Gabriel O’Connell - Senior Research Executive

When did you start with Trinity McQueen?

I started with Trinity McQueen in September 2015 as an intern. In November 2015, I was promoted to Research Analyst and then in October 2016 I was promoted to Research Executive.

What skills have been the most useful in helping you progress?

As a Graduate Intern I didn’t know what to expect.  It was important to use my first three months to learn the ropes and be exposed to a variety of experiences at Trinity McQueen.  Being curious, adaptable, learning quickly and enjoying being thrown in all helped.  Having experience of fieldwork, competent moderating skills and the confidence to speak in public and hold your own are important.  I had to learn very quickly in my first few months how to confidently interpret and work with data; this was invaluable.

Who have you turned to for support and advice when you’ve needed it?

My fellow Research Executives and peer group have offered great support.  When looking for promotion, my colleagues immediately above me have offered great advice and I’ve tried to emulate them as much as possible. What you realise is that different people have their own specialisms and you can quickly identify who is best to speak to.

What has been your biggest challenge in your career to date?

What is frustrating for me is if there is something I can’t do.  At the start of my career with Trinity McQueen, I was asked to set up a survey using a methodology I was not completely familiar with.  By asking for help and some coaching in how to approach the project from line manager and the account manager, I developed in this area.  Whilst I felt like a failure at the time, I learnt that you need to ask in order to develop.

What wouldn’t you change about your career?

Working for Trinity McQueen.  There is a great culture with an open and friendly atmosphere.

What would you go back and tell your younger self?

Make sure that you ask lots of questions and be inquisitive.  Relish the opportunities you are given and don’t be complacent.  Take pride in what you do.

What advice would you give to someone wanting to develop their career at Trinity McQueen?

All of the above and you need to be able to work with a variety of people as part of a team.  Pick up work if you have capacity to do so and finally, having a positive attitude is really important!


Chris Handford