functionality when adding/importing contact or project data. Where appropriate, you can now merge new and existing company types and update project information while you are adding/importing the data.

  • Top 10 Feedback Techniques for Project Delivery

    Posted on May 13th, 2013 Ryan Suydam No comments

    Project delivery is all about taking an idea from concept through to production. Firms want their projects completed in the fastest and most cost-efficient manner possible, all without sacrificing quality. Incorporating feedback into a firm’s process helps the team perform at their best, while the very act of asking for feedback shows clients proactive and professional care. To help jump start your client feedback process, we’ve listed the top 10 feedback techniques to facilitate project delivery.

    1. Make it Comfortable.
    When requesting feedback make sure the process is comfortable to use for all parties. The more comfortable the process, the more likely both parties are to participate. A comfortable process means clients will not feel put on the spot and concerned about a confrontation. Focus questions on processes, not personalities, and offer a flexible answer scale to capture subtle nuances of perceptions.

    2. Create Actionable Results.
    An effective feedback technique requires data to enable follow-up. Be sure you are asking questions that allow you to retrieve measurable, actionable data. If the questions are too vague or too open ended, you won’t have the information that you need to take action.

    3. Process Focused.
    The questions asked should be about process rather than people or products. We aren’t looking to find out how well the client “liked” us, but rather where our process is working great and where it might need some improvement.

    4. Go Beyond Satisfaction.
    Ask your clients questions focused on their expectations, instead of their satisfaction, because satisfaction is the expected norm. The client’s perception of how you performed compared to their expectations is the key to knowing where to improve your project delivery process. Additionally, you’ll find 500% more exceptionally positive feedback than you will challenging feedback – and we all love to discover good news.

    5. Reduce Liability.
    When asking for feedback, focus on questions that can reduce liability and encourage positive outcomes. Just by asking for feedback throughout a project, you are creating a record of the service perceptions all along the way, reducing the chance of a lawsuit and increasing your ability to meet their needs. Feedback helps keep you and your client aligned on a common goal – a successful project outcome.

    6. Don’t Wait.
    Collect feedback throughout the project, not just at the end – when it’s too late to improve that project. Response rates are highest when the client senses his feedback might improve the project outcome. Once the project is over, the incentive to respond is gone.

    7. Make it Trackable.
    Tracking feedback responses isn’t complicated, but making sure everyone on your team gets the feedback they need, reviews it, and takes appropriate action can be much more challenging. Deploy good tools to capture who is asking for feedback, who’s responding, and who takes what action on each critical response.

    8. Use Instant Alerts.
    Collect feedback in a way that you can be instantly alerted to new feedback and drive real-time follow-up.  A good system will establish score thresholds that indicate, in real-time, when follow-up is required for exceptional circumstances. Make sure the right people are alerted so nothing falls through the cracks.

    9. Keep the Client First.
    Structure your feedback techniques so that it is quick and easy for the client to give you feedback. Don’t waste their time with long surveys or questions with answers that only matter to you.  Response rates are higher with multiple short surveys over a period of time, than with one or two long surveys sent less frequently.

    10. Follow up.
    Don’t neglect the follow up! A survey should always start a conversation, not replace one. Typically, follow-up is simply a personal acknowledgement that you saw and read the response. However, if any special situations were noted (either in scores or comments) be sure you open a dialogue to show how the feedback will change the process and project going forward.

    Each of these feedback techniques focus on a deliberate approach to your feedback collection efforts. Set your goals to collect actionable feedback in way that is easy for the client. Make understanding the results and following up easy for you too. See feedback as the opportunity that it is to improve your process, reduce your liability and become your client’s expert.

  • Think Happy

    Posted on November 2nd, 2012 Ryan Suydam No comments

    A lot of us might think that we need to be more successful in order to be happier, when in fact it’s probably the other way around.

    If we can increase our positive thinking, we can improve our other outcomes as well. I’ve always known the power of positive thinking, but hadn’t made the connection between that and what we do every day to help professional service firms. I was handed a copy of Selling Power magazine that included an article called “Benefits of a Positive Brain” by Kim Wright Wiley. The article suggests that managers can create a happier workplace by increasing praise and recognition.  Shawn Achor, author of The Happiness Advantage: The Seven Principles of Positive Psychology that Fuel Success and Performance at Work indicates that praising one person a day for a month can increase productivity 31%.

    In order to praise an employee, firm leaders have to recognize opportunities to provide the recognition. Busy leaders may not see all the great things their employees are doing or may not be in the right mind set to catch it. If you are a firm leader looking for simple but impactful ways to praise your staff, using feedback from actual clients can offer that simple step.

    Collecting feedback from the clients of a professional service firm offers employees direct praise from their clients, and gives firm leaders specifics to point to in order to offer praise. This positivity can spread into a happier workplace and happier workers. All this comes with an extra bonus – happier clients . . . and happier clients lead to the success you’re after.

  • Marketing with Client Feedback: Transpo Group’s Winning Methods

    Posted on April 13th, 2012 Matt 1 comment


    Headquartered in Kirkland, WA with offices around the western US as well as the Middle East, Transpo Group has been providing transportation planning and engineering solutions since 1975. A firm grounded in service to both their clients and their community, they strive to treat others as they would like to be treated, and to exceed client expectations.

    Committed to service and collaboration, they were excited to partner with DesignFacilitator and use the Client Feedback Tool to learn more about the quality of their client services. By using a tool that systematically collects data on a numerical scale that can be merged and tracked over time, Transpo Group has the opportunity to see both a snapshot view of their client feedback and long term trends.

    Asking for feedback regularly gives Transpo Group the data they need to determine what practices or ideas lead to client satisfaction, and also identify areas where their process may need adjustment. Because the feedback surveys are tied to specific projects, they can pinpoint exactly where more attention is needed, and give their client a chance to offer positive feedback or voice any concerns that were not addressed in previous conversations. It offers clients an easy and comfortable way to offer their suggestions and their positive comments and praise.

    Transpo Group is using the overwhelmingly positive results of their feedback in a creative way. They periodically summarize their consistently great results, and place them into a chart posted directly onto their website. Additionally, testimonials and rave comments collected via the feedback process are displayed in rotation on the page’s side-bar. Now, when clients visit the firm’s website, they can view evidence that the firm is truly dedicated client service and strong relationships. (See adjacent image.)

    Learn more about how to incorporate client feedback into your marketing efforts by exploring our blog. Find tips on how to get your firm into the Top 3%  by both collecting and taking action on your feedback,  read Koontz Bryant’s Client Feedback Journal describing how they started using feedback to improve their business, or learn Who should be asking for feedback and why its important to do it in a way that gives your firm honest, valuable information.

  • Can the Ultimate Question Help Your Firm?

    Posted on March 7th, 2012 1 comment

    Net Promoter – Now Offered in Client Feedback Tool 

    Based on popular demand, we are pleased to announce that the Client Feedback Tool version 5.3 now includes support for the Net Promoter Score/Ultimate Question survey methodology. Read on to understand what this is, how it complements our current system, and how to start using it. 

    Net Promoter Score Overview 

    In recent years, the Net Promoter Score (NPS) customer satisfaction system has become a popular and widely used management metric. Many modern satisfaction and Voice of the Customer (VoC) programs in some way incorporate NPS as a device. 

    The founding principles of NPS can be found in The Ultimate Question, a book by Fred Reichheld. In short, Reichheld lays out a methodology in which ONE QUESTION (the Ultimate Question) provides data highly predictive of future growth and success. 

    Based on extensive and sound research, NPS provides a simple, single metric by which to track your outcomes and progress. The basic question asked is: 

    How likely are you to refer us to a colleague? 

    The answer scale ranges from 0-10, very unlikely to very likely. The theory of NPS is that anyone answering 0-6 are detractors, people who will ultimately speak poorly of your company and services. Those responding with scores of 7 and 8 are passives, those who will likely neither promote or defame your company. Finally, the promoters are those providing scores of 9 and 10 – they are very likely to promote your organization to others. 

    Your Net Promoter Score (NPS) is the difference between promoters and detractors. For example, if you have 52% promoters and 18% detractors, your NPS is 34. Passives in this case don’t count. 

    The very best corporations in America receive NPS scores consistently in the 75% range (think Apple, USAA, Google). Others, such as Time Warner Cable and many other telecoms actually have negative Net Promoter Scores (more detractors than promoters). 

    You’ll find extensive research by many pundits showing the correlation between revenue, profit, and market-share growth based on NPS. And while NPS provides a single, simple metric to show where your company currently is, the process of actually improving your NPS is much more nebulous. 

    Using Feedback to Improve NPS 

    Wait a minute.  I thought NPS was feedback. 

    Yes, NPS is a form of feedback.  But NPS is limited to telling you where you are right now (and where you’ve been, once you have history). It doesn’t provide direct insight in how to actually get better. NPS is like a street sign. The sign indicates where you are – but you need the GPS to help you navigate to where you want to be. 

    The Ultimate Question typically includes a “part 2” – which is to ask “Why did you give this score?” By harvesting this data organizations are able to gain insights on what customer perceptions are trending. This may work well for very large data sets – and is well suited to Business to Customer measurements. 

    Professional services, on the other hand, are much more personal and interactive. You don’t often have massive data sets to work with, and the value of each client tends to be a much larger percentage of your net revenue. It’s therefore relevant to use the Client Feedback Tool’s established methodology tracking client expectations in six to eight key categories (helpfulness, responsiveness, quality, accuracy, schedule, budget, etc). 

    Measuring these at major milestones during project delivery provides clear, specific, and concise guidance for how to get better for each client. During the project, when you can do something about it. Net Promoter Score becomes an additional question to ask at project completion, to identify how well you executed and created a potential promoter. 

    In contrast to our self-centering expectations scale, the NPS score is logarithmic. There is a ceiling, and as you improve over time the upward trend in NPS will become smaller and smaller, until you level out somewhere around 80% (the level the very best companies have attained). Once your NPS is higher than anyone else in the market, you have lost your ability to measure further improvement. You can no longer try something new and observe a shift in scores validating the new process actually worked better. So, while NPS is very helpful to track progress over time and understand your market position, it can’t help you identify the value of your continued improvement efforts. 

    NPS: Part of Your Complete Feedback ProgramThe Client Feedback Tool enables you to track your own performance relative to expectations, and continuously improve (even if you are already the best in the market). Adding the NPS to your approach, you can now see if you are indeed market-leading. The Net Promoter Question can be added to any survey on the fly when sending, enabled to be on by default for selected templates (e.g., a Project Completion survey), or built into the survey template design when our team creates a custom template for you. 

    Learn More 

    For questions or help with NPS, or any broader feedback questions, please contact us at answers@designfacilitator.com and one of our consultants will help you on your feedback journey.

  • Koontz-Bryant, PC – Client Feedback Journal, Part 4

    Posted on October 26th, 2011 Matt No comments

    Join us as we follow Koontz-Bryant, P.C. as they use client feedback to improve their business, culture, and overall prosperity.  In the fourth installment, Martha Shotwell, Controller, describes the varied ways in which they use the feedback they collect and the benefits of an on-site consultation from DesignFacilitator staff.  Read previous entries here: Journal Entry 1, Journal Entry 2, Journal Entry 3.

    KB Logo Koontz Bryant, PC   Client Feedback Journal, Part 1

    Part 4

    When we implemented the Client Feedback Tool, we had certain expectations about how we would use the survey data.  We expected to stimulate dialogue with our clients; to identify opportunities for improvement; and to collect information about group and staff performance.  We found the program to be effective in these areas.  With an onsite visit from DesignFacilitator consultants, we were challenged to do even more with the data.

    As we reported last time, we kicked off our program with general satisfaction surveys to faithful clients, initiated by our company president.  Many of the respondents singled out individual employees for praise.  The surveys gave us an additional opportunity for a client “touch” – to thank the client for responding, to show gratitude for their kind words, to reinforce in the clients’ minds how happy they were with us – and to ask for referrals.  When we moved on to project-specific surveys initiated by project managers, the feedback became more specific.  Through this tool we discovered that a client needed to see invoice information a different way.  Another client rated us as merely “acceptable” on “scope and fees.”  This presented an opportunity for a frank discussion with the client about pricing.  Turns out she had beat us up over price and had gotten a reduced fee – which allowed no room for the extra attention to which she was accustomed.  We have had numerous occasions to chat with clients as a result of feedback.

    After we were up and running for a few months, Ryan and David from DesignFacilitator came to our office for an onsite consultation.  We were doing a good job responding to individual survey data.  However, they observed that we were not harnessing the power of the reports.  Armed with reports consolidating our company data, they demonstrated that we have a great story to tell.  Using Advanced Reporting Tools, they had produced a pie chart showing our results by performance category.  Fully 77% of the responses showed that we had exceeded expectations or better.  Our consultants recommended that we find a way to make this a part of our company narrative.  They showed us statistical reports showing averages by question category.  We also spent some time analyzing the bar graph report, to isolate particular groups who had unusual aggregate responses.  Seeing that one group, for example, always scored “exceptional” in the “scope and fees” category, for example, might be indicative that this department has set its fees too low.  We have continued to explore the advanced reporting options available to us.  For example, we have made good use of the “Tags” feature.  We can limit reports based on project type or company type, but at times a broader criterion is warranted.  As Firm Administrator, I have created a few tags on which I can filter my reports.

    To use the survey results to tell our story, we enlisted our new Marketing Director and social media guru.  Alyah wrote a news piece for our website.  Using data from the reports, she created a bar chart to illustrate our results.  She sent a “Survey says” Tweet with a link to the story, and promoted it on Facebook.  After getting clients’ permission to publish their responses, Alyah plans to include client comments on our web page.  We have also begun modifying our printed marketing materials and presentation outlines to incorporate client care as a differentiator.

    Our DesignFacilitator consultants had also advised that we promote our survey results within our company.  We have posted summaries on the company intranet, and we encourage all staff to use our great feedback to promote Koontz-Bryant.  On a large whiteboard in the breakroom, we periodically post a “Client Feedback Quote of the Day” culled from the comments.  Praise for employees by name becomes public in a low-tech, high-touch way.  This has generated some great whiteboard kudos and prompted some great conversations.

    When Ryan and David visited with us, they helped us use the Client Feedback Tool in a fuller technical capacity.  More important than that, however, they gave us some sound business and marketing advice.  In a business where the things we do can be perceived as commodities, they have helped us to position ourselves as client caretakers.

  • Feedback Action: Be in the Top 3%

    Posted on September 29th, 2011 No comments
    Feedback Action: Be in the Top 3%

    Our research shows fewer than 15% of firms collect feedback regularly.  Forrester researchers indicate fewer than 20% of firms take any action on the feedback they collect.  These indicators suggest only 3% of firms have an effective process to both collect feedback and turn that feedback into action.

    And yet, without action, collecting feedback is really a futile and useless activity.  Turning feedback into action requires a framework and a process to support an effective, simple, feedback collection/response mechanism.

    Our Client Feedback Tool captures and automates the entire feedback process, and is customized for professional services organizations.  The latest release (v4.3) includes new, extended capabilities to confirm your feedback reactions were effective.

    Feedback begins with the questions.  We’ve designed each to be focused, specific, and concise in order to collect clear metrics.  Survey designs must then collect an appropriate number of questions in a relevant manner, so that you only ask the right questions when needed – minimizing wasteful efforts.  Your clients don’t have time to waste, so answering questions that provide them no tangible benefit ultimately discourages their participation.

    When someone responds to a feedback request, action can only happen if someone is alerted to the results.  Particularly for professional services firms, feedback works best in real-time.  Immediately after someone responds, our feedback process alerts everyone who needs the alert, based on what kind of scores were provided.  Don’t limit feedback to just the president or someone in marketing – action happens best when the people doing the work get the feedback.

    Which brings us to the action.  The people taking care of the client – those actually doing the work – must know what the feedback is before they can take any action on it.  The Client Feedback Tool’s real-time alerts link your firm’s team members to the feedback they are responsible for.  Upon reviewing the results, each person can document, within the tool, what their follow-up actions have been or should be.  They may even respond to the client directly from the tool, tracking that response as part of the feedback record.   By responding to the client (in any manner) and logging the response (using the tool), we have demonstrated an 83% reduction in further client-identified problems.

    Now, in the latest version of the Client Feedback Tool, you can take this process one step further, completing the feedback cycle.  Beneath each feedback response you can click one button which initiates another follow-up survey in the future.  By linking these two surveys, you can track your progress and confirm that the actions taken to respond to a client have indeed been successful at better meeting client expectations.

    Demonstrating this simple, systematic feedback process to existing and prospective clients is a great differentiator in the marketplace, and builds trust that you listen, respond, and confirm your processes are the best they can be for each client.

  • Creating Incentive for a Creative Workforce

    Posted on August 26th, 2011 No comments
    Creating Incentive for a Creative Workforce

    I stumbled across a fantastic video on the web today, that very creatively presents a new paradigm to motivate and incentivize your team – particularly creative types like those serving the architecture and engineering industry. Here’s the 10-minute video – it’s worth watching to the last second (and very cleverly presented – especially to visually minded people).

    For those who don’t take the time to watch it – the presentation shows research focusing in on human behavior, and how incentives work to create better performance. The shocking revelation is that money doesn’t work as a primary motivator for creative professionals. While a fair and compensatory paycheck is required to maintain an employee’s good will, better performance comes not from higher pay, but from three key areas:

    • Autonomy
    • Mastery
    • Purpose

    This corroborates research by PSMJ that people leave their jobs most often because their:

    • Talents are not seen
    • Contributions are not appreciated
    • Growth is not supported

    Feedback is a powerful driver to attack each of these six items head-on, and build tremendous value in the relationships between your firm and your staff.

    Client Feedback enables everyone in the organization to collect feedback from the people around them. Clients can be internal or external. They can be the consumer of your service, or a provider of a service to you. Whatever your professional interactions are, maximizing each relationship’s performance promotes a sense of well-being and belonging that an employee will be reluctant to leave.

    We’ve found most feedback (about 96%) is positive. This kind of reinforcement feels great!  People regularly receiving feedback feel appreciated and valued over and over again. All of a sudden, they know where their talents are, and can proudly share their successes.  Additionally, their managers have access to a library of great accolades from which to publicly acknowledge and reward employees. The rewards don’t have to be financial – the recognition and appreciation alone for a job well done creates a sense of purpose and mastery.

    Of course, while 96% of feedback is positive, 4% highlights challenges. And here’s where your creative people can really shine. Given tools to uncover where problems lie, and access to the information so your staff can create solutions on their own, grants a great sense of autonomy and self-determination that is very satisfying. Your staff aren’t just great technical minds – they are great people – and they have ideas about how to solve people problems along with the technical issues of the projects they work on.

    Given a good set of tools to track “client” perceptions, and to measure how your team performs relative to expectations, you can create an environment that is decidedly flexible, supportive, creative, rewarding, masterful and filled with purpose. Feedback enables your entire staff – from the receptionist to the corner offices – to be a part of something bigger; a contributor to a community in ways that are meaningful, fulfilling, and rewarding.

    Incorporating feedback into your organization may prove to be a better incentive than simple dollars and cents.  Explore our Client Feedback Tool to learn how we can help.