Re: seeking editing feedback

Subject: Re: seeking editing feedback
From: Fred Brown <fred -dot- brown -at- allegrotechindexing -dot- com>
To: techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com
Date: Thu, 27 Jul 2000 10:18:57 -0400

Irene, in my past experience doing market research, every questionnaire takes considerable planning and effort.

First off, one needs to define what problem one is trying solve or what decision one is making. Secondly, one defines what information is required and where this information can be obtained. Often, only a portion of this information needs to be gathered by a questionnaire.

Generally speaking, if people are concerned about your issue, you will get a positive response. Typically, telephone surveys get the highest response rate -- but be ready for an earful if your respondents have any concerns. If you're worried about confidentiality, you may find it helpful to engage an independent consultant. A consultant can also assist you to interpret the results.

You might also find that a focus group with authors will give you many valuable insights as well.

Once you do a survey, you raise expectations. So be sure to deliver on improvements afterwards.

Useful sites with information on survey design and running focus groups:
"Survey Design"
Outlines the steps involved in developing an effective survey.
"10 Tips for Running Successful Focus Groups"
Words of wisdom from an experienced practitioner.
"The Use and Misuse of Focus Groups"
Well-considered advice and cautions on using focus groups.

Fred Brown

At 09:39 PM 07/27/2000 +1000, you wrote:

Editors and authors

As an editor have you ever thought of following up every editing project
with a questionnaire asking the author about what they felt about the
editing process and outcome?

Are there any traps in doing this? (eg you may not get honest answers as
with an anonymous survey)

Are there some questions one just must ask? (obviously one only asks
questions the answers to which you can react to as feedback, what else to

Are there any questions one should avoid?

As an author what would you think of this?

Irene Won

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