Customer Survey – How Are We Doing?
LifePaths is sending out an online survey to past and current clients to get a feel for how well we are serving the people who come to us for help. Counseling is very private and personal though – so we had to be careful about a few important things first!
We wanted to be certain that asking for information from clients allowed for:
– absolutely NO feeling of obligation to do the survey
– and, it needed to be as quick and easy as possible
We took all the measures we could to protect the privacy of people responding. Everyone receives the same link for their counselor, and no IP addresses are tracked. Specific comments and individual results are only seen by the counselor and LifePaths’ Director and no one else.
I think a lot of counselors will ask clients (when it feels necessary): “How am I doing? Are we working on the things you want to work on? Are we making progress? Do we need to shift our focus at all?” For everyone involved in the therapy, the feedback you get from these questions helps to keep you focused on the goals. It may get therapy back on track, too.
Some counselors will also use a written form for feedback periodically. There are a few forms out there that have been used in research to study the effectiveness of counseling and counselors may use those, and some counselors may create their own form as well.
But what if you, as the client, aren’t quite comfortable telling your counselor directly that something isn’t going well? The counselors at LifePaths strive to check in periodically on how well counseling is going, but we wanted to add this anonymous way of giving us feedback, too.
I feel compelled to add this: if you are in therapy and something is not going quite right, please let your therapist know. The best way to address problems is directly. I believe that most therapists/counselors would be happy to get this kind of feedback – I know for sure that I appreciate this so much!! I would so much rather hear how things could change for the better, for you, rather than have you keep quiet about it for any reason at all. Oh, this could be a whole blog post all by itself!
This was also an important thing for us to consider. The relationship with your counselor is a very personal one; we wondered if our clients would feel some level of obligation to do the survey because of that. And we didn’t want that to be the case at all. So we’ve emphasized that this is completely voluntary. Multiple times. Really and no kidding – you are not obligated at ALL.
Quick and Easy
We definitely did NOT want to be a pain for anyone, so we made the questions as short and concise as possible and kept it to the most important information we were hoping to learn. There is a lot of space to elaborate if a person chooses, but this isn’t required at all. You probably could complete it all in five minutes if you wanted, or take much longer if you want to put in a lot of detail.
We appreciate and welcome any feedback – we want to do the best job we can for our clients. If you are or were a client and want to fill out a survey, and you haven’t heard from us yet, please get in touch with your counselor or with Cathy at firstname.lastname@example.org to get a link.
Any thoughts on how you would feel about being asked to fill out a survey like this for a counselor? Or thoughts on what it would be most important to learn about how counseling is going?
Image credit courtesy of tiramisustudio and freedigitalphotos.net