We’ve Come a Long Way, Baby
A Celebration of Research Pride Month
Yes, I am of the age where I want to sit around telling “In MY day…” stories. But today is still my day because I get to share this amazing profession with you. And this blog post is a rampage of appreciation over how far along we’ve come.
In 1988, I would have to leave my building to go crawl around the basement of the Harvard Business School to look at dusty old copies of the Standard and Poor’s Business Directory to find out how long my prospect had been executive vice president of his company. It was there that I realized that the president of the company had the same last name of my prospect’s wife’s maiden name, and so I had to go to the Personal Name Index to the New York Times, upstairs, to find their wedding announcement and find out if he married the boss’s daughter. And he had.
In 2008, I was coaching a staff member on how to discern all of the flood of data that she had on her prospect. I talked a lot with my team about figuring out if something online was based in fact rather than an expression of opinion.. We were coaching our gift officers and management on why we didn’t include some Googled data in a prospect’s profile, and how we determined real information over opinion. In other words, we have gone from searching for tidbits of information to sifting through a flood of data.
Over the past 20 years, what have we gained besides fabulous technology and the Internet? Here are some gains:
If there is anything in the list above that you know you don’t enjoy in your shop, then you have something to do to make your job better. If your opinion is never asked for, give it in subtle ways and see if you’re heard. Be proactive in suggesting new prospects to your clients.
On the other hand, if you are enjoying everything on our benefits list above, then you have a different responsibility: You need to create the Next Big Thing for our profession and share it with us.
Mind you, we still have many things yet ahead of us, like these:
Isn’t that great? We have things to do! I love being part of something that’s bigger than me, and I love having goals ahead of me, even as I complete other goals.
The best thing I get out of being a researcher and an analyst is that I get to use my introvert skills to forward the cause of humanity. Because my college degree lifted me out of poverty, I support and work hard to assist colleges and universities. Because girls’ programs were sparse to help me as a girl, I support and want to assist any organization that provides good experiences for adolescent girls.
My work has value. Your work has value. You are one of the thousand points of light that George Bush spoke about in his 1989 inaugural address. How fabulous is that?
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