If you think training is expensive, try ignorance

Derek Bok, Educator and Harvard President

“Joanna worked with us to develop a very tailored qualitative skills training framework. She spent a lot of time getting to understand our business and the team’s needs, and it always felt like a collaborative effort. The planning and pre-work were meticulous; the workshops themselves were lively, engaging and fun. Feedback from the team was unanimously positive, and everyone was able to apply learnings straight away. I’ll recommend Joanna to anyone who needs to build qualitative skills. It’s a pleasure to work with such a passionate expert.”

Mike Stevens  EVP & Managing Director EMEA | Vision Critical

is most cost effective for small groups from the same organisation. You will have a course designed for your own needs, delivered at your own offices. Or online, if you prefer. All courses have 3 months follow up support by telephone or email to ensure people can apply what they have learned.

For training in depth interviewing or group moderation you will need to know most of what is below – as well as having a chance to practice and get feedback. Parts in bold are essential – the rest is optional, depending on the level of knowledge you already have.

  • Advantages and disadvantages of qualitative research – you have to know when and why to use it correctly
  • Range of qualitative methods – discussion, observation, collaboration, face to face and online. Are you really using the right method? Groups are not good for everything.
  • Stages of a project, recruitment and setting up
  • The mindset for working qualitatively – how to minimise and manage sources of bias, best practice in interviewing
  • Building relationships, empathy and rapport
  • Interviewing skills and practice
  • Group dynamics and how to manage the stages of a group
  • Managing difficult people
  • Using stimulus material
  • How to write a guide
  • How to maintain energy and engagement in a group or interview
  • Choosing and using Projective techniques
  • How to do analysis and interpretation (in outline)

The training is a mix of theory and practice – the most important practice being in interviewing skills and then moderating part of a group discussion.


Trainings are available at Foundation level (for people with up to 2 years experience but little formal training) and at Advanced Level, for active professionals

Other trainings cover methods, projective and enabling techniques, and analysis and interpretation, as well as more specialist types of interviewing.

How long does it take?

A basic moderating training is at minimum one intensive day. This includes a filmed practice focus group and some feedback. A day and a half is optimum.

Feedback on videotaped groups and interviews

A lot of people just want feedback on their interviewing and moderating skills, with pointers for development.  If you can make available a recording of an interview or group, (with some notes on the objectives and topic guide), Joanna can provide written feedback. Full confidentiality of the project will be maintained.