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Discussion: OUSA Strategic Planning Committee seeks input

in: Orienteering; General

Aug 21, 2019 5:31 PM # 
For U.S. orienteers (and those who often travel to the U.S. to orienteer), the OUSA Strategic Planning Committee is interested in your feedback about OUSA's future focus.

There's a general survey appropriate for all who orienteer, whether OUSA members or not, and about a dozen special topics for more specific feedback.

The announcement with links to the surveys is here:
Aug 23, 2019 7:30 PM # 
I'm just posting, because I think this is worth some more time at the top of the list.
Aug 24, 2019 1:13 AM # 
Last question about other activities only gives you possible responses of "I belong to a club" and/or "I occasionally pay to participate/compete", but not "I do this activity as cross training." Are you thus only interested in what people are willing to pay to belong to?

Good questionnaire, and I hope you get at least the typical 15-25% survey response rate. :-)
Aug 24, 2019 7:17 PM # 
Done the main one working through subject ones. I really hope people do this because it’s like voting if you don’t speak up don’t complain about the outcome!
Aug 24, 2019 10:08 PM # 
@Alison: How long is it taking you to do the surveys? The main one says 20-30min, but I suspect one can do it faster by keeping responses to open-ended questions short (or skipping some)

Do you think there is much/any value to doing the topical surveys, if the subject is completely irrelevant?
Aug 24, 2019 10:47 PM # 
Thanks, EricW. I guess relying on the Aussies to hijack the thread isn’t a good strategy. (But we hope they’ll come O with us, anyway).

GuyO, I wouldn’t put much time in if the subject isn’t relevant to you. With the specific topic surveys, we’re probably most interested in where importance and passion intersect, because that’s the space where there’s potential to make things happen.

Janet, I think the answer is that we are interested in both responses, for different reasons. At this point, we’re just taking in information, so the more quality feedback you can give us, the more it helps us plan.

Thanks for taking this on, everyone.
Aug 25, 2019 6:49 PM # 
@guyo it took me the 20-30 for the main survey but I think that is because I’ve been away from local USA orienteering for a bit. I think you could do it faster. The subject ones took much less time and I was only going to answer ones I thought I could add value to.
Aug 26, 2019 9:41 AM # 
I have worked my way through the main survey and four of the specific topic ones. I see a lot of the questions are based on a 2010 similar strategic planning job. My impression is that a terrific job was done in 2010. They were right on the mark in so many areas. I don't know what happened but I suspect not enough people/ resources were available to keep 'the feet to the fire'.
Also my experience is that in surveys such as this it is important to survey those interested in a certain area and those not interested. In the municipal field we called it a user/non-user survey. Let's say we get a small group of real keeners saying that a certain branch of orienteering should be a top priority and no one else responds to that specific survey. O-USA may respond by putting a lot of resources in that branch when 99% of the orienteering population could not give a damn about it.
It does take a little time but every responder should make an effort to respond to each area even if it is to say not interested, don't go there.
Finally the surveys - at least the ones I've done so far -have not allowed me to express that while the strategic initiatives are great some of them may be best left to the local level with O-USA playing a facilitator role.
Aug 28, 2019 11:08 PM # 
82 responses to the general survey thus far. I did a quick first read - some great feedback. We will have lots to think about.

For the subject-specific questionnaires:
Budget, Fundraising, Financial Mgt: 4
Communication: 7
Maps & Land Access: 11
Marketing, media, outreach: 8
Membership: 11
Expanding Participation ("Starts" on the survey title): 15
Strategic Planning: 4
Volunteering: 5
Senior Nat’l Team: 11
Junior Nat’l Program: 14
Masters Orienteering: 0
Regaining: 11
Ski-O: 0
Trail-O: 1

If you haven’t had a chance to weigh in yet, please do so! I can’t speak for everyone, but I am finding it helpful to see trends in what’s important as well as ideas of how we could do better.
Aug 29, 2019 12:29 AM # 
Do you know why there are no replies to Masters Orienteering? It's because the link to the survey is not on the page.
Aug 29, 2019 3:17 AM # 
Neither is Ski O. I've asked the committee to send me those two links to add.
Aug 29, 2019 12:08 PM # 
Well, that explains that! Thanks for pointing out my omission. I'll get an updated version out through other channels and remind everyone we're looking for input.

Try this:

Aug 31, 2019 2:37 PM # 
Pink Socks:
When's the due date for completing the surveys?
Aug 31, 2019 4:00 PM # 
Disappointed that the “Masters Orienteering” pertains only to WMOC and not to master in general in this country or elsewhere.
Aug 31, 2019 5:55 PM # 
Yes, walk, that struck me, too. I think it is because the statements are mostly a rehash of the 2010-11 exercise and separate masters/veterans orienteering championships were not yet on the horizon.
Aug 31, 2019 9:01 PM # 
We've had some requests to keep the survey open until the team making US Champs happen comes back up for air, so we'll continue to accept input probably through most of September.

That said, some of the committee members will be seeing each other at the California festivities and we plan to talk through our initial impressions. I'm trying to get as much of the data-crunching done now as I can, since I start school again on Tuesday. So if you have time to give us feedback that I can download by Weds night, that would be most helpful. Hurray for 6-hour flights to the opposite coast?

And I hear you on Masters Orienteering. That's why there's a section for what you think *should* be the focus today. I'm finding those free text answers are really helpful, even though it's a lot of work to get through them all. There's a good possibility we'll go another round on surveys depending on what everyone comes back with, because some of the topic-specific surveys may be pretty off the mark for today's priorities.
Aug 31, 2019 10:54 PM # 
I had a little perplexity on one of the subject surveys (unfortunately I forgot which one)...

It was a section regarding non-O-but-related activities with 2 options: Member of a club; and paid to compete. I wish I had had a 3rd option, along the lines of "participated recreationally" -- which might have been a popular choice for games (video, board, ...)
Aug 31, 2019 11:19 PM # 
Guy, I had the same thought about that section. There were many activities that I have tried or do regularly but I’m not a club member or ever paid to compete so I left everything blank.
Sep 1, 2019 12:08 AM # 
Yes, sorry - think we got a few things mixed up there.
Sep 1, 2019 5:35 AM # 
I selected "paid to compete" because it is closer to playing board games than "being a club member"

Was this the Membership Benefits survey? It didn't have much to do with actual OUSA membership benefits (eg, ONA, reduced NRE fees, ...)
Sep 1, 2019 11:35 AM # 
No, it's on the general survey.
Sep 1, 2019 12:06 PM # 
"Paid to compete" ambiguously reads two exclusive ways: (1) you pay an entry fee and participate; (2) you're a pro.
Sep 1, 2019 3:54 PM # 

This experience has motivated me to take a qualitative statistics course this semester.
Sep 2, 2019 4:41 AM # 
definitely want to look at these, sounds interesting. Might get a few free minutes later this week to start looking at them. Hoping you aren't in a rush to close them down...
Sep 2, 2019 6:59 AM # 
> I guess relying on the Aussies to hijack the thread isn’t a good strategy.
Sorry. We seem to have let you down. Excuse is its coming up to our championship season. Busy.
Sep 2, 2019 12:04 PM # 
Well, glad to see you finally found us, TheInvisibleLog. ;-)

Mike, I will propose to the committee that we keep them open through the end of September, although if you want us to have your ideas this upcoming Friday (some of us are getting together at US Champs after the middle), you'd probably need to respond by Weds evening at the latest.

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