Heather Wendlandt Writes for Greenbook on the Skills Modern Researchers Need
On 18th November GreenBook’s blog publication published an article written by FlexMR’s North American Client Development Manager, Heather Wendlandt. In The Skills Modern Researchers Need, Heather takes a look at the essential skills insight professionals need when fully apply insights to improve business processes.
The struggle of an insight professional can be accurately summed up by one very poignant statistic that Heather found when writing this article: that only 13% of businesses are actually leveraging the data researchers generate for them. 87% of companies are not doing anything with the data we provide them, and it’s time for that to change.
The Skills Modern Researchers Need
Here are four key skills that will help us boost that percentage, and enable businesses to take charge of their own futures:
Every organisation is filled to overflowing with lengthy reports, charts, graphs, quotes, and data tables. It’s taking it’s toll in the fact that data and insights, and market research in general, aren’t paid attention to as much as they should be; and definitely without the gravitas that it deserves.
So, storytelling techniques from other areas of life have been drafted in to help with making research results more memorable and even more entertaining to read. The emotional footprint of a good story makes on a person means that the results will be much more impactful than if they were communicated without storytelling techniques.
2. Data Fluency
Data fluency assumes you are literate and fluent in the different data sources that form this “common language”, so you can communicate effectively with clients and colleagues. The sheer volume from different sources of data out there in the modern world these days is staggering.
Become the data fluent expert so you can recommend more specific and appropriate methodologies and solutions to your clients that can answer their business needs, and you will capture their attention!
With the lack of empathy and relentless drive for data, we have attracted “professional” respondents who are growing increasingly unreliable as they get to know what answers we think we need, rather than the ones we actually need. In the end, being more empathetic and respectful of respondents’ time will generate higher quality data. Higher quality data means more accurate and memorable insights!
4. Design Innovation
It’s important in today’s world to incorporate a “design thinking” mentality when it comes to innovation. If you haven’t heard of this term, let me elaborate: it’s a mindset that demands a human-centric perspective mixed with a scientific approach towards solving business problems
Gone are the days where only the Quantys do surveys and the Quallys do focus groups, we need to get away from these silos and instead embrace cross-departmental and collaboration between teams.
While these four skills have been encouraged for years, we are still lacking in them; furthermore, the nuances of these necessary skills will change and evolve as the industry does, so let’s rethink these skills for today’s modern world for insight professionals. To learn more, check out Heather's full article here.
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