At the upcoming QUAL360 North America conference Paul Hudson from FlexMR will talk about “Creative ways of presenting results – Turning qualitative insights into art“. Paul’s vision is to put “art” into qualitative reporting. We had a conversation with him about the highlights of his session and the current state of Qualitative research.
QUAL360 North America conference will be held on March 24-25, 2020 in Washington, D.C. Get your tickets here.
Qual360: Without giving too much away – what is the core message of your talk and what would you like delegates to remember?
Paul Hudson: I want to open people’s minds to using ‘art’ in qual reporting techniques, or at least a lot more creativity! In the presentation, I’m going to show how we’ve experimented by creating original artworks (sent as postcards to clients) to communicate key insights that come out of qual discussion groups. We’ve been working with a number of brands to find more unique & impactful ways to engage stakeholders and move beyond the typical PowerPoint presentation deck.
In the quant world we have seen the continued dominance of dashboards and in qual we have heard a lot about video; but neither really provoke or stimulate stakeholders into a debate about the meaning behind the insights and the nuanced detail. That’s what we want to change.
Qual360: Why did you choose the topic of your talk?
Paul Hudson: I want to show people that there are different – really creative – options to approach reporting. We don’t have to be led by data to find engaging ways to reach out to stakeholders. Just because we are time poor doesn’t mean we have to slim down reports, lose detail or be forced to find new, faster technologies. Importantly, I want to show people an alternative – a choice to use the medium of art to create a debate with audiences, bringing them into a debate with the insights and findings in a meaningful and memorable way.
Qual360: What motivates you to join QUAL360 NA and what are your expectations?
Paul Hudson: I look forward to learning about how the world of qual is adapting to a world where rapid insights are wanted, one where surveys & text analytics keep promising a nirvana of mass qual. I very much hope to learn that ‘true’ qual is still alive and kicking and fighting back!
I really enjoy the Qual360 conferences because they are a comfortable size; the number of attendees ensures that the conference retains its core focus on qual and makes for excellent networking opportunities. Everyone who attends has a common interest whilst still bringing together a healthy range of varied experiences. This means attendees get great ideas for innovation and a really good debate too – which just can’t happen at large events where audience interests are much broader.
Qual360: There is a lot of talk about the current state of qualitative research – how would you sum up the state of qual and potential future challenges? And what do you think QUAL360 NA as a conference can contribute?
Paul Hudson: The challenges are twofold; first finding time in busy schedules to consider, run and debate the insights from rich qual research and, secondly, competing with a world that is obsessed with speed, large data sets and technology.
Qual feels like it has been in direct opposition to these tensions for the last few years. I firmly believe that qual is not only an antidote to these pressures of the modern business world but also the best, real opportunity to bring meaningful insights to a business. But to do this, the industry really has to learn to live in this new world; challenge for larger data sets, challenge on timescales, challenge on finding new efficiencies, but never lose sight of the core benefits it offers – moderation, probing and discussion. The things that make it human.