A recent course leader specialising in social media suggested that I was over-thinking when it came to decisions such as who to ‘allow’ into my social network. ‘Consider quantity not quality’ was his mantra for the day.
Well I’ve been pondering on this ever since and I’ve come to the conclusion that I’m right and he’s wrong.
Because the quant v qual question has played a large part in my working life and for me the qual word has always held sway.
It’s about the quality of the research, the quality of the researcher that counts; just as it is the quality of the connection and the quality of the relationship that matters in the longer term.
And yes, it’s good to build on these quality contacts but surely the bullet approach will always be an improvement on buckshot.
So I’ve decided to stick to my guns (ha ha) and continue my journey on the qual over quant pathway.
We will continue to suggest to clients that they don’t just ask how many groups or depth interviews they can buy for a certain amount of money but to also ask who exactly will be conducting those interviews and how much experience do they have of engaging with customers, of dealing with clients.
We’ll also continue to argue that whilst some quant researchers can turn their hand to qual, there are times when qualitative specialism counts, and so too experience.