Manager, Research and Data Visualization - Private Sector

"My job is about transforming organization and customer data into a competitive advantage for users inside and outside of my organization. In the Google age, information is a commodity; everyone has it, but very few know how to use it to drive their growth. My team’s work helps our clients to make better business decisions based on valid evidence, not only isolated anecdotes. Our expert analytics and findings create insight into the future. I’m part statistician, part design aficionado  and all storyteller. My ability to blend the worlds of numbers and emotion is my currency. I am all about using my research ability and my data manipulation talent for good."

Salary Range:

$108,000 - $137,000

The Tip

In a world of hype for big data and analytics, people forget digital communications is about real people. Get out from behind your screen and talk to someone different every day.

Priority Knowledge & Skills
Systems Thinking

Knowledge & ability to:

  • Understand systems thinking

  • Analyze and map systems

  • Identify and make plans for future trends

  • Recognize trends, opportunities and underlying patterns

 

Human-Centered Design & Design Thinking

Knowledge & ability to:

  • Think laterally

  • Identify patterns

  • Work with third-party groups, such as think tanks, labs and accelerators

  • Ability to formulate research questions

  • Conduct secondary, qualitative and/or quantitative research

  • Synthesize key issues

 

 

Communication, Collaboration & Facilitation

Knowledge & ability to:

  • Use contextual knowledge

  • Communicate effectively in all formats

  • Design and facilitate collective impact initiatives

  • Cultivate new collaborations and partnerships across sectors

  • Use technology and specialized collaboration tools

  • Compelling presentation & report writing skills

Changemaking

Knowledge & ability to:

  • Apply changemaking principles to create impact

  • Ask questions

  • Embrace challenges as opportunities to create systemic change

  • Demonstrate long-term social impact and sustainability

 

Oversight & Knowledge Management

Knowledge & ability to:

  • Develop and manage the planning process

  • Direct coordination of activities across departments, stakeholders, clients & users

  • Manage operations & resources; provide oversight

  • Leverage stakeholder relationships

  • Develop and implement program schedules

  • Budget management & oversight

  • Evaluate social, financial and collective impact

  • Manage and analyze complex data

 

Core Transferable Skills

Be an expert at all core transferable skills:

  • Thinking skills

  • Communications skills

  • Organizational skills

  • Interpersonal skills

  • Technical literacy

Building Block Experiences
Education & Learning:
  • Bachelor of Arts (Psychology), minor in Computer Science

  • Graphic Design Diploma

  • VP of local chapter of Toastmasters

  • Became a TED Fellow

 

When it comes to numbers and data analytics, people trust credentials. This required me to spend more time in a classroom. But once I had the credentials, plus deep experience, I became both unique and valuable. I’m part analytics guru, part anthropologist, and part creative designer. To be great, I need to persuade senior people to act on my recommendations because if they don’t, I’m just another data and design nerd.

Employment Experiences:
  • Entered data for large corporation during university

  • Worked as administrative assistant at real estate office for one summer job where I observed economic trends and patterns

  • Collated data on donors for philanthropic organization for two summers

  • Obtained research assistant position in psychology faculty at local university

  • Sessional instructor at local college and taught 3D computer modeling, and animation

  • On a long shot I applied to a marketing agency as a Researcher. Not only did I get the job but I also discovered the evolution of that position was to add the data visualization position I now hold

 

Frontline experience interacting with real people (e.g. suppliers, clients, and students) early in my career offered a lens into stakeholder psychology. I love analytics and evidence, which led me into data-driven decision-making roles. Combined with my design skills, this gave me expertise in using data to persuade and influence decisions.

 

Working as a Researcher for a private company had pros and cons. I learned about the field and thrived on combining the design side with the practical research side of my personality. I am sure when they hired me they understood my potential, long before I put the combination together

 

Community Experiences:
  • President of analytics club in university

  • Alumni mentor following graduation

  • Involved in local TEDx for nine years, including two years as board chair

  • Member of the Provincial Blockchain Consortium which is part of an emerging effort to identify align, coordinate and support blockchain initiatives in our province

 

Real-world experience opened me up to new people, stakeholders, responsibilities and industries. I got out early and often and met people with diverse perspectives. I find that contributing to my community had a huge effect on my career trajectory. Working in different sectors and organizations helped me to become aware of different perspectives. I noticed trends and then practiced discussing those observations with people, so I could be comfortable communicating with people from different backgrounds/training. This really helped me when working with clients and trying to help them determine their needs.

Contextual Experiences:
  • President of the chess club

 

My chess friends and I had discussions about identifying trends before they occurred. I didn’t realize at the time how useful that would be in my work.

Relationships:
  • My inquisitive personality has contributed to my proactive networking and pursuing diverse career mentors (at all levels), which created connections to jobs

 

I built relationships with senior stakeholders early on. I found people naturally like to share their knowledge and impact others, so I made sure they knew the difference they made to me.