One of the biggest communication problems that market research firms face is complexity. Studies are long, tedious and complex. And, unfortunately, so are our deliverables. This is a huge problem, especially when we are trying to communicate with executives, marketers, and anyone that does not have a heavy research background. Let's face it... they don't have the time or patience to wade through 100 slides of charts (regardless of how cool we think they look).
At VisibleMR, one of the simple visualization techniques we use is layering. We pick 2-3 major findings from the research and find a way to stack and layer the data in a way that is both visually compelling and tells a simple and effective story. Here is an example:
There are 2 basic findings this visualization highlights:
- It's more challenging for companies to stick around (the average lifespan of a company on the S&P 500 is now less than 20 years);
- Yet, this has not impacted worker's satisfaction (job satisfaction has stayed relatively flat).
Hopefully, this leads to meaningful dialogue around specific challenges impacting corporate longevity or how workers deal with lower job security, some of which may have been captured in the research study itself. Don't fret, that's what an Appendix is for. Save your slew of charts for the conversation, not the presentation. It's much more meaningful.