As many of you know, I’m a huge proponent of the communication style of Why, then How, then What. Because of this, I’ve come across a lot of opinionated information – asking people why they may want or do something, how they do it, and then what it is they actually do.
Not long ago I sent a survey out to my co-workers asking them why we do a few things as an organization to start a mission statement for the group I was tasked with forming. This brought back a bunch of results with no, absolutely none, data to work with. For a couple years now, as well, I’ve been collecting surveys from our training clients (with a few questions to be hand-written) to see how we might better serve them and improve in our quality. It’s great having that information, but can we really interpret these opinions into actionable paths for improvement? Maybe. If there are a few.
So, I started researching and finally built a tool (in Excel) to turn opinions into measurable results; in more technical terms – qualitative results into quantifiable data.
This is a valuable tool for anyone that wants to rightly know what clients, employees, friends, groups, or even one’s self, are thinking, want, need….
Simply, send out a survey:
- In a class
- On Facebook
- As an email
- Using MailChimp
- A pros and cons list
Use the results with this method, and you’ll have the DATA you want to make the decisions you see best.
This tool was built in Excel, however, the concept can be used in any logic program I believe.
Below I describe the process:
- Get your survey responses
- Enter them into a data bank (some electronic tool or list that can sort and assign)
- Create overarching categories that describe all the variables in the responses
- Assign the categories a code
- Go through all of the responses and assign them a category code
- Sum the results of each category
Hopefully, this brings some enrichment to your life. I know it is to me. If you have any feedback, comments, questions, etc I’d be really happy to hear from you.
Thanks for reading,