Ethnographers often find themselves in the unenviable position of delivering bad news to companies. Their role in understanding human behaviour and culture can uncover uncomfortable truths about a company’s products or services. These revelations can lead to resistance or denial from the company, especially when they challenge established beliefs or threaten financial stability.

Ethnographers must navigate these situations with tact and diplomacy, ensuring their findings are communicated effectively. They must be prepared to defend their research, highlighting its value and potential to drive positive change. Often, this involves reframing the news as an opportunity for improvement rather than a problem.

Despite the challenges, the role of the ethnographer is vital. Their insights can help companies better understand their customers, improve their offerings, and ultimately, succeed in the marketplace. Consequently, ethnographers must continue to deliver their findings, no matter how uncomfortable, and companies must learn to accept and act on these truths.

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