useful customer feedback

Subject: useful customer feedback
From: Miki Magyar <MDM0857 -at- MCDATA -dot- COM>
Date: Wed, 20 Nov 1996 13:10:08 -0700

Karen Brown asked, "Anyone had luck in extracting usable feedback
from customers?"

It's very similar to the process by which I get useful feedback from the
SMEs who review my user manuals. First I grab them by the throat... no,
that's *after* the deadline is past... I tell them specifically what I want
them to tell me. If someone hands you a document and asks you to edit or
review it, do you know what they want? I don't. So I give my reviewers
a specific list of things to look for, usually in the form of a checklist, to
minimize the work required. You can do the same for customers or
users, starting with, "Did you use the online help?" Then at the end you
can ask for specifics of what they wanted but couldn't find, what
annoyed them, etc., but leave the open-ended stuff for last. And if they
don't give you the information you need, *then* you grab them by the

"You could live a perfectly normal life, if you were only willing to live a
perfectly normal life!" Q

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