If you ask someone in market research why they decided to work in the industry, the majority will tell you that they didn’t.
Instead, you will probably hear something along the lines of “I just fell into it really, completely by accident.”
While that is the case for most, it wasn’t for me. I actually didn’t fall into it at all. I looked into the role extensively, decided it was an ideal fit for me, and jumped in!
How did I reach that conclusion?
- I have always been naturally curious. I was one of those annoying kids always asking, ‘but why?’. So, the idea of being able to ask questions and try and find the answers – for a living – really appealed to me.
- Market research has the power to inform decisions and enact change. Like a lot of young people, it felt important to me that my career would be one with impact and I found that market research could fulfil that desire. From business decisions and brand strategy, to advertising ideas and ice cream flavors, the impact of market research is present in everything we touch.
- Market research is so multifaceted and complex. There are so many options: quantitative, qualitative, behavioral science, product development, usability testing. The one thing that worried me was my dislike for maths – the majority of quantitative research and data analysis includes a lot of numbers. Thankfully, market research is a complex discipline, and I joined a team of qualitative researchers where I can focus on words instead of numbers!
I am coming up to a year of working in the research world now, and I would say that any expectations I had have been met, and even exceeded.
Here is why:
- It is personally fulfilling and rewarding, even early on. I thought that I would be kept in the background without many opportunities to contribute at first, since I had no prior experience, and this was my first ‘proper job’. Well, I was very wrong about that! From the start, I was involved in hands-on fieldwork, asked for my input during analysis and I even had the opportunity to present findings to major clients.
- It has an impact on people’s lives. Businesses turn to us to find answers to their questions. We can help them make decisions on what markets to expand to, which app features to roll out, how to make their services more suitable to their target audience – the list is endless. I really feel like I have a chance to elicit change in a way that impacts people’s lives for the better.
- It is sociable, and full of experiences. So far, I’ve had the opportunity to attend a variety of team socials, from pizza making to pottery painting! There have been two company parties, a team away day in York, and countless lunches and post-work drinks with colleagues.
- It never feels like a 9-5. Whenever I talk to my grandad about the things I am doing at work, he says, “What kind of job is this, this is not a real job!” What kind of job sends people on a Caribbean cruise to do research onboard? What kind of job has an office full of free snacks and drinks? What kind of job gives you unlimited annual leave?
Well, fortunately for me, my job does. And I can hardly believe it either.