Two days off the plane from Phoenix (Tempe) Arizona, where about 300 QRCs engaged in a 3-day tête-à-tête on the best practices, innovations, and progressive thinking on the qualitative research industry at the lovely Marriott Tempe at the Buttes hotel. It was the 2018 QRCA Annual Conference, held at the lovely Marriott Tempe at the Buttes hotel.
Both roundtables were enlightening. A couple of standout sessions for me were: first-time speaker Kate Watson (PKG 101: Packaging for Abecedarians), who gave a superior presentation on how to approach the seemingly contradictory and complicated arena of packaging research, and A Fresh Look at Business Development, by Marta Villanueva and Cheryl Stella Dalisay, a reassuring reminder that many of us are in the same boat when it comes to the intimidating practice of getting new business. The Confessions of a Subcontractor, by Marilisa Beatty, also held a lot of useful “secrets” for another boat many of us find ourselves in, in increasing numbers and frequency. Keynote was the impeccable Naomi Henderson, founder and CEO of RIVA.
Full disclosure: This year I attended fewer sessions due to running back to the hotel room for interviews on an ongoing project. A nice-to-have problem, I know! Fortunately, QRCA makes the Powerpoint presentations available after the fact, making it pretty easy to check out info on the missed sessions — another one of those “they thought of everything” benefits of the conference.
As always, one of the highlights of the conference was reconnecting with colleagues and making new friends. From Phoenix 2018 to Savannah 2019, and a year of progress in between.