Congratulations to Minnesota School of Business student Lindsey Nagtzaam! She is the Online Division’s Research Award winner for Fall Quarter 2013. As a part of her Introduction to Business course, which is part of her Health Fitness degree, Lindsey investigated Whole Foods’ mission to secure a long-term profit by researching how Whole Foods maintains a competitive environment, supports a unique organizational structure, manages supply and demand, maintains a steady clientele through their business cycle, and promotes social responsibility.
We interviewed Lindsey to learn how she put together such an excellent research paper. Read on to learn more about Lindsey’s writing experience and her tips for successful research:
Were there any tips you learned while writing this paper that you are going to use next time you write a paper?
Yes, ask your instructor for guidance. They may seem remote but they are available for you. Take advantage of their knowledge, expertise and guidance.
Is there a particular resource that was the most useful during your research?
The Minnesota School of Business Online Library (LibraryConnect) was my most useful resource. I found the majority of my business-related research through MultiSearch on the business guide. I found a plethora of material. I chose to focus on current material that related to my main idea.
Tell us about your previous writing experience.
I’ve been writing for close to 12 years. The US Army Chemical School published my first article, Anthrax Decontamination, in their professional journal, The Chemical Review in January 2003. This same year, I graduated with a Masters in Environmental Management from Webster University.
In 2006, after I separated from the U.S. Army, I worked as a military contractor. As a contractor, I wrote the U.S. Army’s only handbook on Role-Playing in the U.S. Army for the U.S. Army. To promote the handbook’s release, I published a professional article in the Spring 2008 edition of The Guardian, a Joint Staff, Deputy Directorate for Antiterrorism/Homeland Defense, Antiterrorism/Force Protection Division Publication.
Following my work on the handbook, I worked as part of a team to write unclassified intelligence assessments about foreign countries in support of the U.S. Army’s Training and Doctrine Command Intelligence (G2) division. Shortly thereafter, I changed companies and worked to update curriculum for the U.S. Army’s Field Artillery School. In 2013 I returned to college to earn my second bachelors, this time in Health Fitness, at the Minnesota School of Business Online. In my spare time, I attempt to maintain a personal blog.
What is your best advice for other students who are doing research?
My best advice would be to backwards plan. I would suggest initiating your research at least three-four weeks in advance of writing. If necessary, contact the online librarians for help with research and/or the online search engines. Take the time to review the material you research for relativity to your thesis. When you find material you can use as a reference, start to compile your APA reference section. If you start it early, you will not need to rush to create one at the end of your paper.
Next, create an outline of your paper according to the research paper requirements and your ideas. Organize your resources and ideas for each section of your outline. Just for clarity, take a moment to review the outline then begin the writing process. Upon completion, proofread then submit your work to Smarthinking. Finally, review the Smarthinking suggestions make changes, proofread again and submit your paper.
What was the most important thing you learned during your research paper writing experience?
Focus on the main idea of your paper while researching. Try not to read material that does not pertain to your thesis or main idea. The information may seem important and necessary, but could waste your valuable research and writing time.