By: Brian Lamar, Mike Cook

How do corporate insights leaders ensure that all members of their team, even untested rookies, perform at the strategic level that is being demanded by business leaders? Carol Shea of InsightsCentral, Inc. discussed a study with over 300 corporate researchers to define and prioritize the specific skills and behaviors required for insights professionals to be heard and respected, and that the voice of the marketplace is elevated in corporate decision making.

Study findings included:

  • 100% of study participants agreed that it is important to apply strategic thinking skills to their work;
  • Nearly 90% agree that improving strategic skills is important; but
  • 61% stated that current methods for developing an insights professional’s strategic skills are not adequate

The study also identified and validated over 150 specific skills of a strategic insights professional. From those findings, InsightsCentral created an Era 3 Model that moves researchers beyond the Era 2 Model of Designing, Conducting, Analyzing and Presenting research. The defined skills fall under five primary behaviors:

  1. Explore
  2. Refine
  3. Align
  4. Harvest
  5. Evaluate

These five primary behaviors allow insights directors to more objectively assess and develop their team members and provide individual researchers with a blueprint for building their own strategic abilities.

Catch up with the Market Research Shared Interest Group at their monthly events. Thank you to SIRS for sharing their knowledge with us this month and to our strategic partners for helping make the monthly Market Research SIGs happen: EMI Research Solutions, BrandHub, REDI Cincinnati, and OfficeKey.