How can you better understand the needs of the humans you serve?

We are excited to share the entire recording and additional resources based on this event with Manon Philippin

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  • 0:00 Teaser
  • 01:11 Talk: Human Insights and Service Design
  • 03:49 What is the role of customer perception in business success?
  • 04:53 What is an insight and how does it differ from a fact or observation?
  • 13:29 What resources are available for businesses on a tight budget?
  • 17:28 The importance of human insights in Service Design
  • 17:36 Q&A
  • 18:35 Does psychology help for human insights?
  • 20:32 Quantitative versus qualitative surveys?
  • 23:59 How to go from observation to insights?
  • 27:39 Is Mintel a good research agency?
  • 29:14 Platforms and recruiters for the Swiss Market and beyond
  • 32:54 AI and human insights
  • 36:29 Tools and programming languages for human insights
  • 37:49 Outsourcing research
  • 41:31 Does AI change how you collect data?
  • 42:47 Human research is low tech
  • 45:51 Why Manon loves unconscious biases
  • 47:30 How to collaborate with Manon
  • 48:41 Closing words




In this Swiss Service Design Network event, Manon Philippin discusses human insights for Service Design.

The conversation explores topics such as the difference between facts, observations, and insights, how to go from raw data to insights, resources for finding human insights on a tight budget, and the value of AI in human insights.

Talk: Human Insights and Service Design

Manon delves into the importance of customer perception in business success and explains the concept of insights. She highlights the role of human understanding and biases in building impactful insights and shares methods for observing behaviours. She emphasises the need to combine different sources of data and business knowledge to derive insights that drive action.

What is the role of customer perception in business success?

Manon discusses the significance of understanding customer perceptions and their influence on decision-making, product innovation, communication campaigns, and revenue generation. She explains that valuable human insights help make better decisions, create better products and services, and improve communication strategies.

What is an insight, and how does it differ from a fact or observation?

Manon defines an insight as a clear and deep understanding of a topic or problem that sheds new light on it and that leads to action. She distinguishes insights from facts and observations, highlighting that insights have a direct influence on the audience and are derived from evidence. She demonstrates the power of impactful insights through examples and provides tips for crafting concise and memorable insights.

What resources are available for businesses on a tight budget?

Manon shares cost-effective resources for gaining human insights, including internal data, search data, social data, industry reports, research websites, and free online reports. She encourages businesses to cultivate a love for their customers, combine resources, and not let cost be a barrier to understanding their audience.


Manon engages in a Q&A session with the community, addressing questions about the role of psychology in understanding people. She recommends resources, suppliers and tools that can help service designers discover new human insights.

This summary was made by using the automated transcript (created with Descript) and passing it through The host has reviewed, adapted and shortened the summary for accuracy.

Automated transcript

**Daniele:** Welcome Manon, great pleasure 

**Manon:** to see you. Great pleasure.

Thank you so much for the invite Daniele, I'm so happy to be here. 

**Daniele:** So Manuel, the stage is 

**Manon:** yours.

Thank you so much for spending a bit of your Valentine's Day with me. Today is going to be about relationships, the one with your customers. 

## Talk: Human Insights and Service Design

**Manon:** So we're going to talk about Connection, listening, understanding, so we're on point for today.

And you might still ask yourself, who is speaking to you today? My name is Manon, I am a big passionate about people, I am always trying to understand what is going on in people's mind what are the dynamics of situations and interactions that I see. But on the professional side, I have a background in marketing and then I was working for Procter Gamble in the Consumer and Market Insights team where I learned also a lot on customer jobs to be done and shopper psychology.

Today I have the pleasure to work for my own clients on these matters and to help drive people informed decisions. What I'm going to talk about today is, with no big surprise, insights and then how to get from data to insights. I'm then going to share some resources, some of my special ones that I use most of the times, and then we'll go into the discussion.

So let me kick off with a question. You can do a guess in your mind how many small businesses fail in the first few years in Europe. You probably have seen this number we often hear that 90 percent of startups fail in the long run. And actually in Europe, it's 50 percent of all businesses of all small businesses that fail within the first three years.

And what does that have to do with today? Actually when we look at the top two reasons why these companies fail, it is because of poor product market fit. So having a product that is not suited for a customer need or does not serve a customer problem or tension. And the second reason is not implementing the correct marketing strategies.

On that point I found a very interesting study that I wanted to share today. We are actually not the best judge of our visual and our communication and our ads regarding what they mean and how they're interpreted by our audience. So another question for you which of these two visuals do you think is more appealing to customers?

This is a study made by research industry research company for the Arizona tourism, and they've tested along many years, different visuals, so they really had the knowledge over time. But let's just take this one for the sake of the exercise. If you've made a guess, I don't know about you, but I chose The one with the people, and actually it's the other one that scores higher of 20 points, which really shows that ad testing, understanding what resonates with your customer is really key, and actually it does drive ROI.

## What is the role of customer perception in business success?

**Manon:** In the long run, so the point here is really that it's your customer's perception. That is your reality, and I don't know about you, but I've heard many people that always have an opinion regarding their marketing strategy, what you could do better, and actually there's only one opinion that really matters, and it's your customers.

So having valuable human insights helps to do better decisions, make better decisions, and better products and services, better communication as we just saw, and ultimately better revenue. And this goes through many phases during your, the life of your business, so from product innovation, service design, or communication campaigns.

And it's actually our job to really understand what are the tensions that our customers have, what are their needs, what do they hate and do they really understand what we propose to them? What solution do we have to that problem? Do you have a concept that really resonates with them or does it not even make sense?

So let's get back a little and go back to basics. 

## What is an insight and how does it differ from a fact or observation?

**Manon:** What is an insight? And I'm probably sure that you heard this word a lot. It's very trendy in the business world. So let's check definitions. First, a very simple one from the Oxford and Cambridge Dictionary. An insight is a clear, accurate, and deep understanding of a topic, of a situation of a problem, shedding a new light on something.

When we talk about human insights, it's really more about understanding the drivers, the motivations that drive behavior and actions. And this is often linked to empathy and is often influenced by context. And when it comes to business this really is. of use to make informed business decision, and it actually evolves from evidence.

And this is really key here, it's that it's not only a piece of evidence, it's not only a data point, it's not only an observation, it's really the understanding that builds upon this.

A few questions that can help you get to that is really asking yourself Why is this important and what can we do about it? And the difference with a fact, for example, or with a simple piece of evidence is that this really has a direct influence on your audience. It is not something that everybody knows out there.

It is not something that is in your data sheets, but it's really something that has a direct influence on your business, on your customer, on your product or service. Let's take an example and, of course, I very randomly picked the theme. If we look at a fact that is that flower sales spike significantly around Valentine's Day, and actually it's quite crazy, the million of roses produced for today which means it's a significant spike compared to other days.

This is a fact, it's a data point. We can have, draw an observation on this if we do a bit more research we can understand that people wait until last minute or a few days before to buy flowers for their loved ones. But then what would be the insight when you build upon this and you add a bit of your business knowledge?

So the insight could be something around the fact that this procrastination just shows that the emotional significance of the gesture is prioritized over timing. So what? You should cater to last minute shoppers, ensuring that they can express their sentiment with ease and thoughtfulness. 

The interesting thing with Insight is that it can fuel communication, it can fuel marketing campaigns, it can fuel product innovation, as I mentioned before and just to illustrate that with another example that is not Valentine's Day linked if you take the Dove campaign for real beauty, it was actually based upon an insight, which is that women do not see themselves in unrealistic depiction of beauty in advertising.

And this is not the simple observation. That was at the basis, which was that women say they don't like most beauty product ads. So if you have one claim or one data point, this is that women say they don't like most beauty product ads. What is go a bit deeper and understand what is the motivation? What is the emotion behind?

And this is where the power lies. So I put a few more examples here, you, I will not go through all of them, but so you can understand a bit the the mechanism behind what's interesting in this one would be that it relates to attention that there is a big spending on Valentine's Day, but Most individuals say they're really not really excited about the fact that this became very commercialized, that it's a bit capitalistic.

So how can you help with attention? How can you ease that tension with your product or service? I added a third one just for fun, I will not go through it in order not to bore you with these three examples, but you could have guessed now a bit the ingredients that I used for impactful insights. So there is always this data point, but then we add some human understanding and we add a business implication and you could ask yourself to make them really impactful.

Is this new? Is this something that we didn't know? Is this memorable? And is it easy to act upon? Maybe, yes, you will say that my insight before was quite long, and this is also part of the last polishing is to how can we shorten, how can we go to the core, and how can we make it a bit more memorable?

So here, if we take the same example that I explained before, we could have something that is like emotion beats the clock and flower bites. And last but not least, Cater to last minute shopper for effortless, thoughtful gestures. So really combining, making it more punchy and more memorable for your teams and to share within your company, your brand and teams.

So what is key here in this first part is really to understand that These are not about looking at something, it's really looking for something. So it's more than a fact, it's more than a data point, it's really the why behind the numbers and what you should do about it. So concretely, what does this mean and how can we get from this data to insights?

Three components. Let me go a bit more into details in the human understanding part. To really build upon this data. You can say that this is a bit of a challenge for researchers because we're humans. We're full of biases and we have a lot of drivers that we are not even aware of.

And as Kaneman showed, 95 percent of our decisions are taken in autopilot mode. And The good news is that most of these biases are universal, so we can also understand and predict them if we understand which biases may impact our business or service.

To put our heads around behaviors, we want to ask ourselves, what do people really want? Why do they struggle getting it? What problem are they really trying to solve? And to illustrate this a bit better, if we take the example, for example, of Coffee in the morning. What do people want? Do they just want a cup of coffee that tastes nice and make them want to feel awake?

They do, but if we, can we go a bit deeper? Can we understand the emotion or the real motivation below? It could be something like, I want to feel my best. I want to feel like I'm gonna size the day. Or it could be something around the fact that it's comforting to have a routine, something that I repeat every day.

And this, when you understand the deep need of your audience, this is not going to change. And this, these deep motivation, deep emotions are something that stay while context changes. For example, with a coffee, if you communicate, feel ready to size your day, this is not only related to coffee. So if the trend of coffee changes and tomorrow it's matcha, then the message will still resonate with your audience and you can still be relevant.

In terms of methods, so what is important when we really want to understand behaviors is to observe, so observe in context. We can also identify instinctive choices. There are a lot of methods and a lot of research firms now have have new methods to really understand behaviors. And I've seen surveys, for example, which are like Tinder, and two copies or two visuals, and you have to swipe very fast.

So in order not to overthink and really understand the instinctive choice and as I mentioned understand the human biases that are at play and go beyond traditional research methods. Here a few steps for the the overall flow. So you start by collecting the data. You take notes, observations, you look at concrete data sheets if you do have have any data points that you need in your analysis.

Then comes the part of condensing, analyzing you can, when you look at everything that you combine, what comes out? Link the themes and see, and then go to the last phase, which is interpret and conclude. What's really important is to combine sources. So again, going beyond one data point, but really combining different sources.

And then add your business knowledge, add your understanding, add your interpretation, in order to get to the insight. And, of course, it's a bit challenging to go from this huge analysis to one statement, as I showed before. One statement that includes the data point, the human understanding, and the business implication.

And here, just keep in mind that you have to share only what is most important, what drives, what really focuses on the consumer problem, what is the opportunity for your business, in order to have this very impactful insight that will drive action. 

## What resources are available for businesses on a tight budget?

**Manon:** And you may think then, to do this whole analysis, it probably costs a lot, and actually, having a customer centric approach does not have to be very costly.

So let's talk a bit about that and some resources that you can use as of tomorrow, even on a very low budget. And first thing first is to check what already exists. So this could be internal data if you've sent out some customer feedback surveys, if you have already some reviews, if you have also other online free resources.

So you can check search data on Google, what terms are associated with your service or brand or industry look at what consumers are talking about, look at the trends over time. You can also check social data, so how consumers talk about you online be it on social media, be it in reviews. And this is really interesting to capture the real consumer expressions and trends.

And yes, of course, you may need some surveys and behavioral studies to understand really attitudes and behaviors, but, and this is, so of course, doing a survey from scratch costs a bit more, but. Still good news, maybe some others have already done it for you. And this, for example, for the anecdotes I'm working for a client who has a very small budget, so we couldn't do a study.

And I actually found online accessible and free some data points and a report that did just a study six months before with exactly the questions that I wanted to ask. So That was a great long, but it's not only, it's not really rare and you can really have amazing gold mines online, free and accessible.

So I'm thinking industry reports, I'm thinking research and consulting websites with blogs, webinars and reports that they share freely. And you also have a lot of data. So statistic offices, for example, share a lot of their data online for free Eurostat and this kind of website. So I shared a couple of my favorites and my, the stuff that I was really surprised that was free and accessible online with you.

Here they are. So it's just a few in a million, but you can really get into the habits of whenever you have a question related to customers in your field, Google it first. If you put PDF, you may find some amazing free online resources. For example, I put some here that if you're within these industries, they're really interesting.

Sustainability, there is a globe scan study that is conducted each year, and there's ton and ton of data. Really interesting things in there. In the travel industry, Hilton, Skyscanner, Booking, Amex are doing trends reports year after year, so really interesting to check these out.

Deloitte and McKinsey, so on the consulting side, have great resources online now to understand first how people were coping with COVID, their perceptions on value, how it changed, and now Deloitte, the Consumer Signals website, which is You can really see and understand the context, the macroeconomic context where people are cutting spend, where they're not cutting spend, so how are they reacting to inflation and so on.

So an amazing resource as well. And Eurostat has a data browser where you can filter all of the data that you need in one one place. It was quite fast, but here, if you need to remember four things, a couple of Cs to remember from today, the first one is cultivate your love for your customers, make it a habit, don't do it only once, listen to them then on the concrete part, combine resources and get to the core, and then cost shouldn't stop you.

Because I think the biggest cost, as we've seen with a very high percentages of businesses that fail, the biggest cost is to not do anything and not focus on your customers. And fourth and last point, if you need help, I'm here to help, so please call me if you need it. 

## The importance of human insights in Service Design

**Manon:** And here was my little overview on my favorite topic, and now let's have a, let's have a chat.

## Q&A

**Daniele:** Absolutely, thanks so much for all of that knowledge Manon. It's it's been a pleasure to see all of that, and we have already a few questions in, but I'd like to Maybe add a few elements specific also to more the UX and service design world. Another great resource is Nielsen Norman Group.

For those who are looking for that, they have a lot of research. Some a lot is free, but there are a few also paid reports in there. And I have to say back in the days I've used some of their paid reports and they are. Damn good. So really go look for that. And as you said, the costs, sometimes you think, Oh, 500 bucks for a report.

That's a lot. But then again, it's 500 bucks and you didn't do anything. It's quite it's a good it's a good investment. So that's like just one little thought that I'm going to throw in here, but people have very good questions. And I will start with A question from again, sorry, French speaking.

## Does psychology help for human insights?

**Daniele:** As humans are diverse and have individual views on their surround surrounding, do you think that generalized human psychology can help in really understanding people?

**Manon:** I think so, yes. Because I am, I've been reading a lot on, so both on the side of psychology and also these behavioral biases and. A lot of tests have been made and most of these are universal, so of course there's some elements of culture that comes into play and this kind of stuff, but most of the instinctive biases are universal, so they can help us understand people even with different backgrounds and even with different areas around the world and different cultures, so our instinctive biases are, yes Wired brain, how it's wired, it's the same way.

So understanding how these work can really help, yes, in understanding people. 

**Daniele:** Absolutely. And there are very good resources. For example I remember having studied, I think it's either on Coursera or edX, like a course on behavioral economics, and it was free again done by a university.

It changed my, the way I see, my work as a service designer. So really check also these courses, Psychology 101. I think Behavioral Economics is another one to check. Another one that I would highly recommend is Motivational Interviewing. It's, that's really deep also.

So for people interested in psychology I think this is one that is very good also that I could recommend. Do you have other pointers for people that they could Google, like words that they could Google to get started or references? 

**Manon:** So my big favorite is it's Behavioral Principle Applied to Marketing and it's a book and There's tons of tests and there's like a checklist that helps if you want to use social proof bias, how can you apply it to your business and it's really interesting.

So I can share the full title with you 

**Daniele:** afterwards. Awesome. 

## Quantitative versus qualitative surveys?

**Daniele:** We have a question from Manu who asks, What do you think about qualitative as opposed to quantitative surveys? 

**Manon:** They don't have the same purpose, in my opinion, and using qualitative research can really help understand all the human nuances and understanding the emotions and the wording that people use, so it's really interesting and you get in very few interviews, It's very rich in human insights but then I would use a quantitative survey afterwards to dimensionalize, is this resonating with other people if you, if for example you had in a qualitative survey something that comes out which is really related to I am frustrated when I see this and then I would put it in a survey or the top five reasons that came out of the qualitative interviews.

How many people resonate with that? So I would then place a quantitative study afterwards to dimensionalize these these points. But qualitative has a richness that quantitative doesn't have. You can use open ended questions in a quantitative service to grasp these consumer wordings and expressions, but qualitative has a richness to it that is really interesting when you're trying to understand emotions, for example.

And there's different types of qualitatives as well, just to mention the jobs to be done is a very specific kind of qualitative research where you will So really look at for example, people that stopped using your product or stopped coming to your shop or tried something else and understanding why they did that can really help uncover some other types of insights.

So even in qualitative research, you can have different approaches that are really rich to understand human behaviors and emotions and drivers. 

**Daniele:** I love how we have Swiss answers, it's a typical Swiss thing where we say, both are very good, we can't choose, we are mutual people.

But I think there, there is also something very inspiring to me. And in my practice, I've seen, I've worked a lot with qualitative things, and then. Now I'm playing around with turning qualitative and like quantitative visualizations, which is a fun thing to do, because it speaks really well to, the Excel thinking brains that are usually like top in hierarchies, where you can take like 50 interviews and then say, okay, on a graph plot, these are the key struggles that people have, but you did.

You went through it in a kind of an open ended way, but then you translate it in a way that can be grasped into kind of one graph. And it feels very strong, when people see that kind of for decision makers, it's really helpful. So I think it's not either, but rather to say, Hey, how can you combine them to have the richness to, to be able to have both the depth and then also be able to say, this is a problem that is.

Not just for two people, but it's just a problem which is general. That's definitely something that people will love. 

**Manon:** Yeah, and I've been seeing a lot of, there's a lot of this kind of stuff happening now. So when you do, there's a lot of platforms where you can do interviews, live interviews, but you can now integrate Some quantitative elements to it, so you can ask questions before, you can ask questions during the interview, but then the platform captures it, so you have a form of data behind.

And the same if you use open end in a quant survey, and then you can use AI to analyze tons of open ends and get some kind of yeah, more qualitative type of answers.

## How to go from observation to insights?

**Daniele:** And that's a perfect transition for the next question which is from Estelle and she asks, how do you go from observation to insights? Maybe do you have some tips? Because when I see your example About, the Valentine's Day, I read in the chat someone who was just answering, Whoa, like at the moment where you clicked to show the insight, because it was this moment of, Oh that's much deeper.

And so what's the magic that happens between like fact observation and then insight? Do you have a few pointers or tips that you can give to people? to do this exercise? How can you do and how can they do that? 

**Manon:** Yeah, so it is indeed the tricky part but it's this part really where you First, look at everything that you have, so the data, and then you may do some observations, some studies that are a bit more in depth, so maybe a qualitative survey, maybe you go and observe people in your shop, Daniele has a lot of these methods showcased also in his books and studies, so observing people, trying to understand their frustrations, so using all of the tips that I gave, so Looking at what they're saying online.

And once you have all of this, try to map the key things that come out of it. Try to understand okay, here, there's a a thing about last minutes. And here is the thing about emotion. And here is the thing, a theme about third aspect. And when you look at these themes, and this is where the kind of your business understanding and your interpretation comes in.

It's when you see and you look at all these themes, what makes sense? Why is this important for your business? And I think it's really, so it takes a bit of a brainstorming and kind of workshop mode where you look at everything that you have, try to see themes emerge and interpret what it means for you.

Why are we looking at that and what does it mean for the, for your business? So yeah, I would say merging these themes and getting the message out of the key conclusions and the key understandings that you're 

**Daniele:** seeing. It's a very good question. That's back in the days when we were on agency side, both, I remember the day where trainees came to, to, to us with piles of data and stuff.

Like when we asked them to do some research and like my favorite question was like, Okay, this is a fact, what can I do with it? And that's the question which I was like, it's interesting, but how can this help the project? And I think that's a very interesting question that maybe that's something that can help us to go from observation to then saying, okay, this is an insight.

And sometimes the insight can be a bit Just more of a hypothesis, that we share sometimes it's linking different things together to then build something which is more of an insight. But the question, the questions that you brought and this kind of general question of, okay, what do I do with that?

How can I use that? How can this make my service better? How can this make our communication better? I think that's like the real question. And as long as you don't have that answer, then it's maybe not an insight. Still an observation. 

**Manon:** Yeah, and sometimes you have to be really careful about, and you need to get really deep into that level.

And I was seeing that in my previous job that some people came and said Hey, I have an insight, and this is it. And my boss would look and say, So what? Like, why do we care if you don't have a direct link to your business and you cannot do anything about it? If you can't answer the so what question and have a recommendation, strategic recommendation behind, then is it really an impactful insight?

## Is Mintel a good research agency?

**Manon:** Open question. I've seen, just I've seen in the chat a question about Mintel. Yeah. So Mintel is a is a supplier, let's say a research agency and they provide a lot of reports and they provide a, they have a platform where you can find reports and data. And they also do consulting in research fields and actually I, so I've worked with Mintel quite a lot and I think it's, I have a very good opinion about Mintel.

I think they have great reports and I think. If you have a subscription with them, you have access to two things which are really interesting. They have consumer data that you have access to. So you can really understand and have these data points for free. So you don't need to place the survey, but you have access to their customer data.

And the other interesting thing with Mintel is they have a huge database of new product launches. So you can really go into that and uncover trends of what is the most trending ingredient in XYZ? What is the yeah, so claims, ingredients even just looking for or how do you say, tracking all the products that are coming out in your industry.

So that's quite interesting. So for the reports, the customer data and their new product launch database, it's it's quite a good supplier, I would say. At least in 

**Daniele:** my experience. And so what are other suppliers that exist? Because I know we've playing in the backstage with a few of those and we exchange notes from time to time about the platforms we like and those which we like less.

As I'm an optimist, I'd love to, to focus more on The, the good stuff. 

## Platforms and recruiters for the Swiss Market and beyond

**Daniele:** Are there other names of platforms that you see, which are interesting can be both for the Swiss market and maybe also broader, as we see, there is a lot of people who are coming from all around the world.

**Manon:** Yeah, sure. I would distinguish a bit in two groups. So there's the big players, which have big reports, which do consulting and in there, the big names would be, so I'm thinking Conta, Nielsen Euromonitor, for example but they are very expensive, let's say. And then if you want to do it yourself, you have a lot of re new research platforms, and actually there's tons and tons of them, so it would be hard to have an extensive list.

But some of the ones that come to my mind, so ones that have very big panels and that are quite cost friendly, let's say, so there is Toluna, which is a research company, they have a huge panel, you can do surveys, you can do interviews there is also AYTM, which is really great, and actually, they have a very interesting panel in Switzerland, which this is, for me, super interesting because I checked a lot of these Platforms to do service in Switzerland and a lot don't have big panels that are representative enough.

So that's really to consider if you want to have a representative segment of the population. AYTM, it's an international company. They're very big. But those I would definitely recommend. And then if you want some smaller ones some other names that popped to my mind would be so LISNA Respondent.

io, also very interesting to recruit people for interviews, but they don't have Swiss Bano, unfortunately. So LISNA was interesting. We tried also Paul Fish with Daniele. Do you have any other ones in mind that you wanted to share? 

**Daniele:** Yeah, sure. Paul Fish is a It's pretty cool because it's super inexpensive and super quick to create.

In Switzerland, we've done a few tests and we get to a ceiling of 250 people, the French region that we can get in a survey for the German region. I think it was 200 and for the Ticino, it was like around 50. So it's not the most representative but it's already a good start and it's super cheap.

Another one which is a bit more expensive, Testing Time, you didn't mention it yet. Yeah, so Testing Time is another one which is like one of my favorites. It's a bit more it's like in this kind of sweet middle, like it's not like super inexpensive, but it's quite but it's not yet like the big level expensive where it's going to be five 10 K for just getting started.

So it's. Super good and in Switzerland, they're really good because they started in Switzerland So their panel is really good for Switzerland, but I know they have also people I think in the UK So if you're in the UK, they're quite good and I've worked in the UK with them, too And they're very good.

So obviously I have no Affiliation with them. I just love them and yeah, so that's like A few of these. Listener is also like one of my favorites, but for people they were called Usability Hub before, so maybe that's a name that maybe rings more a bell than the new name.

I see we have more questions, so let me Jump on that. I see a question from Francis. There is always in an event the AI question, and that's, and this one is from Francis. For you manna, would you be able to give some advice on using AI to help with qualitative research from focus groups or more in general?

Kind of what are your experiences with ai? Is it useful does it work for your. Work and if yes, what tools do you recommend? 

## AI and human insights

**Manon:** Yeah, so the big question today, everything about AI, but I've seen a lot of suppliers trying to integrate AI in their services. So to simplify the analysis to, if you have a survey or a point survey, then they will have AI that will pull out some reports or that can analyze tons of reviews, for example, and highlight the key learnings.

For myself, I'm not using specific AI tools. Of course, I tested and played around with ChatGPT for Highlighting key points and it works quite well. So I would not use it on on very restrictive data because, there's always some questions related to the data security.

So I would not recommend using it if it's not just to help you with your own thinking, your own interpretation of the data but to help you with your conclusions, to help you with highlighting the themes that that are the most important this can be used. No confidential data from clients in JGPT, please.

But I know that a lot of people start using AI in their tools. And from what I've seen, some, from different actors in the market. So I haven't seen, I've seen only one actually. I can't even recall the name, but most of people that try to integrate AI right now, none of them are, I would say, to the level that I would Say that replaces a human analysis, for example.

So I've seen AI tools that try to script your business question, your hypothesis, and then analyze and help you analyze the data. And it was not, it was understandable, let's say, but it was not usable as such. So today it's not the best. I've seen some that interpreted some videos. So if you have a live interview, then the the AI would go.

Highlight the insights, and this one was quite good, so we're getting there. A lot of researchers are integrating AI, creating their own AI for security reasons in the back end. But yeah, so I think it can be very useful. I think it is not as of today, replace the human brain to get to the insights, to get to the business implication behind, but it does help to draft a survey, like survey questions to make him review maybe your questions.

Asking him, prompting him to behave as a researcher, market researcher. He can give inputs if you have if you have any questions or depth on your scale that you need to use and so on. And then to help you highlight the key themes or brainstorm with you at some point. 

**Daniele:** Yeah, I think definitely there is this.

kind of misunderstood sometimes AI potential, in this, oh, we want to replace the researcher kind of idea and where there is like even better capabilities at least for now, I think it's in the assistant thing, where it's five, you need to leave at 5.

15 and you still need to write some questions, like just saying, Hey, you are a researcher. This is what I went to find out. Can you draft 10 possible questions? And then you're ba bam. And you say, okay, these two are quite good. I will reformulate them like that.

And I've used that in the past and it helped me a lot. But I have to say in the same things that I tried, like you I gave qualitative stuff, and said, okay, do the report. And then I did it myself and compared. And it's not. So there's a lot yet there frankly speaking at least the tools I've tested, but it's coming and the assistant part, that's already something that we can really use.

And I think there are a lot of great Notion templates prompt guidelines and stuff that you can find online, which are. Which are really good on that. Let's stay geeky! 

## Tools and programming languages for human insights

**Daniele:** We have a question from Lisa, who asks another geeky question. And any programming languages, or softwares that you use for analysis that you would recommend?

**Manon:** I'm not the geekiest person. I'm a very As you can understand, I'm very into the human part. I'm not myself an expert on this. The only times where I had the help of some programming programs with my analysis, it was not through me, it was through a supplier, so I could not have any very specific answer to that question, unfortunately.

Do you have any 

**Daniele:** tips? I've heard a lot of good stuff about the programming language R, I think So that's maybe something to look. Python I've heard a lot of friends speaking about that as something quite interesting to crunch some data and more on the tools side, I think there are some cool ones.

Delftale is one that I've been using a lot for doing the analysis, of a video or a text and of finding the teams quite quickly. That's quite good. Yeah, that's the, those are those that come to mind, but we can then add in the show notes, a few book, a few bookmarks with alternatives to dovetails and this and these tools.

Okay, I think we have a great question, which I love. So first of all, thank you a lot for all your very good questions. It's it's, it makes my life so much easy. 

## Outsourcing research

**Daniele:** So again Avi asks do you think. Outsourcing research can really make a difference to the companies in terms of quality and authenticity.

Does it make a positive impact?

**Manon:** It depends on your level of passion, of the time that you have. If you can do it internally, if you have someone who has the skill and the passion, I think it's already a great start. I think with some of The things that I shared today, if you start looking at some industry reports, if you have time to analyze it and integrate it and see the opportunities, map the opportunities for your business, it's already a great start.

So no need to outsource research for the first part of the customer centricity. And then if you really want to go more in depth, if you really want to have. A super strong basis of knowledge on your customers. If you need a customer segmentation, if you need a full jobs to be done mapping, for example.

Then I would say yes of course, I think outsourcing to people who have a lot of knowledge in the field or consulting research companies that can really help you with that, I think it helps for the quality because I've seen also in my experience some work where, even within suppliers sometimes It can be very complex, and then you ask another supplier to come in and finalize the work or simplify so to the three points that I was mentioning on impactful insights, sometimes it's not memorable enough, sometimes it's not easy enough, sometimes it's not even new, so having really top suppliers that can help you to really have a, an amazing report, which is super crisp and impactful and help you really map The key things you need to know about your customers, if you have specific business questions as well to answer them and very fast with with data behind.

If you need this to go to your management or leadership to help them with a big business decision, then yes, I think if you don't have the skills inside or the time, and you do have a bit of budget to allocate to that, then for sure, I think this is a, I would say it's a good investment to base your business decisions on your audience.

**Daniele:** And having been on both sides, client side and consultancy side, I can also say that, blending both is also very interesting. So that's like the thing that I would suggest to people, even if you're outsourcing stuff, join a few interviews, just as an observer ask management to join a few a few of these interviews, because that's like the magic is often happens often there it's.

And that's the power when it's done inside, is that you can get people from the organization, key stakeholders, to see, what people experience, what they say, and that's I think that you can't put a value on, because it's so valuable, because often then people come out and say, oh wow, okay, it changes my perspective, it changes the way I see the people we serve, but you still can do that, even if you outsource, because you can.

I can very clearly say we want five spots where we can invite management as observers. This is the kind of schedule of our management. They have blocked these spaces. Please recruit people in these moments, and it's very simple to organize. You don't even have to make people move. You can just put the camera and and these people, these stakeholders will just join in a Teams meeting or on a Google Hangouts, and they could observe. I think this kind of blend is where it started to be magic. And again, it's a very Swiss answer. We're always in this very neutral where we would say, yeah, inside is good, but also external is also very good.

I think we have another great question from Manu. Manu is always the one who's asking very good questions. 

## Does AI change how you collect data?

**Daniele:** So Manu is asking today, what to do with AI change the way we collect and analyze data. So is this the way that AI is coming? Is this something that for you changes the way you're thinking about the way you collect the data?

Or at that moment you say, Hey AI will just adapt to the way we work. And that's okay. 

**Manon:** I think AI will just. Be a huge enhancer of everything. I think it can help probably collect so much more data from different sources. It's not even AI, I guess this is in the backend, like to it's more related to big data and so on, but analyzing in the analysis part, for sure, it will help us gain so much time when it gets trained to really uncover these insights.

As we work so again, to my question before, I think today it's not good enough to have only AI analyzing our data, but I think for sure we'll get so much more efficient in terms of speed of analysis and then in terms of collecting data. Except to this point of probably being able to.

Collect things faster and maybe having more data sources. For now I'm not sure on any, I don't have any other thoughts on that, but for the Analyzing part for sure efficiency and speed. 

## Human research is low tech

**Daniele:** And I think there is an observation that I'd like to share here and which will lead to an insight maybe, which is that one thing that I love about you, is that you are like A low tech researcher, you're not like this AI first programming, blah, blah, blah big data girl, but you're more like on the side of, okay, I can crunch data if needed.

But it's still like the work is in the translation between observation to insight. And that's where the magic happens. I'm sure the tools can help me to get faster to the data, faster to the observation, but where the magic happens is really there on that level. And I think that's a kind of a, and that's the insight that I'd like to share is.

If even Manon, of all people, isn't like the most geeky person, I think that's a good reminder also for us that, hey, it's not about the tools, again it's more about how you use them. And sometimes, just pen and paper is one of the greatest tools that you can have. So that's really one thing that I want to shed a light here because we, obviously we are always optimistic about technology and this kind of stuff, and it's shine, it's a shiny new thing.

And therefore, obviously we get very attracted to that, but I think your life is a testament to this idea that it's not so much about the tools, it's more about the mindsets and and and the reflection and the work. 

**Manon:** Yeah. And, I think from also my experience in interviews for now.

It's a human talking to a human. So when I'm talking to a customer and trying to understand his life, for me, it's one hour where I'm really. Making a friend, and it's my interest and my questions will, which will make the insights come out because they feel comfortable, because they want to share their stories with me.

And for now, it's not going to be a computer asking questions that will make them feel that comfortable. So to uncover these things, we need this sort of human touch. And yes, afterwards, it's amazing that AI will be able to Give me in seconds the recording and give me in seconds the transcript, but the human touch for now is Still very basic.

**Daniele:** Absolutely. And there is the whole, emotional even sometimes spiritual experience of the interview, which you will never see in the transcript, like the moment where you felt the person was speaking about, I don't know, the relationship with her boss. And in the words it says, yes, it's great.

He's a great leader, blah, blah, blah. And. In the face to face conversation, maybe even the face is like poker face, but you see the foot doing this, and it's the only moment where the foot is in a scary way, and that's only one thing that you can see in a kind of a, in a human experience.

And that's where you can then poke and say, okay, maybe after the interview, in the corridor, when people know it's not recorded, then just ask. How is it really with the boss? And then people can tell you more stuff. And I think that's where these tools kind of lack sometimes a bit of power. But I have one last question for you, man.

## Why Manon loves unconscious biases

**Daniele:** What's something that is exciting you, that you're passionate about your field these days, that you're researching, that you're like, Oh, this is my new passion. What's something that you want to share? Because I know you are also a very passionate person. And so what's one thing that these days you explore and that you have fun with?

Can be related to our topic, but can also be completely tangent. What's something that you guys recommend to people? 

**Manon:** So I think I teased one of them and it's something that I'm really Wanting to go much more in depth into, but it's these unconscious biases. I'm so interested when I read these books and I think it's crazy that some and even to experience it myself.

I read about this. I, it's my job, but when I'm in a shop and I have this, I don't know, I see a, it's half price, it's red or it's don't miss out. And I fall into this trap myself. And I think this is. It's just amazing to be able to uncover and discover more about these unconscious things that influence our lives and to be able to map them out, to be able to use them in business, to use them with my clients, to use them for good as well.

Because if we can also nudge people towards a more healthy behaviors, then it's also great. So this is one of my work related passion area that I'm. I'm really excited about and very curious about. And I really want to also be able to share more about it. So to have little checklists with like how to apply this bias to your business.

So I can, maybe if you keep in touch on LinkedIn, then you will see some of my posts related to that. Yeah, this is my next big big chapter. Awesome. 

## How to collaborate with Manon

**Daniele:** And the last question is never really the last. For people who might say, Oh, Manon seems like a. A very lovely person and she seems to know her shit and now I heard that There is a good blend where I can do stuff inside, but still maybe get the help of a Manon.

Are you still do you still have open slots in your calendar this year where people could work with you? Or are you already fully booked?

**Manon:** First of all, thank you for sharing that I am available for work. I'm quite busy for February, March. But then I do have. So a bit of my time free to take on a few projects. Yeah, I'm really happy and I'm always so happy to help some customers. And I was also, as I was saying before even low budget, if you need me to check out some sources, showing me to do the bad parts of getting everything together, doing just the first summary of all the learnings.

And gathering all these learnings for you, I would be happy to do that. Some people hate it, I love it, so and learning about your business and how to apply and get some opportunities for you. I would love to, to help with that. Yeah, a bit busy the next couple of months, but then I will be free for some projects.

## Closing words

**Daniele:** Awesome. A big thank you to you, Manon. You've given a lot of your time, your energy, your knowledge to this community. Thank you so much for that. And I wish you all a lovely evening. Cheers. Bye bye. 

**Manon:** Bye, everyone.

This webinar transcript was generated automatically. Therefore, it will contain errors and funny sentences.

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