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Exit Interview Questionnaire

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  • Exit Interview Questionnaire

    Hello everyone,
    I’ve asked for the following agenda item to be added to the next regular meeting,
    “Develop an exit interview questionnaire to send to past secretaries in an attempt to learn how the Town of Poetry can improve the position of secretary.”

    I would like to start the conversation on our open forum in an attempt reduce the public meeting time but allow time to fully discuss it.

    I will be glad to take the thoughts and questions in this forum and develop an Exit Interview Questionnaire to distribute to our previous Town Secretaries.

  • #2
    Here are a few questions that I think would be pertinent to the questionnaire.

    1. Was there any specific reasons for your resignation?

    2. What was your expectations of the position? Was it advertised fairly and accurately?

    3. Did you have access our financial software? Quick books, excel, bank records etc.
    If so, did you see any areas for improvement ?

    4. In your short term as Town Secretary did you see any areas we can approve as a Town?​

    5. Did we provide you the tools and equipment necessary to
    complete your job to the best of your ability?


    • #3
      Probably worth asking, but I can say as a matter of habit I don't answer exit questionnaires - or if I do, I make the answers very generic. I tend to try and not rock the boat on my way out the door.


      • #4
        Thanks for the open discussion. I guess there’s always a chance that they won’t be answered but this is not an attempt to rock the boat. As a young Town we should be learning from every opportunity we can and I believe this is a great way to learn if the past secretaries will participate. I don’t expect council to hit a home run with every decision we make but I do expect improvements along the way.


        • #5
          Especially in a situation where someone quits or resigns unexpectedly, I think it's worthwhile to understand what happened and what if anything we might do to improve. I don't think there's any harm in trying it and then making adjustments as necessary.

          I support the idea.


          • #6
            I'm also in favor of the idea. But to Brian’s point, we should expect very generic answers unless we can get them to let down their guard a bit.

            Personally I would recommend that we don’t do the exit interviews in public. I doubt that anyone will want to call out an employer on camera when they know future employers will probably view that in a negative light. And besides, I think we should treat this like any other “employee review”, which is done exclusively executive session if memory serves.

            I will also note that I’ve been advised not to require a written reason. Even in a corporation these written documents are often kept as permanent record and people tend to clam up about problems in those reports.

            Something nonformal in executive session I’d imagine would have the best results.


            • #7
              I do not want this to be a public display either. I do prefer a written exit interview. This is all in good faith that we can learn from those whom have been employed by the Town in an effort to become a better Town.


              • #8
                Another consideration would be to select 2 council members each time to meet with the person informally to gather feedback....


                • #9
                  Here are the Exit Interview questions we agreed on last night:

                  1. Were there any specific reasons for your resignation?
                  2. What was your expectations for the position? Was it advertised fairly and accurately?
                  3. Did you have to our financial software? QuickBooks, excel, bank records, etc. If so, did you see any areas for improvement?
                  4. Did you see any areas we could improve in as a town?
                  5. Did we provide you the tools and equipment necessary to complete your job to the best of your ability?
                  6. What did you like best and least about the job?
                  7. How did you feel about the management in the town?
                  8. Is there anything else you’d like to add?


                  • Mike Jaffe
                    Mike Jaffe commented
                    Editing a comment
                    Thanks for posting this Simeon. I encourage us to interact here so that we can develop a "finished" version in advance of this being on an agenda for a vote.

                • #10
                  We voted last night to send out these questions. I would think the next steps would be to put it in a word format and mail them.


                  • #11
                    You are correct Terry. Thanks for setting me straight. We did vote to proceed on this one. I appreciate your watchful eye.


                    • #12
                      Remember that exit interview answers would only be handled in an executive session as it pertains to confidential information. We need to respect their right to privacy.


                      • #13
                        I plan on mailing them this week with a self addressed envelope. If they respond without their return address they will retain their privacy and could be reviewed in public.


                        • #14
                          So this task should be handled by the current secretary and not an individual Council member.


                          • Tara Senkevech
                            Tara Senkevech commented
                            Editing a comment
                            The council voted in this list of questions, but did not authorize any one council member to perform this act. It should therefore be on official letterhead with seal to ensure that it is handled properly just like election information which is very delicate. It could be sent to the current attorney's email address or city secretary's email or home address if preferred, but the current city secretary should be the one who handles these.

                        • #15
                          I’ve already reached out to the past secretary’s and retained all their mailinfo addresses. Does any other council have a problem with me sending the questions to them? Jana has a lot on her plate and this is an easy task to complete that doesn’t cost the Town a single dime.