It’s definitely a question that comes up — sometimes in the form of a concern, sometimes as a suggestion, and sometimes even as a compliment.

Most of the time, people tell you who they are. Sometimes they don’t. What to do?

In general, allowing this opportunity for community members to share anonymous feedback can be a valuable opportunity. Offering this avenue lets the community know that you’re open to all kinds of feedback and allows you to collect opinions and information you might not have received otherwise.

Setting Expectations

  • In the platform itself and through all communications, customize your language to make it clear that all feedback is welcome, but only messages including contact information will receive direct follow-up.
  • Landing page welcome messages and interest area introductions remind people of their options before they submit.
  • After submitting, onscreen thank-you messages remind those who submit anonymously that they won’t be receiving direct responses.

Dealing with Anonymous Dialogues

  • Although an anonymous Dialogue doesn’t offer an opportunity to respond directly to the Customer, remember that there may be a legitimate reason that this message was sent to your attention.
  • If it’s not a legitimate message, close the Dialogue and move on.
  • If the message requires some follow-up, re-assign it as usual, letting the right district staff members know about the feedback. Add tags, provide internal comments, and note actions taken to track any follow-up work completed.
  • Again: No response is required, but anonymous Dialogues must still be closed!

Beyond the platform, follow-up on issues or questions raised through anonymous Dialogues can be shared out through public communications. For example, district newsletters, online FAQs, and other resources can carry updates on the steps the district has taken to deal with reported issues.

Show you’re listening, even to those with no names. Maybe next time they’ll be ready to be themselves.