In 1988, Gordon Hooper co-founded Bateleur with a deep desire to find out what people think. His father, a doctor of humble origins, indirectly schooled him in human empathy. This; he embraced a three-pronged guiding principle to soft skill has proven invaluable in running his business. Gordon attributes his success to his father's advice main true to his ambitions – availability, affability, and ability (in that order). He also believes in opening new doors for people and companies and has dedicated his energy to nurturing the growth of his employees.
Fresh out of school, Kim-Lee De Vries joined Bateleur in 2009 and was appointed a director and shareholder in 2017. Boasting a robust work ethic, unwavering passion and dedication to the business, Kim-Lee has a keen eye for taking complex data and distilling it into uncomplicated and easily digestible visual insights. She is fascinated by the plethora of topics covered in this industry and values the continuous learning that the business of research and brand planning offers. She particularly enjoys the freedom to be creative in her role, as well as being exposed to how people think and make decisions.
Michelle started at Bateleur in 2009 and has worked her way up from the editing and coding department to a director. Today, she has a well-developed understanding of almost every aspect of the company and its functions.Drawn by the culture of the company, Michelle quickly discovered that Bateleur was not an ordinary workplace. She shares how the team all get along and work well together.She works well under pressure, enjoys creating meaningful relationships, loves interacting with field members and networks and believes that market research satisfies her curiosity. She sees research as a perfect fit for her personality as she’s always been an inquisitive person.Research has taught her that South Africa is a very diverse country and that each culture is unique and intricate.The biggest influence in Michelle’s career is her dad; he taught her that you can do anything you set your mind to with a bit of determination and courage. As a result, she lives by the following guiding principle, “don’t ever say you can’t do it, there is always a way, you just need to breathe and think about it.”
While studying Bachelor of Arts Honours in Psychology, Talya discovered her passion for research. In 2016, she decided to take a year off from psych to work in research, which is when she started at Bateleur and never looked back. Talya’s degree in psychology compliments her career very well, as the purpose of research is to find out what people think; psychology is founded on the thoughts, perceptions and behaviour of people. She describes the Bateleur team as an extended family, something she feels distinguishes the company from its competitors. This is felt by the clients, too. Talya prides herself on being honest, trustworthy, respectful and reliable. She is guided by a principle inspired by Oprah Winfrey, “Real integrity is doing the right thing, knowing that nobody’s going to know whether you did it or not”. Serving as a mentor to junior researchers, Talya has uncovered another passion where she’s able to cultivate and nurture talented young, up-and-coming individuals who have the potential to thrive in this exciting industry.