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Business Research: Understanding Questions

What is the proper method for asking questions?
What should be done if a question is misunderstood?
What should be done if a respondent answers a question before it is encountered in the questionnaire?
Support your answers.
Why is it important to think of the research report from a communications perspective? Support your answer.

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Solution Preview

First one must determine the intent behind the asking of the questions. In business statistics,
it should not be just to satisfy curiosity or to provide input for a study or survey. Since
business research is designed (as is every business activity) to help the business to increase
profits, the answers gathered should provide data that could become useful information which
could be applied to that basic purpose. Some examples of useful question categories are:

1) To measure performance of an ongoing service or production process
2) To evaluate conformance to standards
3) To assist in forming alternate course of action in a decision-making process
4) To determine the position of a business in a competitive market

In order to reduce misunderstanding, questions should be clearly stated. In education, being

able to ask good questions in a test or in a classroom discussion is similarly important. Some

of the types of good questions are:

Clarifications: What is a specific, concrete example of that?
Evaluatives: Why do you like or dislike this (or agree or disagree with this)?
What is the best order of ...

Solution Summary

The proper methods for asking questions is discussed. What should be done if a question is misunderstood is determined. Communication perspectives are given.