connections chapter news

August 2015
Vol. 14, Number 6

Remember to check out the QRCA calendar of events
for upcoming Chapter events

QRCA Management News
Conference News
Chapter News
Committee News
SIG News
Member News


Eastern Canada Chapter July Meeting Features Webinar by Tom Rich

Margaret Reid,

The Eastern Canada chapter held a meeting on July 17 at AdHoc Research in Montreal (to whom we extend our many thanks for their hospitality, as well as for so generously providing us with beverages and snacks). Those in attendance were treated to an engaging and insightful webinar given by Tom Rich. The title wasLeave the Gun. Take the Cannoli: Using Trade-off Analysis to Strengthen Qualitative Analysis and Reports.”

As many of you are probably already aware, Tom has been specializing in qualitative research for close to 20 years now, as well as having worked in brand management and advertising before that.  He has used this rich experience to develop a very pragmatic framework for qualitative researchers which he refers to by its acronym T.E.M.P.S. – Time, Energy, Money, Performance, and Self-Esteem. The model suggests that consumers invariably consider these 5 components when making choices, whether or not they are conscious of doing so. For example, consumers will decide and weigh the relative importance of the Time expended to buy/use the product, the amount of personal Energy required (ex. degree of skill required or hassle involved/saved), their available Money, the Performance or “ingredients,” and, finally, how the product jibes with the personal characteristics of the individual, i.e. the Self-esteem aspect.

In using this utility model, qualitative researchers can gain a deeper understanding of the real drivers behind consumer choices and what trade-offs consumers make in coming to their final purchase decisions. 

Throughout the session, Tom used case studies, professional insights and a wonderful sense of humour to show us how to be more aware of the five components, probe for them, break them down, and present them in a framework that is meaningful and actionable for clients. It was truly engaging, and all who attended enjoyed the presentation — and walked away with some interesting nuggets.

The session was co-chaired by Pascal Patenaude and Maryse Hudon and attended by Mark Lovell and Kunyi Mangalam (via remote from Halifax). Also in attendance were the two latest members of the Eastern Canada Chapter family; and both Pascal and Maryse kindly took a few moments to explain some of the finer points of the QRCA membership, the role of the board, the voting process, etc. 

Finally, and very briefly, I would like to introduce the new members. Laurence Robitaille is a senior researcher with Sylvestre Marketing, is fluent in four languages and has broad-reaching experience in qualitative research, as well as anthropological and academic research. And myself, Margaret Reid, an independent qualitative research consultant with more than ten years of experience as a bilingual moderator, project manager and ghost-writer.

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Dynamic Double-Feature a Draw for Chicago Chapter

Maitreyee B. Angelo,

With three presenters sharing their expertise, the Chicago Chapter of the QRCA attracted a sizable crowd of quallies on Friday, July 17.  Hosted by watchLAB at its spacious, comfortable, and respondent-friendly downtown Chicago facility, we enjoyed good camaraderie, great presentations from two Toronto-based speakers, and a generous spread of gourmet food (capped off with wine, artisanal cheese and specialty macaroons) by watchLAB.

The first speaker, Daniel Berkal, is the recipient of the 2011 QRCA Qually for excellence in Qualitative Research.  His team at The Palmerston Group was awarded back-to-back 2012 and 2013 Great Mind Awards by the Advertising Research Foundation in New York City.  Daniel spoke of his experiences of making in-situ research fun and productive.  In "The World is Your Focus Group: Using Technology and Teamwork to Break Down the Glass,” Daniel suggests being CCCP – confident, casual, comical and personable – (traits he freely exhibited during his presentation) when conducting qualitative research.  Demonstrating the merits of doing “homework” on respondents, he also showed how to create a safe space for people to be themselves while conducting ethnographies, shop-alongs and other on-site research so that respondents become comfortable and act in a natural way.  Daniel shared his five real measures of success:

  • To have information volunteered without being asked
  • The number of emotionally-charged statements per hour
  • To have it not feel like an interview for any of you
  • To bring up the conversation organically in the future without referring to the project
  • To capture the moment without the moment capturing you

Speaking of using technology and teamwork, the second presentation, “Collaborating to Build Your Business,” was a serendipitous example as Kate Dennis of Open Door Insights and Layla Shea of Upwords Marketing Solutions presented their experiences – Kate in person, together with Layla joining in on Skype from Vancouver, BC!  Kate has 18 years of research under her belt and is also a professional photographer.  Layla’s passion for online qualitative research has been winning her industry awards including the QRCA’s Qually award in 2012 for research excellence at the international level.

Kate and Layla shared a bucket-load of instantly implementable tips and tricks for collaborating.  While many QRCs enjoy the freedom of working independently or as a small practice, this can often lead to a sense of professional isolation.  In this engaging and interactive session, we learned about finding the right person to collaborate with and how to work together in ways that will benefit both parties financially, emotionally — and often both!  The practical aspects of collaboration include ideas such as having a “sounding board” to bounce off thoughts and ideas, sharing the workload of multiple projects and having an enhanced toolkit. Among other tips, Kate and Layla gave us:

    • A good understanding as to whether and when collaboration is right
    • “Watch-outs” when considering a collaborative partnership
    • Insight into their own skills and what complementary skills a partner might bring
    • Networking “conversation starters” and other instantly implementable tips to start informally collaborating right away

All in all, it was a very informative day and, hopefully, productive enough for several non-members in attendance to consider joining QRCA!

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September International Chapter Meeting to Feature Laurie Tema-Lyn

Ilka Kuhagen,
Julia Spink,

The International Chapter will host Laurie Tema-Lyn in a virtual meeting, September 14 - 16, 2015. Laurie is the author of Stir It Up! Recipes for Robust Insights & Red Hot Ideas.

Laurie’s topic will be “Small Groups with Big Impact: Designing Consumer Co-Creation Programs.”  She will discuss several studies where in-person, consumer co-creation provided powerful learning to impact client decision-making.

Laurie will highlight how consumer co-creation can generate product and marketing ideas for food, beverage, and consumer durable companies; and offer practical tips including:

  • Special recruitment considerations.
  • Preparing client teams for positioning experimentation and effective listening.
  • Developing consumer and client pre-session activities to prime the pump for new ideas.
  • Integrating multi-sensory creative activities into the process.
  • Creating dynamic meeting environments.

The meeting is scheduled over three days, September 14 through September 16, in the form of an online Bulletin Board hosted by Focus Forums.  Presentation sections will be posted for listening and discussion, enabling everyone from any time zone, regardless of scheduling limitations, to participate.

Participants will be able to log in at any time, and as often as desired, using personal login details to be provided prior to the presentation.  Attendees will be encouraged to add comments, and Laurie will log on during the period to answer any further questions.

Participants will also have the opportunity to introduce themselves to fellow International Chapter members.
QRCA members can register by emailing with a request to participate. Non-members should send their full contact details to Julia as well.

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Tom Rich Featured Speaker at Annual SoCal Mini-Conference

Susan Thornhill
In June, Tom Rich was the keynote speaker for the SoCal Chapter’s 15th Annual Mini-Conference.  Two highly-regarded presentations were enjoyed by attendees: 

  • “Beyond Comfortable Shoes:  A Practical Guide to Shop-Along Studies.”  Highlights – This session was chock-full of Tom’s tips and tricks for in-store studies, from using a local recruiter, assigning roles to anyone “viewing,” taking lots of photos, asking participants to repeat great quotes on video outside the store to enhance reporting, the Fogg Behavior Model, and writing the report for its audience (client or retailer). 
  • “Leave the Gun:  Take the Cannoli:  Using Trade-off Analysis to Strengthen Qualitative Analysis and Reports.”  Highlights — Tom’s system has five elements:  Time, Energy, Money, Performance and Self-Esteem; his guide isn’t modified for these elements, but as he’s moderating, he listens for these five themes which helps him in analysis and reporting.

There was also a discussion of new transcript coding software options Quirkos and Reframer Optimal Workshop.

The content-rich SoCal Mini-conference concluded in Westwood with a casual dinner complete with wonderful camaraderie and our sharing one of the more famous Los Angeles legends (see photo) with Tom! You, too, can visit Marilyn’s unique resting place across the street from Schlesinger’s West LA facility.

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