FEATURE4 July 2022

Adam Overell – Research Hero

Features People

The Market Research Society launched the Research Heroes programme to celebrate the sector’s unsung heroes. Adam Overell has joined the cadre of Research Heroes 2022.

Adam Overell, Chief People Officer, Behaviorally


Adam serves as Behaviorally’s chief people officer, bringing more than 15 years of experience managing people, processes and projects in various industry verticals. He is responsible for supporting the global teams, empowering and equipping all staff through development and training to meet corporate and individual goals. His responsibilities also include the company’s legal and corporate compliance through good governance and global environmental, social and governance efforts.

Originally from Australia, Adam previously worked in project implementation and execution in commercial construction, facing the day-to-day challenges of managing hundreds of staff members all while ensuring budget, safety standards and delivery milestones were met.

Adam was nominated for the concern he showed his colleagues which went “above and beyond not just at a professional level, but also on a personal human level”. For example, “when his colleagues were unable to drive themselves to get their vaccines, Adam himself took time out of his day to drive each of them to their appointments”. 

What is the biggest challenge you have faced during your career?
Covid-19, simple as that. Literally overnight we had to pivot and create a totally remote working environment for our staff, and a means to continue conducting research on behalf of our clients without relying on face-to-face data collection. The safety of our staff was paramount, along with compliance with national, regional and local regulations. 

But the next priority was to overcome logistical, technical and operational hurdles so that the research results we continued deliver throughout the pandemic were reliable and efficacious for our clients. Thankfully, our transition to a digital-first approach for our research methodologies was well along, so we had a plan, even if it needed to be accelerated. We are proud that the skills and lessons we learned facing this challenge continue to enable us to be agile and responsive to our clients’ evolving needs. 

What will be the next big trend or development in the research industry, and why?
We all talk about artificial intelligence (AI) and tech, which are ‘table stakes’, really. They enable efficiency and speed in the delivery of results and allow us to analyse larger and larger existing data sets to uncover insights. But those which emerge as leaders in the next generation of researchers will be the agencies who successfully marry AI and technology with a true understanding of human behaviour and expertise in specific industry segments. This is our North Star and we pursue it to achieve a single goal: to help clients achieve value in their marketing, and impact outcomes when it counts: the moment of the purchase transaction.

Who inspires you as a researcher? 
It may be a cliché to say it, but it’s not one individual, but rather the entire team here at Behaviorally. By working together and drawing on collective levels of dedication, enthusiasm, and competency, the team collectively deliver impactful results to clients that drive more valuable transactions. 

The researchers tend to be the face of Behaviorally, but they will tell you that it is the combination of their efforts and those behind the scenes in operations, tech, innovation and our administrative functions who enable Behaviorally to continue to serve and delight clients. My role as chief people officer is to support them all, because I know that fundamentally it is our people who make our brand promise a reality.  

View the full list of Research Heroes for 2022