The first phase of GuideStar's
relationship improvement process involves both qualitative
and quantitative research to establish a baseline
measurement of the critical dimensions, the key drivers,
in the relationship.
Specially structured, one-on-one
interviews (in-person or by telephone) with representatives
of each segment of the population in the relationship
you seek to improve are conducted by GuideStar consultants
to develop a preliminary relationship profile.
Using GuideStar's Relationship
Profile Analysis instrument as a guide to conduct
the interviews, our consultants gather the essential
information needed to develop a preliminary relationship
profile, which includes position definition, relationship
strengths and weaknesses, collaboration and interpersonal
communication scores, aspiration levels, opportunities
for improvement and other critical dimensions of the
Following the interviews, we examine
the relationship profile findings to determine the
essential areas for further exploration and inclusion
in a baseline quantitative survey. The purpose of
the survey is to accurately establish the overall
baseline levels of each important dimension in the
relationship profile so improvement levels (hopefully)
can be periodically measured and tracked.
Working collaboratively with
you, a team of GuideStar consultants will craft a
survey questionnaire to measure all the important
dimensions of the relationship with a representative
sample of the population; customers, employees, network
GuideStar's relationship surveys
are designed to go beyond traditional satisfaction
and loyalty measures and indices. The goal is to define
the critical drivers and dimensions in the relationship
which, when improved, can be predicted to have a positive
influence on business outcomes.
Survey questionnaires include
GuideStar's signature relationship question sets,
which reveal the relationship's profile and provide
our analysts with the information needed to define
and predict the key relationship and business outcome
drivers and dimensions. Among
the relationship dimensions measured are interdependence,
closeness and collaboration, impact, bonding, sharing
of risk, caring about mutual success, authenticity,
keeping commitments, bridging and interpersonal communications.
Working with the SMMS,
the GuideStar team carefully manages the survey's
data collection process to maximize response rates
and sample sizes for data analysis.
GuideStar's unique Online
Report Center (ORC) system provides secure, real-time,
online reporting facilities for accessing and analyzing
survey results and creating great looking reports.
With the ORC, you can easily "slice and dice"
their data, drill down into the data and design reports
in a variety of graphic formats.
While you work with your survey
data in the ORC, GuideStar analysts examine it more
deeply, conducting a variety of analyses, some of
which have been expressly developed by GuideStar.
They reveal the deeper relationship connections in
the response data and how those connections define
and influence the quality of the relationship and
the client's business outcomes.
Relationship indices, as well
as standardized satisfaction and loyalty indices,
are developed to establish a baseline for tracking
on future surveys. Target Goal Ranges for Performance
Excellence are established based on overall and industry
GuideStar professionals then prepare
written summary findings reports with specific tactical
and strategic recommendations to provide guidance
to you for taking actions that will improve the quality
of your relationship with the survey population -
customers, employees, network partners, suppliers,
Following the presentation
of the baseline research findings and recommendations,
GuideStar consultants engage leaders and teams within
your organization to assist with communicating the
research findings within the organization, in planning
both short-term actions and longer term strategic
initiatives aimed at improving the productivity and
health of a primary business relationship.
Recognizing that your relationships
with your most important groups took years to develop
to their current state, it will take time and investment
to strengthen and/or repair those relationships. Our
approach is to establish, early on, a collaborative
partnership relationship with our client. We agree
to mutually commit resources to work together collaboratively
over a period of several years to improve your relationships
with the people who matter most to your business success.
Though GuideStar's role as a trusted
advisor to each client is earned over time, by establishing
a strategic partnership early on with our clients,
we are able to dedicate high-level consultants to
the initial discovery phase and to develop strategic
research plans to begin improving our client's business
results as quickly as possible.
Relationships are not changed
overnight. It is a process of mutual investment, building
trust, earning respect, planning collaboratively and
sharing common goals and achievements. Measuring the
improvement of a relationship overall and its key
dimensions is best accomplished periodically so trends
can be identified and appropriate responses developed.
The goal is to create a trajectory
of relationship improvement over time on all the important
dimensions in a relationship that result in improved
business outcomes and organizational performance.
That is why a single survey may have a dramatic
impact at a point in time, but does not usually provide
the strategic information necessary to build a healthy,
sustainable, productive relationship.
Often, a client's relationship
with GuideStar will begin with a single survey assignment.
And, more often than not, after the first survey project,
as the client better understands and appreciates the
value of a longer-term effort designed to elevate
their relationships with groups that have the greatest
impact on their business success, the relationship
with GuideStar progresses to a more strategic level.
Move on to Phase
II - Drivers, Dimensions and Strategies.