Spilling your guts
If you are a member of the Blair County Chamber, today officially begins your opportunity to tell us what a lousy job we’re doing. Lucky you. As part of the Chamber’s Strategic Business Plan we are issuing not one but two surveys to our members. The first is a Membership Satisfaction Survey which identifies programs, events, benefits, common practices and organizational attitudes that the Chamber is already offering and asking if you love them, hate them or are somewhere in-between. The second survey, which will be rolled out in September, puts the onus on the members to identify things that they’d like to see the Chamber doing instead-of or in addition-to what we’re doing now. It can be anything with the exception of replacing dues and sponsorships with beer drinking contests and bus trips to Rocky Gap. But first things first. The Membership Satisfaction Survey is only ten questions and in true Survey Monkey form provides multiple choice options that will either make you confident in your answer or make you wish that the survey was true or false instead. You will be asked to determine the relative merits of golden oldies like Breakfast Club and Business After Hours. That’s just the beginning. Should the Chamber get more or less involved in political advocacy? Do we give too many awards or too few? Are things like sustainability, workplace wellness and data security important enough to commit time and resources to? Should knuckleheads like Joe Hurd be allowed to write newspaper columns on behalf of the organization? We’re hoping that members will take the time to share their thoughts on issues that we too often assume they’re embracing. I had one member tell me that he hadn’t been to a Breakfast Club since the time Bud Shuster talked about “that highway.” He hadn’t come back since he never really liked the eggs at the Ramada. We moved the Breakfast Club to The Casino eighteen years ago. The challenge with surveys, especially as a membership organization, is that many of our members will realize that they don’t really know enough about the Chamber to comment on what is relevant and what is no longer beneficial. As a result, we’re initiating informational programs to encourage them to see what they’ve been missing. Chamber members who haven’t received the first survey by email can access it at www.blairchamber.com
Joe Hurd is President/CEO of the Blair County Chamber of Commerce.