What are the primary skill sets you bring as a consultant?
Although my training is that of an applied researcher, I also occupy a space that is likely more in line with a modern notion of data science than that of traditional research. This has given me an incredibly broad exposure to different statistical methods and different ways to answer questions. I do not come at issues like a “consultant,” a “Psychologist,” or a “researcher,” but purely as a scientist. All of my work is reproducible (i.e., everything is documented and nothing happens “on the fly,” so there is never a question about what was done). Data collection is also one of my specialties – from paper to web to mobile and all points in-between, I can get the data that an organization needs so that we can answer the important questions.
What’s your favorite part about being a consultant?
The best part of being a consultant is getting to work on different projects. Every client/project has unique needs and it is my responsibility to merge my knowledge with those needs, while picking up some domain specific knowledge on the way.
What do you see as the number one reason an organization should consider an external consultant?
Skills. Many organizations, especially smaller ones, do not have the necessary personnel to adequately engage in research – a free account for a web-based survey program does not mean that a person knows how “to survey,” let alone do research.
What do you see as the single largest difficulty organizations face?
Internal myopia. Decision-makers developer hyper-focus and lose the ability to see (and consider) viable alternatives. This also drives them hastily implement a solution, without really knowing where the kinks lay.
What fictional organization would you most want to consult for?
There are so many good ones, but I would probably pick Jefferson Cleaners; the dry-cleaning industry is long overdue for some good organizational research. Omni Consumer Products would probably be a very close second and maybe more in-line with my skills.
If you were a consulting superhero, what would your power be and how would you use it?
This is a tough question, because the modern toolkit gives us so much power already. If I had to pick one, though, I suppose my power would be uncanny efficiency – every line of code would be perfect, the first model would always be the best, every row of data would be perfectly clean and complete, and every answer would be perfectly clear.
What do you do outside of work?
I spend time with my family, engage in all sorts of odd projects and hobbies, and learn new things. After everyone else is in bed, I find myself working on something to throw up to my GitHub page – https://github.com/saberry -- or engaging in any matter of statistical computing shenanigans.
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