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Qualitative Research: "introducing Focus Groups," Analyzes the Rationale and Importance

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Business Research Paper

Qualitative Research:

Introducing focus groups


April 4th, 2011


Presenting unbiased data that is important in the presentation of quality research. The

article, Qualitative Research: "Introducing focus groups," analyzes the rationale and importance

of focus groups. The purpose of the article is to encourage the use of unbiased representation of the people for the focus groups with the aim of encouraging diversified, genuine, and honest responses through group interaction. Tape recorded written observation, and documentation of individualistic behaviors and responses offers a more reliable data than silent surveys via questionnaires mailed to participants of a research.

The business problem under investigation is to compare the relative openness and honesty of any particular groups' participants of a research while using informal surveys such as email, mail questionnaires, and phone surveys, compared to a formal approach of a researcher's physical presence observing and documenting the behaviors, interactions, and communications of the participants. Problems with informal surveys includes but not limited to: (1) some participants' inability to read and write (yielding no returned survey and incomplete representative of the survey), (2) lack of motivation to partake in the survey (e.g. a participant receives a phone survey and tells the researcher not to call his or her phone again), and (3) lack of complete knowledge of the survey.

On the other hand, using focus groups is advantageous by the following reasons: (1) allows participants, who are illiterates to participate through listening to other participants and motivation to voice their candid opinions, (2) facilitates individualistic interview by the researcher, and (3) enhances diversified knowledge of ideas amongst different cultures. For example, with the goal finding solution to why nursing home patients of an organization are being transferred to competitors in the same area, the nursing home manager could utilize an outside researcher to conduct a focus research of the remaining patients to solve the problem.

Data collection methods that can be used in the research project are:

1. Homogeneity of the remaining patients representing


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