Its already February, and with many having already forgotten their New Year’s resolutions, I’ve decided to help you dive back in to focus mode as you make 2023 your best year yet.
Significant Insights is a treasure trove of wisdom, tips and advice. With a wealth of opportunities to learn from others, we are a hub of growth and professional development.
Every week we unlock career journeys from our diverse community of researchers, all from different backgrounds and experiences. The exchange of knowledge and expertise is at the forefront of the industry and where technology and methodologies are constantly evolving, continuous learning is essential to stay ahead and succeed!
Below I deliberate on my favourite advice from some of our industry leaders and amazing researchers that I have had the pleasure of learning about.
Gain a fully rounded appreciation of research and analytics – Charlotte May, Group Head of Research at Legal & General
It was a pleasure to pick the brains of someone who has had such a wide range of experience in the industry – from food service to financial services – and while Charlotte doesn’t advocate that we all become number-crunching, pattern-obsessed data scientists (although that is definitely not a bad thing!), an appreciation of data, modelling and tools of analysis can help us reach significant insights!
Be a sponge – Dr Nick Coates, Global Consultancy Director at C Space
This is probably one of my favourites. Soaking up the wealth of knowledge and opportunities that the industry offers in a variety of areas – from arts policy to banking to neuroscience – means taking progressive steps to find what turns you on in your career. Nick says that finding your passion is job #1, and I couldn’t agree more. So, take it from a truly accomplished industry leader and find what makes you tick! I personally apply Nick’s advice to all aspects of life, and truly believe that, if you search hard enough, there is joy and wisdom in everyone and everything – you just have to be willing to soak it up.
Challenge the current status quo – Alex Baines, Research Manager at Walnut Unlimited
Alex rightly points out that junior researchers will have fresh perspectives compared to the habits and traditions that exist within the industry, and whilst we all have our reasons for doing things in a certain way, challenging the status quo is never a bad thing. By following Alex’s advice, junior researchers can ensure that MR retains its reputation as being, among other qualities, an exchange of ideas and insights, unhindered by pre-existing notions of authority.
Push yourself to work on challenging projects – Mark Langsfeld, Chief Executive at mTab
As an expert in AI and customer analytics, Mark probably knows better than anyone how we can harness challenging experiences to develop a better understanding of customers. Without challenges, there is no growth, so taking the leap into unchartered waters is a great way to characterise your 2023!
Create a plan for yourself and where you want to go in the future – Alfie Adamson, Senior Consultant at Epiphany
I confess I am slightly obsessed with plans, strategies and data, but whether you have the next decade or the next few months planned out, having a direction is a great thing. The market research industry encompasses so many different fields that you can plan which one you’d like to explore next, and where you would like to be in one, five, ten or twenty years’ time.
Look for organisations you want to work for – Lee Chan, Insight Lead at the UK Health and Security Agency
Former interim Behavioural Insight Manager at the FA, trustee of the Social Research Association, and now heading up Insights at the UK Health and Security Agency, Lee Chan knows a thing or two about finding excellent organisations to be a part of. She advocates that junior researchers join organisations they want to work with and worry about the details of their role later. Joining cultures that foster an appreciation of each individual’s journey is essential to ensuring that you enjoy your work as well as thrive.
Be forever curious – Lynda Thompson, Research Manager at Lynda Thompson Research
This has got to be my favourite piece of advice. Being curious and nurturing an inquiring mind not only makes fantastic researchers but also makes fascinating individuals. Adopting a curiosity that extends to learning more about people, their decisions and their lives, junior researchers will be able to get to the heart of consumer insights, voting behaviour and everything in between!
So there you have it. My favourite advice from the stories we’ve shared here on Significant Insights. of course, there are many more, and I couldn’t possibly display them all here, but I’ve done my best to capture what the industry is all about!
Here’s to 2023 being your best year yet!