“We all need people who give us feedback. That’s how we improve.” – Bill Gates

Whether you’re creating a live, virtual, or hybrid experience, feedback is critical. Listening is an art, one that often gets lost in our modern world of way-too-much communication. (There’s a reason we have two ears, but only one mouth.) Let’s take a quick look at how you can get real, actionable feedback from your participants.

Top 3 Tips for Collecting Feedback

  1. Ask the most important questions first. Some may only answer the first few, so be sure questions regarding the “overall rating” and the “intent to recommend to others” come first.
  2. Limit open-ended questions.
  3. Keep it short, 5-10 questions max.

Top 6 Questions You Should Ask at the Conclusion of Every Event

  1. “Overall, I felt this was a (great / very engaging / exciting / motivational / inspirational) event.”
    • Stay away from the word “satisfied.” It won’t tell you much. (Tenured professors are satisfied, but that doesn’t mean they are engaged.) Provide an optional box for participants to provide further details as to why they gave that rating.
    • If you know the primary emotion you are trying to evoke, this is a great place to insert it.
    • Knowing the primary emotion you would like the event to evoke is a key guide for your experience design.
  2. “How likely are you to recommend this event to your colleagues?” or “How likely are you to (sell more / purchase more / take intended action) after attending this event?”
    • If your organization believes in Net Promoter Scores, this question works to establish relevance.
    • If you know the BEHAVIOR you are trying to drive with the event (sell more / purchase more / take intended action), incorporating it is a great evaluation tool.
    • Understanding the primary behavior change you are trying to influence is a key guide for your experience design.
  3. “What was your primary goal for attending this event?”
    • Make a list and be sure to include “other.”
    • We know why WE want to run events, but why do attendees want to be there?
    • Understanding if our assumptions are correct is important, as is looking for patterns in their responses. Additionally, this response gives us great insight to see if (a) attendee goals are shifting, and (b) how well we did meeting their goals by learning if they liked/disliked the event based on their reason(s) for attending.
  4. “Which event elements did you like the most? Choose 3 (include an “other” box).”
  5. “Which event elements did you like the least? Choose 3 (again, include an “other” box).”
    • Unless you need to give sponsors or speakers rating information by each element, it’s best to avoid that level of detail.
    • When planning for the next event, it’s important to know what worked, and what didn’t. EVERYTHING should be up for discussion as you begin to design the next experience.
  6. “We would love your help creating our next event: What can we do to improve the experience?”
    • Yes, this is contrary to what we mentioned back at the start, but it’s the only open-ended question you need. Humans are, by nature, natural helpers, builders, and improvers – we love sharing our opinions!
    • As experience designers, we want to know what we need to change or adjust moving forward. As Bill Gates said, “That’s how we improve.”

Let’s Work Together to Use Feedback to Improve Your Next Event!