MFour Profile: Ashley Hightower, Client Services
As a Client Services Lead, Ashley Hightower oversees project management and fielding efforts within the Core/Tracker business unit in the Operations department. Outside of work, Ashley loves to play board and video games and has been finding inspiration from YouTube painting videos as she learns how to paint in both watercolor and acrylics! She also enjoys environmental activism and can’t wait for it to be cold and rainy again so she can enjoy her favorite weather.
How did you hear about MFour?
A friend who worked for MFour shared great stories about their experience so when I saw that a role had opened for the client services team, I was immediately drawn to it.
What did you do prior to MFour?
I started my career as an Account Manager. It was a great experience that taught me a lot about corporate business and it’s where I met my spouse, so it worked out serendipitously for me! Ultimately, I decided that I wanted to be more involved in team support, so the role of a Project Manager at MFour seemed like the perfect fit knowing that I’d have a full team of dedicated PMs and SPMs to assist.
What does a Client Services Lead do?
I support the Core and Tracker business unit with process updates, new initiatives, and existing project management. I’m also a go-to resource for the tracker methodology, the IHUT methodology, and client-related questions on existing projects.
What is your favorite MFour Studio feature?
The combination of visualizing behavioral AND survey data is by far my favorite! I’m excited to see these capabilities work together to inform our client’s business objectives. In Operations, we’re very comfortable seeing how individual survey projects answer for customer business questions so it will feel fresh to see those questions solved for using MFour Studio.
What do you enjoy most about working with clients?
All clients are different, so I really enjoy the variety in relationship building. End clients are usually my favorite because MFour can help drive how the research is utilized but other market research firms are great to work with as well.
How has your role changed since you started at MFour?
I was originally hired as a Project Manager for the brand-new Tracker BU within Client Services. I took on several large complex trackers and because of my relationship building with bigger clients I was promoted to Senior PM. A little over two years into my role, I had the opportunity to apply to become a manager. I love that I get to be a mentor resource and support my team when problems arise. Problems are inevitable but it’s always more fun when I get to address a problem as a group think exercise rather than a team member feeling stuck in a troubleshooting loop. Two heads are better than one!
What do you like most about working at MFour?
The PEOPLE! Shout out to Ops for being incredible human beings that I feel incredibly lucky and grateful to work with. But throughout the company in Sales, Research Strategy, Product, Marketing, and HR, we have quite the talented group of high potential employees. I am aware how lucky I am to say I have friends as colleagues!
What qualities best reflect your team?
My team is supportive and super collaborative. Ops really tries to help each other as best we can and that is especially true on the Core/Tracker BU. During high volume weeks/months we do a lot of task sharing to help mitigate everyone’s workloads. Very grateful for the teamwork at MFour especially within Operations.
What time of day are you most productive?
Definitely the mornings! I prefer to get all my hardest tasks done at the start of the day so I can focus on ad-hoc project requests in the second half of the day when tasks are a bit more urgent and unplanned.
What advice do you have for others looking to start a career in customer service?
Be willing to be wrong even if you’re right. Sometimes clients don’t understand all of what we’re recommending but that’s okay because it really doesn’t matter. What matters is that we listen to the clients’ needs and accommodate to the best of our ability. If a client tells us we’re wrong (regardless of if they’re misunderstanding) we just need to come to them with collaboration, patience, and most importantly alternatives.
If you’re interested in joining our team, we’re hiring! Take a look at our job openings.