CASE ASSIGNMENT 1
Build the management-research question hierarchy, through the investigative questions stage. Then compare your list with the measurement questions asked.
“The success of any research process relies, in part, on how well investigators are able to translate a clinical problem into a research question” (Thabane, 2009). In order to build the management-research question hierarchy, through the investigative questions stage, one must first ask what the management’s dilemma is that is requiring a research study. After reading the National Cash Register Country Club case, it is clear that the management’s dilemma is due to the fact that the National Cash Register Country Club’s membership is low and management is looking for practical ways to increase membership. One of NCRCC management’s goals is to create a newfound interest in the social membership aspect of the club in order to bring social membership up. The second goal of the NCRCC management is to increase golf memberships to at least 680 members. However, management has been having trouble finding meaningful ways to increase membership over the long term.
In order to solve the issue of the management dilemma, management needs to come up with management questions on how to remedy the dilemma. Two questions in particular come to mind. The first being, how can NCRCC increase club membership? The second being, why is NCRCC having difficulty in attracting new members? Now that the management’s dilemma and management’s questions have been laid out, it is important to define the research questions. “The first steps of any study are developing the research question, aim and objective. Subsequent steps develop from these and they govern the researchers’ choice of population, setting, data to be collected and time period for the study. Clear, succinctly posed research questions, aims and
CASE ASSIGNMENT 1
objectives are essential if studies are to be successful” (Doody, 2016). What are the best options for management to remedy the problem of declining membership? This can be answered by focusing on certain research questions that seek to identify possible courses of action. What factors are causing a lack of interest in membership? What does the membership numbers look like at other comparable country clubs in the area? Is there anything that management can do to increase membership interest in the NRCC during the golfing offseason? Is the level of service up to par with other comparable country clubs? Obtaining answers to these questions would give management a good idea on where to focus on making improvements.
The McMahon Group was hired to assist NCRCC’s strategic planning committee with strategic planning. One problem that the McMahon Group discovered is that NCR’s employee numbers are decreasing. This poses a problem because NCRCC was historically a private employee only club and they could only rely on NCR membership to expand. NCR needs to look into opening up the country club membership pool to include non-NCR employees. The McMahon Group also found that the possibility of expanding the country club’s offerings to include services for children, a swimming pool, fitness area, tennis courts, and other similar amenities would help attract new membership. Expanding the country clubs offerings will help increase the perceived value of the country club’s membership during the golfing offseason. McMahon Group needed to conduct a survey of a focus group in order to collect information to investigate the best course of action for increasing membership.
CASE ASSIGNMENT 1
The McMahon Group conducted a survey of a focus group. “Conducting focus groups is a qualitative research method that allows researchers to collect a large amount of data from a substantial group of people in a relatively short amount of time. Focus groups explore how people perceive, feel about, or view a certain service, product, topic, etc” (Wilson, 2016). The survey found that overall, members’ felt that they were not receiving the benefits and service that other similar country clubs offered (Cooper, 2014). This survey helped the McMahon Group narrow their focus in order to find ways to improve the country club and the overall experience of members by asking members several different investigative questions. These questions included members overall satisfaction with the country club, what the focus of the country club should be, why each member joined the country club, and members’ satisfaction with country club employees and management (Cooper, 2014).
Given the research question, how appropriate were the measurement questions?
The measurement questions were good questions and a good place to start to give management an idea on what the thoughts are of those surveyed. However, I think that management can now narrow their focus to what was found in the results of the survey. Upon reviewing the results of the survey that was conducted by the McMahon Group, it is apparent that the majority of those surveyed thought that an enlarged bar/lounge and improved driving range was of most importance to the country club. The original purpose and focus of the NCRCC is the golfing experience and social experience. When one hears of a country club, one immediately thinks of golfing and socializing at the clubhouse. So, naturally, the golfing and
CASE ASSIGNMENT 1
social experience is what is going to draw people to become a member of a country club. Management should focus their initial efforts into improving these areas. Members will tell nonmembers about their great experience at the country club and this will help incline more members to join the country club. If NCRCC wants to attract a new demographic to the country club, after improving the golfing and social experience, NCRCC may want to look into expanding the country club’s offerings and facilities. However, this should be a focus down the road and NCRCC needs to focus on the golfing and social experience, which is the whole reason that country clubs exist in the first place.