Sunday, September 27, 2015

I Need Your Help to Understand How We Communicate

Good morning.
"And the beat goes on…………….."

I need your help.

Please click on this link and take a very short and important survey:   

For some time I have been interested in the Nonprofit Arts field's Communications - our habits, preferences, perceptions and behaviors.

  • How do we communicate with each other?  
  • How do we communicate within our organizations, and from our organizations to others in our field?  As arts administrators.  
  • What are our preferred methods and platforms?  
  • Is there any differentiation in the communications tools individual organizations or administrators in our field use, based on geography, or discipline, or budget size. or generations or otherwise?   
  • How do others in our field communicate with us?  
  • Which sources of information do we trust?  
  • How much time do we spend on various forms of communication?
  • Do we read all the stuff sent to us?  
  • What has been the impact of so much more information flowing from us and to us on everything from our productivity to our level of job satisfaction?  
  • How are we managing all the information today?

Communication -- internally within our organizations, externally within our field, and from us to specific sectors and to the public -- is the lifeblood of virtually everything we do.

Yet we have almost no information on how we use it, manage it, cope with it and perceive it.

I am conducting a preliminary study for the Knight and Hewlett Foundations and for Westaf as the sponsors.  It seeks to begin to compile data on our communications habits, behaviors and preferences --on which further inquiry and analysis can be built as we try to understand more about how we communicate -- so that ultimately, we might be better at it. The principal tool in this study is an online survey that seeks this baseline of information.

Here is a link to the survey:   

And that is where I need your help.  The core of the list of those who will receive an email invitation to take this simple, brief online survey - will be the Knight and Hewlett grantees and the Westaf constituent list.

But in order to have a representative sampling pool, I very much want to make sure that all our various communities are included in the invitation.  And that includes organizations in the opera, symphony, music, visual art, museum, native arts, crafts, theater, dance, film and other areas of our field, as well as city and state agencies, advocacy groups, arts education organizations, university programs --- and including large and small organizations, the full range of diverse multicultural groups and from every geographical area of the country.  In short, we have a big field and I need to include responders from every quarter of that field.

I've asked a number of national service provider organizations if they would help me by forwarding an invitation to take the survey to their lists - or in the alternative to promote the survey to their lists via their newsletter or social platforms. Many have agreed to help me.  I don't want any group in our sector to be under represented.

So, I need your help.  I need you to take the survey yourself, encourage others in your organization to take the survey, and pass on the link to your clients, constituents, grantees etc.

This survey is comprised of check off questions only, with no narrative responses required or asked for, and is designed to take no more than 15 to 20 minutes to complete.

I wish I could pay everyone to take the survey.  I know your time is valuable.  But I can't.  We are offering two random drawings for all those who complete the survey and want to be in the drawing - awarding an Apple Watch to the selected individual, and a $500 cash award to the organization selected.

But the real reason to help me is to have this survey yield some information that will begin to help all of us understand better how we are communicating.  A final report will be widely disseminated based on the results of the survey.  I am hopeful this will be information that will be helpful to you and your organization, and provide a baseline on which further research can be built.

So, please help me.  Click on this link:                        today and complete the survey.

Again, the survey is comprised of check off questions only - with no narrative responses required or asked for, and designed to take less than 20 minutes to complete.  

And please, take the time to pass on this request.

The survey will be open from September 28th to October 16th only.

I very much appreciate your help.

Have a great week.

Don't Quit.