A question was asked on the LinkedIn Q&A forum: “What should MBAs learn about marketing research?” My response was selected as Best Answer to this question, so I wanted to share.
What should MBA students learn about marketing research? Which research methods should they be exposed to?
MBAs should learn to be advanced consumers of marketing research; they should NOT be learning how to actually perform the research.
Ultimately, business managers are more likely to be making the call about whether to spend resources conducting research than to be doing the research themselves. Accordingly, one of the most important things for MBAs to know about marketing research is how to make the decision of whether to initiate a research project.
On its face, the decision calculus is simple: Will the benefit of having this information exceed the cost of acquiring it? Real-world scenarios can sometimes be less clear, but this question is where you should start. Overall, becoming an educated consumer of marketing research offers a much greater benefit to the MBA than does seeing a few examples from the vast catalog of research methods.