Job Summary: Understanding people holistically requires that we explore and explain the breadth and depth of the cultures in which people live. This includes global and U.S. cultures as well as popular culture and diverse subcultures. Horizon's cultural intelligence practice is charged with decoding and converting shifts in the global zeitgeist into cultural trend intelligence that unlocks opportunities for business.
The SVP, Cultural Intelligence is a futurist and change forecaster, with a breadth of vision. This person is a true creative catalyst with the proven ability to combine both cultural intelligence and a real understanding of people to develop strategic foresights that both inform and inspire, with an understanding of how brands can leverage these foresights to impact their business. In short, a divergent forward-focused thinker who is also able to cogently synthesize and translate into actionable directives.
As a key leader within the WHY Group, the SVP will lead development of our trend forecasting approaches, create new product and service offerings, represent the practice in public settings, such as press interviews, industry panels and speaking engagements and partner as relevant with the SVP Human Intelligence on agency thought leadership initiatives. With input from his/her staff, this person will set the vision for Cultural Intelligence, including overseeing a publishing calendar, research priorities and content output, and ensuring delivery of all CI products, standard/syndicated as well as custom, meet or exceed WHY quality standards of excellence. He/she/they will also work with external PR partners to ensure maximum press potential of all relevant published content.
Another critical element is to identify potential revenue-generating opportunities for either Cultural Intelligence or the WHY Group. These opportunities can be with existing Horizon clients or with other industry client contacts. This person will have at his/her disposal all of the research resources, tools, technologies, and talent available within The WHY Group center of excellence and across the agency as a whole.
Duties and Responsibilities
Develop a research agenda, engage in research efforts designed to uncover current and emerging trends and consumer behaviors. 10%
• Developing expertise on an assigned set of industry categories and/or consumer groups (e.g. retail, financial services, automotive; Millennials, U.S. Latinos, families, etc.)
• Identify emerging topics and cultural hotspots as well as resources and methods for exploring all topics of interest (e.g. outside trend resources, influential media sources, visionaries and tastemakers, syndicated reports, social media monitoring, in-field explorations)
• Within the WHY Group's Cultural IQ knowledge management hubs, track and post cultural signals on a regular basis while setting up and monitoring key RSS feeds.
• Monitor all resources related to research agenda and surface new trends monthly
• Collaborate regularly with WHY Human Intelligence cohorts to ensure synchronicity of vision and activities, as well as sharing ideas and resources where needed
• Manage research activities of direct reports and review all content they produce
Independently lead the design, execution and analysis of focused research efforts to
inform cultural intelligence, which may include quantitative, qualitative, and social research. 20%
• Quantitative: Design and lead quantitative research projects such as primary ad hoc surveys on topics related to his/her research agenda; design and lead primary surveys fielded with vendor partners; lead analysis of quantitative research including data runs, creating charts and graphs; mine and interpret syndicated data (MRI, Nielsen, Comscore, Horizon's .blu platform etc.)
• Qualitative: Design and lead qualitative research projects such as focus groups or
in-depth interviews; ethnographic in-home studies or cultural "ride-alongs;" trendspotter idea exchanges online and in person; in-field city or neighborhood explorations
• Direct social media research efforts: Monitor influential social media people and
feeds; independently employ social media and social listening technologies in
support of cultural trends work, especially related to his/her research agenda
• Tap into Human Intelligence experts as needed
Contribute to regular syndicated/standard cultural intelligence deliverables that not
only enhance the agency's thought leadership practice but also can be leveraged by Horizon's clients 30%
• Independently pursue, publish and present cultural thought leadership pieces, ensuring there are clear business, marketing, brand, communications and/or media implications
• Contribute to creation/development of proprietary macrotrends, Trends to Watch briefs and bi-a nnual "Top Trends" reports
• Create topical deep dive reports on industries, categories, consumer groups, key topics in marketing, etc.; assume leadership role on at least three per year
• On a quarterly basis, independently develop POV briefs, whitepapers, and/or other cultural intelligence content related to his/her research agenda for release to the agency, its clients and the public
• Act as a representative of the practice in public forums: press interviews, speaking engagements, industry panels, etc.
• Partner with VP of Cultural Intelligence on continued development of new cultural intelligence and TrendSights deliverables with an eye toward identifying potential revenue generating products/services, including further development of Cultural IQ
• Collaborate with Human Intelligence experts as needed
• Manage content creation activities of those reporting to him/her
Independently develop and deliver custom cultural intelligence projects for clients,
including identifying and pursuing leads 20%
• Identify and pursue leads for custom projects
• Collaborate with client, Horizon business solutions teams (if an existing Horizon client) and WHY Group leadership to set objectives, design appropriate custom research solutions, draft SOWs and fee proposals, and deliver final projects.
• Manage custom projects and thought leadership activities of those reporting to him/her
Ensure appropriate training and development of direct reports 10%
Develop and maintain fluency in using Horizon's many data resources, including but not limited to: MRI, YouGov, Helixa, Magid, Toluna Analytics, Netbase, and .blu (Horizon's proprietary, deterministic identity framework and database 5%
Contribute to the agency's new business efforts as required 5%
VP Cultural Intelligence (direct report)
Current team is VP, Associate Director and Mgr.
Knowledge and Skills Required:
• Critical thinker with outstanding analytical skills
• Highly engaged in popular culture, news, and current events
• Naturally curious about people and their wants, needs, attitudes and behaviors as well as diverse
cultures and societal shifts
• Thrives on a balance of creative, right-brained work and analytical, left-brained work
• Strategic thinker with proven ability to blend structured data ("hard numbers") and unstructured data (cultural observations and qualitative consumer feedback) and create compelling stories
• Very knowledgeable about media across channels (video, digital, social, mobile, etc.)
• Knowledgeable about new technologies, especially those related to media
• Exceptional storyteller-both verbally and in writing and other forms of content creation
• Experience representing agencies and practices in public settings: press, industry events, etc.
• Thrives in a collaborative team environment
• Background in social sciences (anthropology, psychology, sociology, economics) and/or the humanities (history, literature, languages, cultural studies, critical theory) preferred
• Working knowledge or fluency in multiple languages a plus
• 12+ years experience in a trend forecasting, research, consumer insights, and/or account planning
environment where producing/publishing/presenting/consulting on forward thinking trends, backed by some form of proprietary research was central to the role
• Strong experience in designing, executing and applying various forms of research and consumer
insights -- qualitative, quantitative, observational, ethnographic
• 5+ years experience managing people/teams
• Strong project management skills
• Experience scoping projects and writing proposals for custom research, insights, and/or trend projects
• Extensive experience writing and delivering client-ready reports and presentations to executive
• Proven ability to speak with authority and "command the room" with executive and industry
audiences, both large and small
Certificates, licenses and registrations: N/A
Physical Activity and Work Environment: N/A
The statements herein are intended to describe the general nature and level of work being performed by employees, and are not to be construed as an exhaustive list of responsibilities, duties and skills required of personnel so classified. Furthermore, they do not establish a contract for employment and are subject to change at the discretion of the employer.
It's who we are and how we choose to work.
It means working with passionate people from all walks of life.
People who speak straight and deliver on promises.
A belief that original thinking will make a difference.
It's about nurturing our people and our culture.
It's about moving mountains for our clients.