Know Your Industry

Last month we reviewed the importance of knowing your members and shared 5 steps in setting up a member survey. But your research doesn’t stop there. In the second stage to improve the performance of the chapter, association leaders should also survey the industry or field of work.

Just like with knowing your members, learning about the industry isn’t really a tough task. For the second stage, implement an industry-designed research efforts to focus on industry practices and trends.

The 5 steps to learn all about your industry:  

  1. Set-up the objective of your research. What do you want to learn from this survey? Do you need to uncover trends? Best practices? Setting up the right objective will help you determine the questions and later will make it easier to analyze the data.
  2. Determine the scope. The nature of your chapter will determine the scope of research. If you are a part of a national association, you might want to consider to review the industry in the national realm, but often times, the local perspective will draw more of members in. Skipping this step will make you work harder for no reason, collecting useless information.
  3. Build the right questions. Based on your objectives and scope, create questions that will guide your members through. Unlike with member-based survey, industry survey focuses less on practices and more on overall performance. Gear your questions to that direction as well. 
  4. Use a survey tool to collect the data. Figure out how to best engage your members and non-members to collect answers. There are many tools you can use to set up your survey, through the website or as an email, so tailor the platform to your target responders. Using your StarChapter software, set up the Survey Manager that helps you sending and calculating the percentages of certain responses. All surveys are accessible through the built-in surveys page. This walkthrough video tutorials and tips article will help you learn more about how to set up these surveys  
  5. Analyze, Decide and Share Results. Using the Survey Manager and the percentage calculator, board leaders can easily present responses and learn about changing trends. You can also export the results of all the survey submissions and filter based on Individual survey responses. At the end, your conclusions are important to your members and non-members. Use emails, the chapter’s website and your next event to distribute results and get feedback.


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