Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Feedback – why, when and how?

I recently published a blog based around an inappropriate text message that my dentist had sent me. I said in the blog that I wouldn’t be letting the dental surgery know that I wasn’t happy with the text. Many thanks to all the people who wrote to me regarding this blog (and for the various dental referrals I received!), but there was one lady who seemed pretty upset with me for not taking my complaint to the dental surgery. She said something to the effect of why vent in a blog when you could go and get the situation resolved.

There are many reasons I blogged about this instead of going to the dental surgery directly, the first being that it’s my personal preference not to provide feedback when I’m not asked.

You give me a feedback form or a questionnaire and I’m usually the first to fill it in. I LOVE to provide feedback (both positive and constructive) and I adore writing testimonials when I’ve been provided with a sensational experience.

BUT – I no longer provide constructive criticism to a business unless I’m asked for it, or unless I’m actually making a complaint about service. Why? Well, I used to give constructive feedback for many years and was increasingly disappointed to see my feedback not implemented.

I’ve now come to the conclusion that businesses that want feedback and want to implement it will usually ask for it. I do so in my own businesses, which is why, as an example, any of you that have trialled, had a property managed through or have purchased one of our books at will have received a request for you to complete a questionnaire based on the experience.

Also – I’m kind of a nut. If I gave feedback to every business I saw that could be improved, it’d be all I’d do with my life and my friends would refuse to ever go to another restaurant, bar, spa with me again!

So my questions to you today are: Do you want feedback on your business? If so – how are you giving your clients an opportunity to provide this?

Also, whenever I make mention of a business that’s done something I don’t love in a blog. It’s not to vent. It’s not in the hope that someone will read that blog who works at that business and will change their wicked wicked ways. And you’ll rarely see me list their name (unlike when I see a business that’s doing something positive).

I write because thousands of people might read the blog and if one business is doing something in a certain way you can guarantee they aren’t alone. I write in the hope that there’s a reader out there who sees the article and checks the text messages their business sends out, or puts a new feedback system in place etc and that something positive comes from that article.

Now, don’t even get me started about the hotel I just stayed in… ok, that one might be more of a vent! I’ll save it until I’ve found a lesson that I need to learn from that experience!

And as always, if there’s ever any feedback you want to give us about our newsletter, blogs or books, what you enjoy or don’t enjoy, please head to and write away. While I can’t guarantee we’ll implement everything, we do read it all and take your feedback on board.

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By Kirsty Dunphey with No comments


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