FEATURE7 July 2023

Gale Blears – research hero

Features People

The Market Research Society launched the Research Heroes programme to celebrate the sector’s unsung heroes. Gale Blears has joined the cadre of Research Heroes 2023.


Gale Blears, Director, viewpoint

Gale was a computer programmer for an oil company and in 1986 she became an interviewer with Taylor Nelson, then in 1996 she joined Viewpoint as a field exec.  In 2007, Gale became Managing Director and stepped aside two years ago to work as a part time consultant for Viewpoint and full-time carer for her two grandsons aged 13 and 14.

Gale was nominated because "when the companies that bought Viewpoint ‘floundered’ for a variety of reasons, she stuck with the company and fought very hard to keep it going, even investing a significant amount of her own money to do so. That Viewpoint still exists and is indeed thriving, is almost entirely down to her energy and drive." 

What is the biggest challenge you have faced during your career?

Following on from a sale in 2010 which resulted in insolvency three years later, I brought Viewpoint back from the ashes, retaining all staff and most of our suppliers. I couldn’t have done this without the support of Cris Tarrant and Richard Sheldrake and our loyal employees and recruiters.

It was a tough ride with many tears shed. 

What will be the next big trend or development in the research industry, and why?

Online panels to become even more sophisticated and accurate as they will need to revamp all their software to ensure participants are human beings and not using ChatGPT thus leading to more decline in F2F qual.

Who inspires you as a researcher?           

Richard Sheldrake. He started as a telephone interviewer and went on to become an MD of a reputable data collection agency, he also set up a very successful online company and become a Fellow of the MRS. He’s unique and as genuine a person that you could find.

View the full list of Research Heroes 2023