Recently, my wife showed me an article (see URL at the bottom of this post) on how valuable, nay lifesaving, checklists can be in medicine and in particular for surgery; and well it got me thinking about research and all the moving parts in a research project and how we could all benefit from a good set of checklists.
I’ll get the ball rolling with one of my favorite checklists and I invite you to share yours [you are welcome to post your checklist on this blog and on our website].
Scope the Research Requirements: A Two Step Dance
The following provides a two-step check list to help structure the task of defining your (or your client’s) study objectives and than setting up project parameters consistent with those requirements. These are just simple guides and you should use them not as end-points, but rather as a starting point to develop your own checklist.
Step A. Understand the study (and stakeholder) Objectives (This is the single most important step):
- What business problem is the study trying to address?
- How do the stakeholders of the study think the research will help them address their needs?
- Do stakeholders need results for an event, budget cycle, or strategic planning process?
- What is the timeframe for completing the project? (i.e., # of days, weeks, or months)
- What beliefs and/or assumptions do stakeholders have about what the research will reveal?
Step B. Project Parameters:
- Type of respondent (e.g., CxO, LOB, Developers)
- Number of market segments (e.g., company sizes, industries, adoption criteria)
- Length of the interview (e.g., 10, 15, 20 minutes)
- Number of questions (e.g., 10, 25, 35, more)
- Data collection method (e.g., web-based, telephone, in-person, other)
- Geographic scope (e.g., N. America, Europe, World Wide)
- Total sample size (e.g., less than 100 or several thousand)
- Analysis requirements (e.g., descriptive, predictive, market weighted, multivariate)
- Type and scope of the deliverables (e.g., executive summary, presentation, report, seminar, white paper, cross tabulations or banners)
If you can address these points, you have a good grasp of the project. If you cannot, you might want to do a bit more work up front before you pull the trigger.
Can you please share with me (in the comments below):
1 – the most valuable take-away you had from any of our blog posts
2 – what you want me to write about next
And, please send out a tweet and tell a couple of people about this blog – Thanks! http://researchplaybook.com
|Join Our Email List|
NPR Story January 5, 2010 http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=122226184#122220935