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Still Waters Run Deep

 

There is an entertainment element to focus groups particularly when they are held in a viewing facility.

 

We want to provide interesting, dynamic groups that generate “meaningful insights” that send both clients and researcher home happy.

 

Sometimes recruitment briefs specify that focus groups should contain “no wallflowers” or words to that effect.

 

X factor, Big Brother, I’m a Celebrity, Instagram and Twitter all favour a loud, extrovert approach to life.

 

But elements of celebrity and social media values are creeping into a process that should be confident enough to include the multitude of personality types that go to make the world an interesting place.

 

As has been shown time and time again, this apparent confidence and conviction can mask ignorance and insecurity.

 

We should make room for quiet, thoughtful people in our research.

 

A few easily learned moderating techniques can encourage a quiet participant to engage with the process and offer insight.

 

“Empty vessels make most noise” and “still waters run deep” are two phrases we should bear in mind when putting together a recruitment brief.

 

According to the Huffington Post well known introverts include J.K. Rowling, Bill Gates, Eleanor Roosevelt and Albert Einstein.

 

What do you think?


Think. Act. Feel.

I saw a guy wearing a baseball cap the other day. It said “Think Positive.”

 

I wondered if he meant the message as a reminder to himself every time he picks it up.

 

Or maybe because it’s facing out when he wears it he’s advising other people to think positive.

 

Think positive is a useful reminder when we’re inclined to dwell on the negative side of any situation.

 

Sometimes things are not as bad as they seem.

 

But sometimes they are.

 

Thinking positive is fine unless it means you do nothing about a bad situation.

 

“I’ll win the lottery” is positive thinking but it won’t make bad things go away.

 

Sometimes it’s better to think negative if that’s what it takes you jolt you into doing something.

 

“This is a bad situation and I need to do something about it.”

 

So the thinking is negative but the action will be positive.

 

It’s the think, act, feel, triangle. When you act positive things get resolved. Then you feel better.

 

Then your thoughts become positive.

 

So my baseball cap will say Act Positive because that’s how things get fixed.

 


Appropriate Attire

In an interview with the Irish Times, management columnist Lucy Kellaway (pictured left) told of her experience when speaking at a banking event in Singapore. She began her address wearing jeans and Birkenstock  shoes.

 

The theme of the conference was authenticity and she wanted to demonstrate that the authentic her was not appropriate when addressing a conference of bankers.

 

During the course of her address she changed into a Diane Von Furstenberg dress which she considered more appropriate to the occasion.

 

Closer to home people like Ryanair’s Michael O’Leary and Mick Wallace TD have challenged the authentic versus appropriate debate and even senior Ministers can be seen out and about on formal occasions without a tie.

 

“Appropriate” is a relative term and one that evolves with time and convention.

 

A survey of office workers in the USA revealed that about a third would prefer to work in a company that has a business casual dress code while just under a half of senior managers said that dressing too casually was the most common dress code violation in their company.

 

To break a dress code dramatically you either have to own the company, be absolutely brilliant, or just not give a damn. The rest of us conform.

    

 

Talk to Us

If you need the kind of consumer insight that drives successful brand and advertising development call Colm Carey on 087-2573346 / 01-2881884 or click here to get in touch so that we can find out what you need and how we can go about meeting your objectives. Our combination of enthusiasm, experience and competitive costing will make sure you get the understanding you need from the research process.