What does meaningful consumer engagement mean?

Fostering dedication towards shared goals...is just the start.

It would be easy to give lip service to consumer engagement, but Aligning Forces is working toward more than just buzzwords. Involving consumers in a meaningful way anchors Aligning Forces communities, resulting in an informed community committed to the initiative’s goals. Meaningfully engaged consumers improve stakeholder satisfaction and reduce attrition. Genuine and effective consumer engagement is critical to AF4Q’s long-term sustainability. Meaningful consumer engagement is:
  • Effective—Consumers’ participation has an impact on programs and is an integral part of achieving the organization’s vision and mission. 
  • Equitable—All stakeholder groups are engaged, including consumers, and stakeholder representation is balanced; consumers are offered equivalent opportunities in activities and shaping decisions regarding the organization’s work. 
  • Purposeful—Consumers feel the relationship allows them to achieve their respective goals; the organization respects consumers’ interests and uses their expertise. 
Successful consumer engagement efforts include recruitment, strategic planning, relationship building, facilitation, support and retention, and evaluation. They involve bringing in consumers at the right time and speaking to them as colleagues, in language they can understand. Consumers, physicians, employers, and other stakeholders should all be called by their first names to level the playing field. By preparing consumers properly for their role in the Alliance and continuing to support them throughout their participation, the number of meaningfully engaged consumers has the best possible chance of increasing.
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