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Focus Group Definition with Example | PMBOK®

FOCUS GROUPS

A focus group is a small, demographically diverse group of people who participate in an interactive meeting physically or virtually to discuss on a topic or about a new product.

The goal is to know about their perceptions, opinions, beliefs, and attitudes towards the topic, product, service, concept. Questions are asked in an interactive group setting where participants are free to talk with other group members. During this process, the moderator either takes notes or records the vital points he or she is getting from the group. Members of the focus group are carefully selected for their subject matter expertise, effective participation and authoritative responses.

Example:

As part of PMBOK® sixth edition overview seminar, the faculty organized a focus group session with 4-6 participants in each group. Each group was given topic of their choice. The topics were the major changes to the PMBOK® sixth edition. A sample of them are given below :

  • Generic Project Lifecycle and Development lifecycle
  • Develop Project Knowledge – how to apply this process in a organization setting
  • Implement Risk Responses – Why this was not there before and how to apply this process in planning, execution and M&C domains
  • Close procurement: Was this right to remove this process. How to bridge this gap

The team was encouraged to present their discussion outcome before the rest of the seminar audience and the outcome was amazing.

Within Project management body of knowledge focus group discussions are used techniques in the following processes

  • Collect Requirements
  • Develop Project Charter
  • Develop Project Management Plan

PROCESSES

KNOWLEDGE AREA

PROCESS GROUP

Collect Requirements

Project scope
Management

Planning

Develop Project Charter

Project Integration Management

Initiating

Develop Project Management Plan

Project-Integration Management

Planning

Collect Requirements

Focus groups bring together prequalified stakeholders and subject matter experts to learn about their expectations and attitudes about a proposed product, service, or result. A trained moderator guides the group through an interactive discussion designed to be more conversational than a one-on-one interview.

The outcome of the discussion will be documented as part of requirements documentation

Develop Project Charter

Focus groups bring together stakeholders and subject matter experts to learn about the perceived project risk, success criteria, and other topics in a more conversational way than a one-on-one interview.

Develop Project Management Plan

Focus groups bring together stakeholders to discuss the project management approach and the integration of the different components of the project management plan.

References

PMBOK® GUIDE SIXTH EDITION

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