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Business Research Methods, 9th ed.Chapter 4


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William G. Zikmund, Barry J. Babin, Jon C. Carr, Mitch Griffin

Published in: Education
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Business Research Methods, 9th ed.Chapter 4

  1. 1. Business Research Methods William G. Zikmund Chapter 4: The Business Research Process
  2. 2. Information • Reduces uncertainty • Helps focus decision making
  3. 3. Types Of Research • Exploratory • Descriptive • Causal
  5. 5. Exploratory Research Descriptive Research Causal Research (Unaware of Problem) (Aware of Problem) (Problem Clearly Defined) “Our sales are declining and “What kind of people are buying “Will buyers purchase more of we don’t know why.” our product? Who buys our our products in a new package? competitor’s product?” “Would people be interested “Which of two advertising in our new product idea?” “What features do buyers prefer campaigns is more effective?” in our product?” Degree of Problem Definition
  6. 6. 6 Exploratory Research Secondary data Experience survey Pilot studies
  7. 7. Exploratory Research • Initial research conducted to clarify and define the nature of a problem • Does not provide conclusive evidence • Subsequent research expected
  8. 8. Descriptive Research • Describes characteristics of a population or phenomenon • Some understanding of the nature of the problem
  9. 9. 9 I keep six honest serving men, (they taught me all I knew), their names are --Rudyard Kipling what, and why, and when, and how, and where and who.”
  10. 10. Descriptive Research Example • Weight Watchers average customer • Woman about 40 years old • Household income of about $50,000 • At least some college education • Trying to juggle children and a job
  11. 11. Descriptive Research Example • Men’s fragrance market • 1/3 size of women’s fragrance market • But growing at a faster pace • Women buy 80 % of men’s fragrances
  12. 12. Causal Research • Conducted to identify cause and effect relationships
  13. 13. Identifying Causality • A causal relationship is impossible to prove. • Evidence of causality: – 1. The appropriate causal order of events – 2. Concomitant variation--two phenomena vary together – 3. An absence of alternative plausible explanations
  14. 14. Stages of the Research Process Problem Discovery and Definition Research Design Sampling Data Gathering Data Processing and Analysis Conclusions and Report Discovery and Definition and so on
  15. 15. Research Stages • Cyclical process - conclusions generate new ideas • Stages can overlap chronologically • Stages are functionally interrelated – Forward linkages – Backward linkages
  16. 16. Problem discovery Problem definition (statement of research objectives) Secondary (historical) data Experience survey Pilot study Case study Selection of exploratory research technique Selection of basic research method Experiment Survey Observation Secondary Data StudyLaboratory Field Interview Questionnaire Selection of exploratory research technique Sampling Probability Nonprobability Collection of data (fieldwork) Editing and coding data Data processing Interpretation of findings Report Data Gathering Data Processing and Analysis Conclusions and Report Research Design Problem Discovery and Definition
  17. 17. The Business Research Process Problem Discovery Exploratory Research Selection of the Basic Research Method Selection of Sample Design Collection of the Data
  18. 18. The Research Process (cont.) Editing and Coding Data Processing Interpretation of the Findings Report
  19. 19. Stages In The Research Process • Problem Discovery and Problem Definition • Research Design • Sampling • Data Gathering • Data Processing and Analysis • Conclusions And Report
  20. 20. Problem Discovery And Definition • First step • Problem, opportunity, or monitor operations • Discovery before definition • Problem means management problem
  21. 21. “The formulation of the problem is often more essential than its solution” Albert Einstein
  22. 22. 22 State the research questions and research objectives
  23. 23. Hypothesis • A statement • that can be refuted • by empirical data
  24. 24. If you do not know where you are going, any road will take you there.
  25. 25. Secondary (historical) Data Pilot Study Experience Survey Case Study Exploratory Research
  26. 26. Exploratory Research Techniques Two Examples • Secondary data (historical data) – Previously collected – Census of population – Literature survey • Pilot study – A number of diverse techniques
  27. 27. Focus Group Interview
  28. 28. Research Design • Master plan • Framework for action • Specifies methods and procedures
  29. 29. Basic Research Methods • Surveys • Experiments • Secondary data • Observation
  30. 30. POPULATION SAMPLESample: subset of a larger population. Selecting a Sample
  31. 31. Sampling • Who is to be sampled? • How large a sample? • How will sample units be selected?
  32. 32. Data Gathering Stage
  33. 33. Data Processing and Analysis
  34. 34. Conclusions And Report Writing • Effective communication of the research findings
  35. 35. Research Proposal • A written statement of the research design that includes a statement explaining the purpose of the study. • Detailed outline of procedures associated with a particular methodology
  36. 36. Research Program Strategy
  37. 37. Statement of Research Objectives Problem Definition Defining Problem Results in Clear Cut Research Objectives Exploratory Research (Optional) Analysis of the Situation Symptom Detection