What was your “Total Impress”?

Jared Spool

January 3rd, 2010

Customer service rating card from hotel in China

While attending the User Friendly Conference in Shanghai, China this year, we stayed at the Hau Ting Hotel. During one of the meals there, they handed us this card to rate their service.

Now, the translation issues of Chinglish aside, this card points out problems common with measuring satisfaction.

The first has to do with the polarity. Is a 5 good or bad? If one person rates something with a 5 and the next person rates it with a 1, can you really say they have opposite opinions? Or did they just read the scale differently?

The second has to do with scale. What is the difference between a 5 and a 4 (or a 1 and a 2)? Is there meaning there? Or, as is common, does the individual rate something a 4 because they believe they “never give out 5s”? (Many seasoned statisticians will compensate by always grouping the 4s and 5s together in their reporting, which, for satisfaction is probably the right thing to do.)

The third has to do with rating terms. I have no idea what they mean by “Nattiness”. But, even under the food category, there is “Portion”, which I think I understand—until I go to rate it. Do I rate a 5 is I’m happy with the portion size? Or if I think the portion size was large? Since it was a buffet, is it the size of the portion set out? Or the amount of food I put on my plate?

And finally, the fourth has to do with followup actions. If 80% of the respondents rated “Portion” with a 3, what would the restaurant do differently?

We want to know if our customers and users are satisfied with our efforts. And, if they aren’t, we need to know what to change. Creating an instrument to give us meaningful and actionable feedback is really difficult.

I’m working on a new presentation on measuring customer satisfaction. I’m calling it: Go Ahead! Make My Day! (Dana Chisnell suggested the subtitle should be “Feeling Lucky, Punk?”) Stay tuned…

2 Responses to “What was your “Total Impress”?”

  1. Usability. | le-matt. Says:

    […] What was your “Total Impress”? […]

  2. Llewellyn Falco Says:

    I’ve often given surveys with my talks. At first it was good just to get feedback, but always the most helpful section was “comments”.

    Few people ever wrote here, and a lot of the writing was not helpful. stuff like “great” which feels good, but isn’t actionable.

    then one day i felt i needed to prune a talk, but where? I asked “what did you like most?” “what did you like least?” and an odd thing happened. I didn’t get very useful results out of those questions either, but all of a sudden there was a lot more frequent and useful stuff showing up in the comments section.

    I’m not exactly sure why that opens the tap for comments, but I think that your 4th point is the most important.

    paperwork sucks, don’t do it if there isn’t something you can do WITH it.

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