Meet Maury Giles, our Chief Growth Officer! Maury has a long and storied career in market research, but his most notable accomplishments are tearing up the dance floor with his wife at the company holiday party, painting a large giraffe that hung honorably in SparkRoom at company HQ for many years, and designing market research that involves respondents playing with LEGO bricks and/or Play-Doh. But here’s the real skinny on the man, the myth, the legend: Maury Giles.
Q: Describe what you do in 5 words or less.
A: Reveal human truths for progress.
Q: When you were a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
A: As a young man I will never forget watching Carl Lewis compete and dreaming that one day I would be an Olympic athlete. I was certain of it. I also developed a plan for the “Good News Network” with my best friend when we were 8 years old. We even published our first newspaper edition of the GNN and shared it with family and friends that same summer. It was the beginning of what I believed growing up would be a career in broadcast journalism.
Q: When did you know you wanted to be a research consultant?
A: In a grad school political communications course we were studying the 1984 Reagan/Mondale campaign and we reviewed a “Wirthlin Report” about the research used to inform and develop the strategy. I knew that day that I would work for Dick Wirthlin and figure out how to be a consultant in that space. It took a year, but I took off to DC to work for Wirthlin. The rest is history!
Q: Your dream research project is…
A: When it comes to my dream projects or client engagements, for some reason I have always craved the hard stuff. Complexity brings a challenge that expands the mind. The perfect assignment, then, would be when the difficulty factor is quite high AND the campaign/effort is focused on critical societal issues looking for systemic change.
Q: What drew you to Heart+Mind Strategies?
A: I had worked with Mike and Dee at Wirthlin for over 10 years in the early days of my career, so after building out Strategy3 for Ipsos, and when I felt I needed to get closer to clients doing compelling work, I knew it was time to join back up with them and other former Wirthlin colleagues.
Q: You’re secretly really good at…
A: Coaching youth sports and officiating high school football! This passion of mine is what I refer to as my “high-stress stress relief” escape 3-4 months out of the year. Most recently I have been coaching my daughter’s tackle football team.
Q: The quality you most admire in others is…
A: Integrity in the face of adversity. People who consistently remain true to a North Star and travel the higher road in life have a perspective that lifts up other people and society.
Q: What do you like to do in your free time?
A: In my free time, I love spending time with my family, reading, exercise, yardwork, home projects. I also love volunteering: CASA, state licensing boards, political initiatives, local school community councils, school district committees, etc.
Q: What is your current obsession?
A: My current passion is systemic change to our voting process in the United States. We have a system that is producing divisiveness and preventing governance due to the incentives driven by a two-party system. We need innovative approaches to motivate parties and candidates to exercise leadership in solving current issues rather than marshalling resources to destroy the other party at all costs.
Q: Do you have any pets?
A: Two rambunctious and hilarious dogs: Holly is a labradoodle and her partner in crime is younger Dakota a very energetic boy goldendoodle.
Q: What question are you dying to answer that we haven’t asked?
A: What is the secret to happiness in life?
Q: What’s the answer?
A: Perspective. You can’t choose what comes your way, but you can always position yourself to put things in perspective.