Reverse engineer the process
Every company will have a very unique set of questions tailored to their business aims and objectives. To determine what questions you should ask, first think about what data you want the survey to provide. Secondly think about who the data is being gathered for. What will make the board sit up and take note?
If you survey is to help you measure the impact of an initiative then you may be the person most interested in the results, but think carefully about surveys designed to be reported back on at board level. Think about your boardroom discussions and identify some core areas of focus to help draw up your question set. What is going to grab the attention of senior leaders and make them take action?
Think about the strategic objectives of the business and what questions will help drive those decisions forward. Be sure to split up complex areas into smaller more manageable, granular sections.
Strategic vs. tactical questions
Strategic questions are monitored on an ongoing basis and look to identify trends over a period of time. Tactical questions are ad hoc and tend to be driven by a specific event or action. Think carefully about what questions will provide a snap shot and which are ones for ongoing measurement.
As a client of The Happiness index you can leverage our question base or we’ll help you work on your questions sets to ensure you get the most from the data and insights we provide.
Keep it simple and concise
Just ask the critical questions. Keep clear goals in mind when devising your question set and only ask what questions you need answers to. Also consider what it is realistic you can change, if you can’t change it then is it worth asking about it?
The longer the survey, the less likely people are to complete it so strip out any unnecessary or ‘might be useful one day’ questions that are distracting respondents from the important topics.
Keep language simple and concise, and try to avoid industry or local jargon if your audience is broader. Be specific in your questions and avoid vague questions that may lead to vastly diverse/differing interpretation. Check your questions over after you draft them and ask yourself the following questions:
- Will they provide me the data I need?
- Am I being clear?
- Do any of the questions lead the respondent?
- Has anything in the intro or the questions been biased?
- Am I asking more than one question in one?
- Could any of these questions be considered vague or too broad?
- What am I expecting the outcome / results to look like from this question?
Before you launch your pulse survey – get someone to sanity check and proof your questions. What made sense to you may not necessarily make sense out of context to another person so always ask someone to check them with a fresh pair of eyes.