Qualitative Research; 5 tips for running group sessions

Monday, October 31, 2016

At McCrindle we run all kinds of qualitative research from in depth interviews, co-creation groups, ethnographic interviews and of course focus groups. Here are some tips for when you are running any kind of group session.

Make sure the questions flow

When writing the questions for the moderator’s guide, order the questions so that they take participants on a logical and sequential journey through the different topics you are exploring. Keep the most important questions at the start of each section in case you run out of time.

Come prepared and organised

Make sure the experience gets off to a good start by being organised and bringing everything you need and everything you think you might need. A focus group checklist helps to make sure that important items are not forgotten.

Start the way you want to finish

It is important to remember that you (as the moderator) set the tone for the group and create the ‘vibe’ you want. Try and make some light hearted comments at the start of the group and ask each person to introduce themselves to make participants feel comfortable.

Mix it up

The standard focus group length of 90 minutes can feel like a long time when it is limited to group discussion. Try using post it notes to get participant’s quick thoughts on topics, use a whiteboard for brainstorming and electronic voting technology to break up the discussion.

Keep calm and just listen

Participants are going to feel more comfortable if the moderator seems relaxed and in control. They can tell and appreciate when you are listening to them and giving them your full attention. Use your body language, hand gestures and encouraging words to show that you value and are interested in their opinions.

To find out more about the qualitative research we conduct, click on our updated research pack below or head to mccrindle.com.au

Welcome to our blog...

We have a passion for research that tells a story, that can be presented visually, that brings about change and improves organisations. And we hope these resources help you know the times.

Our Social Media Sites

Facebook | McCrindle Research Social Media YouTube | McCrindle Research Social Media Twitter | McCrindle Research Social Media Flickr | McCrindle Research Social Media Pinterest | McCrindle Research Social Media Google Plus | McCrindle Research Social Media LinkedIn | McCrindle Research Social Media Mark McCrindle Slideshare

Last 150 Articles


house price rise insights public holiday HSC narcissism Christmas lunch house price growing population entrepreneurs of today victoria data visualisation Tasmania Aussie omnibus New Zeland dream faux-ciliser mover and shaker tuesday lifestyle education sector EFF blaxland marriages goals poor organisational culture Royals work-life Word Up brand parents careers educhat train Adelaide work mates builders grandparents social trends royal influence Deaths January 26th energy national wealth mobile market research qualitative research research data research pack anzac year 7 census 2016 ultimo Myth entertainment shopping housing market group session Netflix family shifts parenting Christmas season darwin gender speakers 1968 demographic innovative experience report sydneycity volunteers non profit tattoos product social commentary Melbourne Australian schools Aussies media release friendship offenders etiquette investor Engineering Manager skills cost capital cities young people cancel plans sports meetings national crime rates business index optus land of the middle class trends of 2017 ipswich Wagga Wagga Northern Beaches christianity researcher financial future 2020 teleworking Christchurch Merry Christmas global mortgage TDE staff acf15 pyrmont toys engagement not for profit wealth brands the average aussie cultural diversity millenials video innovation SMSF follow google for education Wodonga social commentator school earnings divorce Generation Y Australia Day Australians child care proactive tableau high density living Australian Trends wage geomapping education social analysis deloitte professional speaker thought leadership royal quote social research affordable organisations employers increasing densification earning budget Northern Territory the hills data analyst Valentine’s Day authenticity lalor park education future selfie government #censusfail names 2014 mccrindle tea ashley mckenzie social issues Financial Planning Association of Australia wedding communities university degree New South Wales brand experience neutral bay baby boomers economy google cloudy days SA Tuesday Trends JOMO village winter ethnography insight gen alpha monarchy work greatness Crime Rates ideas population milestone ageing population mentor going out IT Specialists know the times perth social life households digital supply and demand global financial crisis contiki list South Australia teach property price twentyseventeen church sunny days generation alpha in depth interviews menai mateship survey design NSW mother's day investment high school emerging trends mccrindle in the media sentiments ACF 2016 crows nest post rationalism eliane DIY logan retirement cooking Mark McCrindle 40 million motivate The ABC of XYZ baby name predictions hobart responsive renter of the future educated internships the hills shire bondi Australian Bureau of Statistics young australians generational trends australian social research house trend tuesday pharmacies social researchers participants housing trends world financial dreams public speaker in the media affordability environmental scanning trends of 2016 social enquiry internship learn education future report typical australian entrepreneur demographer commuters charity wealth and income case study graphs education research language new office rise of local focus groups overcast environment Assistant Store Manager Western Australia social lives poker master state megatrends workplace urban taskforce sydneysiders customer 2016 business cost of living curiosity baby boom year 12 emerging technologies litter networking Financial Planning Association Sydney keynote speaker goal fresh youth christian medicine 1994 Channel Seven urban living events car easy rider Caregiver VIC census results Canberra trends analyst statistics socialites australian communities forum collaborative resource staying in group clothing high density housing sunburnt country friends holiday norwest marketing men schools students forecasting happiness conference presentation household ACF census fail commute personal growth Financial Planning Week real marriage infographic balance aged care schools income rising house prices stay home cash Research Executive NT dare to dream 2017 emerging generations buildings award winner interactive mythbusting workshop media commentary dreaming baby learning transport culturally diverse tertiary education living Generation X cold FPA trends newspaper social researcher CBD jobs Northern beaches Event World Water Day seasons cartodb debate cancelling event future proof slideshare 2015 snapshot domestic the australian dream leadership repayments townhouses middle class Australian Home visual relational WA equip English Do It Yourself February 16 teacher annual income easter residents teachers paying to work Northern Beaches Christian School online shopping spend waverton earn engage baby names Gen X internet REIV Conference world youth day consumer media aussie culture population map sydney speaker mccrindle research wellbeing ACT Res Vis christmas Australian Census millionth pharmacy employment not-for-profit thrive keynote speaker ABS sun Births shopper's pick communications entrepreneurial hornsby local communities sustainable area story financial independence relevant low density salary home owner Social Trend Australia Day 2017 Education Future Forum average aussie training media activity royal baby workforce travelling high density apartments new york times collaboration generation student Geoff Brailey youth unemployment storytelling click bus social impact demographics criminal future proofing property market award learning styles professional services summer weekly earnings fears Australian Dream rent census crime home ownership Australian communities recap society online vegetarian Real Estate suburbs office space investing social media identity children prince george sector change safe ease of travel demographic trends technology plans community event hills shire data leadership workshop publication Duchess of Cambridge challenge wages community engagement communicate sydney hills news 1980 Channel 7 society trends resilience Love Wellington australian communities trends report career office opening conferences Australian Communities Trends wolloomooloo research long weekend future-proof tips nfp woolworths religion daily telegraph life mining boom sector wide study social change research visualisation FOMO water Population Clock Australian demographics suburb DESTEL baby name System's Architect sydney metro vegemite moderators guide REIV National Conference Scouts TAS Queensland dessert brisbane intern Tuesday Trend school students conference speaker capital city analysis 2016 census potts point social shifts presentations kate middleton Bathburst alpha millennials research services learner australia program father's day faux-cilising bureau PSI unemployment "know the times" changing face of sydney divorce rate stats survey priorities hello fresh conference urban study financial fears suburban living socialising home urban living index holidays New Zealand women keynote forum couple visualisation meals focus group Kiwi Kirsten Brewer school satisfaction future of education university healthy future families travel wealth distribution royal family Territory apartment house prices celebration shbc outsourcing community Australian Families leader teaching politics aged care puzzle owning a home property Christmas presents coffee students wealth and income distribution cars the changing face of jobs of the future 2016 census results faux-cilise office mccrindle financial rain ferry national private wealth Real Estate Institute of Victoria results personalities 1975 social states demographic transformations Hornsby Shire Council communication generation Z The Daily Edition princess charlotte workplace culture cancelling plans optus my business awards global generations define rich manly rental stress small business infographic wall Queensland: QLD Charlotte moreton bay event housing growth economic renting ageing population growth 2012 tv food local forecast baby name trends NEETs 10 years population hopes culture sector wide mythbusters gen z futurist rule keeper eliane miles city public speaking trend future of work australians staying home more Gen Y debt daily commute sydney event weather GPO 24,000,000 McCrindle Speakers generations marrickville growth optimistic winter blues professional presentation tea 23 million 24 million unaffordable future panel facts 2013 Sydney consumerism housing affordability finance gold coast ashley fell professional development huffington post