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How to run a focus group with traders in a town

I have to run four focus groups with traders from a medium sized town, suffering as a result of the downturn in the economy and the fact that a large multiple retailer has set up outside the town. The objectives of the groups is to gain insights into potential solutions, ideas and questions which can then be used to construct a customer survey which will be carried out in the town.

Any suggestions on how I might structure the one hour long sessions, short of saying tell me all your ideas??


How to run a focus group with traders in a town

Focus groups are a valuable part of the toolkit available to local authorities in carrying out public consultation. Facilitating discussion in a purposeful and open way, making sure everyone has the opportunity to take part, coping with disruptive participants and making sure the discussion remains relevant are all key aspects of onvening focus groups. The development of these skills is essential or maximising the potential of focus groups and running them.