A Groupon offer nudged us into having our ductwork cleaned. After all, we’ve lived in the house 10 years, own two very sheddy pets and don’t dust nearly as much as my mother-in-law thinks we should. Ignoring the data the Environmental Protection Agency puts out saying that the results are more anecdotal than concrete, we took the plunge.
Yesterday, a pair of Sears technicians came to the house around 12:30, a perfectly acceptable time within the “noon to 3″ window we were promised. They did their job professionally for the most part, although I was a little uncomfortable that one decided to use our upstairs master bathroom without asking (we have a guest bath on the first floor). My husband maintains the tech probably did not ask because our office door was closed and he didn’t want to disturb us further.
This morning, Sears sent an email survey. I have always been partial to this retailer, despite all its bumblings over the years, because I was a Sears Associate from age 17 to 21. In the late 1980s, at least, it had been a great employer for a teenager who liked to spend her days at the mall anyway.
But I have to say I was amused by the way the survey was presented. It had all the standard questions — “Did the technicians conduct themselves professionally,” etc. — but rather than having me choose a response to each question, all the responses were defaulted to “extremely satisfied.” I only had to click a button if I was anything less than amazed, evidently.
I can’t decide whether I like this approach. On one hand, I was giving mostly fives (“extremely satisfied”) anyway, so it was kind of nice to scan the question and know I literally didn’t have to lift a finger. On the other hand (no pun intended), it means that had I missed a question, Sears would still take it as a win — “Ah, she hates us on every level but question No. 6, in which she was extremely satisfied!” In the end, I left the majority of responses as they were and dropped a couple down to fours as I deemed appropriate.
Still, it got me to thinking. I have created my fair share of online surveys for clients over the years, and was unaware that providing a default response was even an option. Maybe I’d better brush up on technique there. Or maybe it’s a shade of gray in ethics that I shouldn’t go near.
Now it’s your turn: In your business surveys, do you have a default response on? Or do you think that brings in some murky ethics? Sound off below or drop me a line at heather at goochandgooch.com.