From time to time we will be sitting down with one of TMIC’s team members for our new questions and answers blog segment.
TMIC’s MD, Angela Orsaris, was kind enough to be our first interviewee. The questions put forward were provided by various TMIC team members.
We recently spoke with Angela to find out what makes her tick, what drives her passion and dedication to her role as TMIC’s MD and what she enjoys doing when she has a minute to herself!
Q: Being a successful career woman and owner of a well established business, what is the most valuable lesson you have learnt?
A: To be successful you have to be flexible and empathic, not just for clients but also for your staff. I enjoy my job and running a business because of the flexibility that comes with it. I’ve taken the flexibility that I yearn for and then applied that to my staff as a way of creating loyalty. The most valuable aspects I would say are flexibility, empathy and loyalty to and from staff, clients and suppliers.
Q: What is the most challenging aspect of your job?
A: The changing industry and the fast pace of the change. We’ve had more change in the last 5 years than I’ve seen in the last 20 years. The change comes down to the devaluation of quality market research. People don’t recognise its value and importance anymore. There has been a commoditisation of the market research industry. The second challenge is trying to be profitable in the current environment/market, eg.people want to pay less but receive more. The third challenge is staying on top of the changes that are happening, and knowing which to adopt and which to ignore.
Q: On a personal level, what frustrates you the most in life?
A: Lack of time in everything. Everything in my life is rushed. Even death is going to have a hard time catching up to me, I’m so rushed. I feel like I have so much potential to do things differently or better if only I had more time – this applies to all areas of my life.
Q: Where would you most like to spend time travelling in/to (given cost is no issue) and who would you travel with?
A: Why settle for one country or place? I’d go around the world, with unlimited stops over a 2 year period with not a care in the world, stopping wherever and whenever I wanted. I want to see so many things. I don’t mind travelling with someone or others, but not all the time. I like companionship but need the flexibility to do what I like. I need “me time” every now and then.
Q: What drives your dedication to Market Research?
A: It’s not a dedication to market research per se. I’m driven by trying to understand things and being able to help others be better. What I like about market research is that it’s all about exploration and learning new things, which in turn hopefully helps companies be better and do better. My passion is uncovering information, finding the gems in that information and then pulling it all together to create something meaningful and relevant.
Q: With new technologies becoming available every day, what do you think is the future of the market research industry, in terms of balance between human contribution and automation?
A: I think automation equals data explosion but without human intervention that data is meaningless. So I actually think the future of market research is turning data into something that is easy, meaningful and intelligent. The next step is to uncover the data’s meaning and underlining linkages. We need to uncover the drivers rather than just the data. It’s all about understanding the implications behind the data.
Q: What do you most enjoy about the work you do (eg. the results, the process, new clients, starting up new projects)?
A: The delivery of the outcomes and when a client comes back for more. That’s the most important thing, everything else comes after that. It varies with the client and type of project as to whether I like the selling part and/or the client relations etc, but without a doubt, 8 times out of 10, it is the delivery and the repeat client. Many of our clients are now our friends and that is very gratifying.
Q: What would you choose to enjoy – a good movie, a good book or a nice glass of red?
A: A good movie with really good wine, chocolate, crisps and cheese, please! Why settle for one!?
Q: What do you consider to be the most critical elements in the successful performance of your position?
A: Determination and drive – you have to be really driven to do what I do. You have to be committed to meeting deadlines. You have to be innovative and be prepared to change. You again need to be flexible and empathetic. It’s not just one thing – it’s a combination of things. If you do all of those things and look after your staff, clients and suppliers, good things happen.
Q: Since forming TMIC which single achievement are you most proud of?
A: The long term client, staff and supplier relationships which have turned into friendships.
Q: How do you achieve a work-life balance?
A: First rule is: I ban any talk of work outside of the office or work times. So even if I go out with work colleagues in non work time, they are not allowed to talk about work or about people we work with unless it’s a social topic. This allows me to switch off. I find that very important. When I’m not at work I’m nowhere near as driven. It allows me to be more laid back. Second rule: Flexibility is what it’s all about. If I want to take the day off and be with my family then I’ll work longer hours before that, to make up for it, to make it happen. It’s great to have that flexibility. The third rule: I take regular breaks from the routine of work. I like to go away 3-4 times a year, even for short breaks. I don’t need to go for 6 weeks but short 1-2 week holidays more frequently are perfect for recharging.
Q: What profession other than your own would you like to attempt?
A: It would have to be something that is creative but something I can still make my own. Maybe own a restaurant or lounge bar or I would do something like floristry or something with makeup, beauty or fashion.
Q: Which artist (dead or alive) would you hire to paint your portrait and why?
A: I would say Andy Warhol because of the vibrancy of his work. He captures the superficiality of a person’s look and draws it out through the use of bright colour. I like the simplicity of his art, he doesn’t show too much detail, ie. wrinkles! That whole pop art character look – it’s fun!
Q: If Heaven exists, what would you like to hear God say when you arrive at the Pearly Gates?
A: You, Angela Orsaris are most welcome here! We’ve been looking forward to your arrival.