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Tory Gentes Tells Secrets

Posted By Susan Abbott, Abbott Research & Consulting, Wednesday, March 9, 2016
Updated: Wednesday, March 9, 2016

We interviewed Tory Gentes about why she is excited about speaking in Vienna. Here's what she told us. Tory is a past winner of QRCA's Young Professionals Grant.


I feel extremely fortunate to have had the opportunity to join the QRCA community which started after receiving the Young Professionals Grant for the past conference in Orlando, Florida.

As a young person in the field of qualitative research, I have especially appreciated having access to a community of people who understand the non-traditional life and path into market research. I’m sure many can relate, but qualitative research was not a discipline readily offered or even mentioned by my University. My initial exposure came back in 2011 while I was a student studying entrepreneurship and pursuing my own start-up.

I will forever be grateful that Daniel Berkal answered my email I sent back on March 18th, 2011. In search of companies who might offer advice on my business plan, my random Google search returned about 20 companies and The Palmerston Group was the only one to respond. The rest is history as I have since worked on projects with The Palmerston Group for over 5 years.  

"We are so excited to share how we turned our passion project into real insights that can be used by other market researchers"

As I’ve learned, some of the best researchers might not be traditionally trained, rather they have a unique combination of inter-personal skills, self-awareness, and intense world curiosity. This is a world that allows me to continue being a student who asks questions, channels insights, and has an insatiable desire to understand the world around me.

Our topic was formed from an initial seed of curiosity and it grew with the idea to drive across country asking a simple question, “tell me a secret.” The project was then put into motion after a simple conversation of “Should we do this? Actually drive across country?” and the response, “why not?!”  We are so excited to share how we turned our passion project into real insights that can be used by other market researchers. For transformation to take place, individuals must feel something. Our presentation will help people connect with something in themselves that they can directly use to transform the work they do everyday. 

I am personally excited about the format of this conference. As I understand the group will move through different speakers together instead of forming breakout sessions. I think there’s intense power in having us stay as a group together. This offers a different dynamic than choosing breakout sessions and also eliminates the fear of “the right choice.” 

Tory Gentes and Daniel Berkal are presenting "Why Exploring Secrets Will Make You Question Everything."

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