3. Ascribe Significance to This in Context

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Given the topic of the grid and the circumstances in which the interview is

carried out, is the appearance of core constructs, or their absence, remarkable

or unremarkable? For example, in a grid on the topic of death and

bereavement, with elements which include ‘my father’, ‘my mother’, and

‘myself’, it would surely be surprising if all the constructs dealt solely with the

trivia of death certification and choice of undertaker services.

Conversely, a grid devised for market research purposes which had brands of

coffee for its elements would be unlikely to deal in the eternal verities, and the

absence of core constructs would be unremarkable.

4. Assess Relationships. How do core constructs relate to other

constructs; do any of the other constructs appear to receive the same

ratings as the core constructs?

As you’ll see when we analyse relationships within grids in Chapter 6, you can

obtain a good insight into your interviewee’s personal understanding of the

topic by examining the ways in which a grid is structured and, in particular,

how sets of constructs hang together. If the ratings on the two constructs

Doesn’t have office favourites – Encourages flatterers

Reluctant to apportion blame – Seeks scapegoats

were very similar to each other and to the core construct

Justice and fairness to people – Arbitrary and unfair to people

there’s a sense in which the two constructs help you to understand what the

interviewee means by ‘justice’ as distinct from ‘unfairness’ – they serve to

exemplify in somewhat more specific terms what the core construct means to

the interviewee.

There again, you need to be careful: the centrality of a particular construct may

not be obvious from its wording, and you will want to refer back to your

process notes. A grid done by a manager on the performance of his/her sales

team may contain issues that sound trivial, but may matter a lot to the

manager if these have a bearing on the manager’s own job security. The

construct ‘met the annual sales target – didn’t meet the annual sales target’

may sound like a rather peripheral, behavioural construct summarising

operational matters, but it could lie very close to some personal core constructs

relating to personal security and the stability of one’s professional existence, if

the manager’s own performance was under review when the grid interview

took place!