A community of technology community managers, leaders, and builders.

How to survey your community


#1

I am getting a survey together that aims to create more visibility surrounding our community and ongoing community issues and related to that how community management can contribute to solving these issues and support the community. The survey should visualise opportunities brought on by community members to manage the community in the best way possible and to understand people and their motivations in our community better. The provided input should take community management to the next level.

I am struggling with how to ask the questions and how to deal with it’s outcome. A number of questions are quite obvious like ‘how satisfied are you with product x’, ‘when did you get first involved’, ‘how much time do you spend on average for your community work’.

I am aware however that not everyone in the community even knows there is a community manager. In day to day work it is usually the interaction with the teams or the board that takes most time.

I am guessing that if you do such a survey that you explain community management first. I came up with some questions like:

  • On average how helpful do you think community management is?
  • On average how supportive to the teams do you think community management is?
  • On average how beneficial do you think community management is in general?
  • what should be the main task of community management?
  • Did you contribute to the community? If so, how easy was it to contribute and what hurdles did you encounter?
  • On average how frustrated do you feel to get through to someone that could get things done?

I also think it is difficult to come up with these questions in the light of what you should do with the results. So asking the right questions is very important. A survey should also be done on a yearly basis to be able to compare things.

To me this seems like a good topic for the knowledge base and I am sure there are many community managers out there that could benefit from some generic guidelines or even some cut and paste stuff for you survey.

Does anyone have experience with such surveys and is able to contribute?


#2

I have administered surveys for political work and have picked up a few things. Giving people a range eg. from 1-5 helps you avoid language that lets your bias (like how you might feel about their answer) out of the survey.

It’s also great to give people a section where they can put what they think you should’ve asked. Also a survey should be administered to a small-ish group first if possible and then tweaked if you notice that people are either frustrated with the format or breadth fo the questions or are having trouble answering a question you thought was straightforward.


#3

Heyla Deb,

Great to meet here :wink: and thanks for the feedback. Sending it out to a small-ish group is a very good idea. I already picked this up from the Jono’s book. I would send it to community members that are around for a longer time already. That would give the advantage of adapting the survey according to their input, but this will also give a more specific view from these people.

I will definitely share the survey once it is complete here.


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