Quality data. Better decisions and faster results. These phrases are like beautiful music to our monkey ears and we’re thankful that we get to help our customers make more informed decisions for whatever their survey needs may be. Indianapolis-based author, Dr. Erin Albert, a busy lady who wears many hats–entrepreneur, assistant professor, writer, law school student–is here to share how SurveyMonkey has become an invaluable and time-saving research tool for her in the writing of her books. Welcome, Erin!
As a part-time entrepreneur, full-time academic and writer, I’m a little busy. Time is my best friend, but also my biggest enemy. However, finding time to research and write is still imperative.
A well-written and researched book requires hours of work, hundreds of connections, and several interviews to gather data. I don’t have the luxury of hopping on a plane and heading to Silicon Valley or New York for a few months to track down people for my projects, either. Tools like SurveyMonkey are essential in my writing, and assist in speeding up my book writing process.
For example, in my book about Single. Women. Entrepreneurs, (SWE),my research was two-fold: first, I had to get into the minds of other single women entrepreneurs—what drove them to start? Second, I had to find more in-depth information on specific women entrepreneurs willing to be interviewed, but I had to find them all over the country.
Couple that with a full-time work schedule as an assistant professor, keeping two businesses growing, and working through law school part-time in the evenings, it was next to impossible to juggle everything including the time necessary for a new book.
Utilizing SurveyMonkey as a tool to research and provide new data and leads on new tribes I’m studying has proved immensely valuable. When the demand to connect was imperative, the fastest way to connect and research was by creating a survey through my SurveyMonkey subscription, “Solo Women Entrepreneurs.”
Not only could I ask women questions about their businesses, but I could also find willing participants who were eager to share their stories and businesses in a timely fashion, rather than me just using my own personal network to reach out to other women from across the country. Having a live survey gave me the opportunity to hone my questions more succinctly when I interviewed women for the book later.
Although I didn’t have a lot of quantity in terms of responses with my survey, I definitely had a lot in terms of quality responses. This led to a total of 30 amazing women who are featured in SWE. The time to put the survey in versus the information put out via survey results has maximized my time and resources, and almost allowed me to be in two places at once. I also had the chance to build an audience for the new book within the survey as well—an unexpected bonus!
In fact, using the survey model has been so successful, I’ve created another new survey on a new book project I am beginning to research in 2013: academicians who also have the entrepreneurial bug.
If you are an academic with entrepreneurial endeavors on the side, I invite you to take my new survey below—and who knows? Maybe you’ll end up in my next book!
Dr. Erin Albert is CEO/Founder of Pharm, LLC and Yuspie, LLC, and is the Director of Continuing Education and Preceptor Development at Butler University College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences. Her books are at her writing site, www.erinalbert.com, and the usual book outlets.