Psyma’s New Team Members Attracted by “Smart, Passionate People”

20/11/2017 | en

On paper, Karen Gaule (Psyma’s new Director) and Anna Christensen (Psyma’s new Research Manager) couldn’t be more different. One is more qualitative, one is more quantitative. One is new to Psyma, one is joining for the second time. One has spent years in Marketing Research, the other took a few years in a Marketing position. One is from Michigan, the other is from Texas. One is an empty nester, the other has young children.

But ask them what they like about Marketing Research, and they are completely in agreement: they have a passionate curiosity about people, what makes them tick, and why they do what they do. “Even as a child, I asked too many questions,” laughed Christensen. Gaule agreed, saying, “I love to talk to other people that I might not encounter in my daily life.”

They are also in agreement about why they joined Psyma. “I had heard of Psyma before of course, and when I asked other people who knew about the firm they all said the same thing. This is a team of passionate people who bring excitement and energy to helping solve their clients’ problems. I was thrilled by the opportunity to work with these people to learn new things, and try some new methodologies.” Nodding vigorously, Christensen chimes in, “And smart. Everyone is really, really smart.” Christensen especially knows whereof she speaks: she worked for Psyma previously in Philadelphia. “I didn’t want to leave the company years ago but my husband was re-located to Houston. I missed Psyma every single day I was away. I missed the passion. I missed working with super-smart people. And I was thrilled when the opportunity came up to rejoin the company.”

Gaule and Christensen agree on what makes a good marketing researcher as well. In addition to an insatiable curiosity, they also have a talent for, as well as a need for, telling stories. They love learning new things, as well as being the advocate for their clients. Interestingly, if they had not gone into Marketing Research, Christensen believes she would have been a documentary filmmaker, while Gaule would have become a teacher.

Both Gaule and Christensen are energized and excited about the future of marketing research. “While everyone now is all excited about analytics and Big Data, I don’t think there will ever be a time when marketers won’t need to know the “why” of human behavior.” Christensen agrees, saying “I believe we live in a consumer-driven culture. And as consumer behavior towards brands is changing rapidly, Marketing Research is needed to drive an understanding as well as to predict those changes so businesses can respond effectively.”

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Christensen, who still lives in Houston with her husband, two children, dog and cat, is most likely to be found chasing tricycles when she is not at work. She loves to read and be outdoors doing just about anything. Christensen has moved around a lot (including a stint in London), but earned her B.A. degree in Communications at North Carolina State University, and her M.A. in Advertising at the University of Texas - Austin. 

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Gaule loves anything outdoors: hiking, biking, and camping. She once even built her own snowshoes, sharing the experience with one of her three children. She has a dog who shares her adventures now that her kids are out of the house. She and her husband enjoy the food scene in the growing revitalization of Detroit, sampling all the new restaurants popping up. Gaule has a Bachelor of Business Administration degree from Western Michigan University, with a major in Marketing and minor in Psychology.

Gaule and Christensen are both looking forward to working with the team at Psyma. And there is one more thing they agree on: Marketing Researchers make the best guests at cocktail parties because they always have the most interesting stories to share! Ask Gaule about her work in agricultural tools and Christensen about saving respondents from electrocuting themselves with irons!


Welcome to the Psyma team, Karen and Anna!



US | Detroit

Shannon Sheppard

Vice President

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