Head of Research – Washington, DC

Ballast Research (a division of National Journal) is a research and consulting firm that helps government affairs professionals build, deepen, and advance their advocacy efforts at the federal and state levels.

We are seeking a strong manager and problem solver to lead our 15-person Research team in collecting data to meet a range of client needs, and to refine and expand the team’s efforts. The Research team conducts research through survey, interview, and focus group mechanisms, focusing primarily on state and federal policymaker audiences.

Key responsibilities include:

  • Overseeing and managing the work of four distinct departments with individual leads: our Qualitative Research team; Quantitative Research team; State Research practice; and External Affairs and Outreach function
  • Working closely with the Client Service team, to understand, distill, and translate client needs
  • Working closely with the broader Research team to develop strategies and project plans for collecting data that map to client needs
  • Overseeing the collection of all data, including problem-solving and course-correcting to ensure the team hits goals for every project
  • Overseeing the cleaning, processing, and organizing of data, to ensure that it effectively enables analysis and insight generation
  • Working closely with the External Affairs team, to develop a longer-term strategy for marketing and advancing the organization’s brand, with the goal of enhancing participation in our research
  • Critically evaluating the team’s various activities, to ensure we are collecting quality data in an efficient and sustainable way
  • Working closely with senior leadership, to determine how to sustainably expand and deepen our work

The ideal candidate possesses the following attributes:

  • 3+ years of experience leading a research team in a similar space (preferably market research or other applied, mixed-methods research)
  • Strong project management skills, including a commitment to ensuring that all project goals are met through whatever means necessary
  • Strong people management skills, and a commitment to giving people the resources, time, attention, and thought partnership they need to do their jobs effectively
  • A knack for problem-solving, and thinking of creative solutions to overcome challenges and meet goals
  • Strong communication and consensus-building skills, particularly in coordinating between and across teams to ensure alignment and develop mutually-beneficial solutions
  • Strong organizational skills, and the ability to manage numerous projects and people at a given time
  • Experience developing and executing on a longer-term strategy, and balancing those considerations with shorter-term projects and needs
  • A dedication to improving processes, and identifying ways to enhance the efficiency of a team’s work

Atlantic Media Values

Across Atlantic Media, generally, the firm looks for two “pillar gifts” in you, and everyone else.  In all of us, these are more aspirational than actual, but they are central in our intentions.

Force of Ideas:  At the center of Atlantic Media work are the ideas within our writing.  We believe that ideas – to the good and not – have consequence.  Our highest work is bringing rigor, insight, intellectual honesty, to that ultimate purpose of separating the bad from the good, and giving voice to the latter.

Spirit of Generosity:  Atlantic Media seeks in its ranks a spirit of generosity – a natural disposition in each colleague toward service and selfless conduct.  Atlantic Media writing should be cut from the same cloth – critical on the merits but informed by charity and forbearance in measuring motive and personal character.

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