May Johnstone

Feb 182009

You may be feeling defensive and uncomfortable at the prospect of your project being evaluated.

It feels as if you’re heading to court where you’ll be cross-examined, criticised and then judged. Perhaps you, or your project, will be found wanting with uncomfortable consequences for everyone. Continue reading »

Feb 032009

You’ve heaved a sigh of relief now that the research has been contracted out; time now to get on with all the other things on your plate!

Imagine you commissioned builders to build your house extension; would you leave them to it?

More likely you’d want to check how things are going, maybe even adjust things a little as you go along. Continue reading »

Jan 072009

Once you’ve chosen your survey method, and developed your list of questions, it’s tempting to get right on with the survey. Time is probably egging you on too! But wait a minute, would you cater for a wedding party without trying out the recipes first?

However well you and others have thought out your survey, there’s bound to be at least one glitch to resolve. Much better to take the time to identify them at the beginning than find them after you have run your full survey. Continue reading »

Dec 102008

You have six tenders sitting in front of you; now comes the challenge of checking them all out and deciding how to proceed.

This task reminds me of going to buy a pair of jeans for my teenage daughter. First I need to be very clear of her size and current fashion preferences, then there’s a fair chance I’ll get a pair she likes! Continue reading »

Nov 262008

Before you start out on a journey you’re usually clear on three things: where you’re starting from, where you want to end up, and what you’ll do when you get there. Without answers you may end up where you don’t really want to go!

It’s pretty much the same with research, you need to know where you are now, what you want to know, and what you’ll do with the information you get. Continue reading »

Nov 122008

It’s so easy to put off the task of writing up that report!

Tempting to divert to an easier job, find something that’s more urgent, or a myriad of other excuses.

Here are six tried and tested tips to make report writing more approachable.

They will help you get started quickly. Continue reading »

Oct 292008

You’ve collected and analysed the research information your project needs, now the prospect of writing it up feels a bit daunting.

The good news is there’s no need to reinvent the wheel; there are plenty of good reports to draw ideas from.

To save your time and energy, here’s a tried and tested template that works! Continue reading »

Oct 152008

Summarising what your project is about, and asking questions of potential researchers can feel daunting.

This checklist will help you benefit from the experience of others, put your invitation to tender together quickly, and receive robust tenders.

Then you’ll be well placed to choose between them.
Continue reading »