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Engage kids and you will have the parent's attention forever

When we plan focus group discussions, we always need to take into account that if your environment is not child-friendly, our sample will be biased. Women with young children or meetings after school or at lunch won't work for them, for example, and thus, we will get the opinions of people who may not be representative of an entire sample. Luckily, I love kids, and they make me happy, so I have always accommodated them in our groups. In NYC, I used to bring my own kids to play with others. Some tips...bring extras of large papers and markers that you can use for taking notes and let the kids trace the smallest one's body and color it in. Bring some smaller papers for older kids.

The most important tip of all...don't assume they aren't listening. Below you will see that one girl made me a card during the discussion that said that her family's potato farm was damaged by frost and this MFI (Crezcamos) loaned them the money to replant. They were able to replant and sell the new crop and pay the MFI back. I was so focused on insurance during the conversation that I missed a big take away from the meeting...the loan!

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