A few comments reflected a common pitfall of survey research. These respondents suggested that they felt obliged to give objective “expert opinion,” rather than input on their own experiences that we were aiming for. Some expressed doubts about their ability to fulfill what they believed we asked of them. We were chided for expecting them to “do our homework for us.”
There were unanticipated benefits of the survey as well. Various members commented that prior to participating in the survey, they had been unaware of some features, such as the membership and consultant directories, the Placement Center, the article search engine, and the ability to purchase articles from HFES. We also appreciated their excellent suggestions, some of which
we incorporated into our follow-up report. Some offered to help; their names were forwarded to the associated work groups.
Reading these responses left an overriding sense that our Society functions as an orchestra. The violins may play to a different tempo than the trumpets, but all together, they create a symphony, and I am grateful to be part of it.
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Rani Lueder is president of Humanics ErgoSystems, Inc. She has
consulted in occupational ergonomics, product design research and (in recent years) Web-based ergonomics training for more than 20 years. She is coediting a book on child ergonomics with Valerie Rice for Taylor & Francis.