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Associate Strategist

at Forward
New York, NY

Last updated January 2022

Click here to download a PDF copy of the Associate Strategist job listing

Ready to apply? Please email us at hello@alwaysbeforward.com, or apply using the form at the bottom of this page.

Who we are

Forward is an insights-driven brand consultancy based in New York City. We’re qualitative researchers, cultural thinkers, and brand and business strategists, working to implement empathetic, future-facing strategies for our (mostly) corporate clients.

We work on engaging briefs spanning all kinds of questions about people and culture, from an exciting client roster that includes Diageo, Jordan, Spotify, L'Oréal, PepsiCo, Nike, YouTube, and Disney.

And now, we’re looking for a Associate Strategist to join our growing team.

The role

The Associate Strategist role exists to support teams in all stages of projects (briefing, proposing, setup, fielding, analysis, writing, and delivering/presenting) while learning the requirements and nuances of Forward’s culture, processes, offerings, and clients. Associates Strategists are expected to grow into Strategist roles where one plays a more central role in executing projects.

Specifically, Associate Strategists excel when they confidently and consistently deliver on the five areas below:

Owning the organizational aspects of projects – Organization is an integral part of both client management and project output – we see our skill in this realm as a key differentiating factor, and one that you would be largely responsible for owning. Key to success here is thoughtful, proactive, and sound management and communication of project logistics, including:
    • owning project timelines, schedules, check-ins, meeting prep, calendar invites, and file management
    • partner coordination (recruiters, event spaces, freelancers, Forward team schedules)
    • screener creation and execution alongside recruitment partners
    • executing network, expert, and influencer recruiting

Assisting in writing business-winning proposals – We aim to set ourselves apart from our peers and the industry, beginning with our proposals. All members of the Forward team are expected to contribute to creating breakthrough, business-winning proposals, including Associate Strategists. Your contribution to these proposals may include:
    • conducting background research on a potential clients’ company, category, or target consumer
    • writing and designing slides for the proposal
    • gathering supporting case studies
    • and more!

Supporting consumer and cultural research – Our approach to consumer and cultural research sets us apart from traditional consultancies and market research vendors, and the success of this research hinges on its execution. As an Associate Strategist, you will be tasked with contributing to, and ensuring the successful execution of, all types and phases of research. This may include:
    • setting up and conducting digital research
    • notetaking, filming, and recording during discussion groups and interviews
    • executing cultural analysis
    • and more!

Contributing to analysis and debrief writing – Our analysis and debriefs are ultimately what provide the most lasting value to clients. All Forward team members are expected to have a point of view, and to play a direct role in the shaping and creation of the final story. Your role in contributing to analysis and debrief writing may include:
    • playing a proactive role in analysis (coming prepared, offering thinking and proof points from culture/the research, taking notes)
    • collaborating to create breakthrough, strategic frameworks
    • sharing responsibility for writing and designing exciting, compelling debriefs that mirror, and level-up, Forward’s style of written and visual storytelling
    • copyediting and image sourcing
    • creating and managing other client-facing project deliverables (video, printed materials, exhibitions)

Delivering excellent client service – We pride ourselves on cultivating strong, ongoing relationships with repeat clients. From day one, all members of the FWD team are client-facing, and so we ask that all Associate Strategists demonstrate strong communication skills and punctuality, and bring a positive attitude to all client interactions


First and foremost, we’re looking for Associate Strategists who are genuinely passionate about people and culture – who feel energized by meaty cultural questions, like how is masculinity changing? or what does true crime tell us about America circa 2021? We care just as much about applicable experience as we do about curiosity, empathy, diligence, and kindness.

We’ve done our best to create a warm, casual, and accepting space where employees can bring their whole selves to work, and we’d hope you’d feel comfortable reciprocating – telling us about your weird after-hours habits, or about that incredible restaurant you tried over the weekend.

Beyond the above, all applicants must…

  • have ~1-year of relevant professional experience and / or applicable internships in research, insights, branding, strategy, and / or advertising
  • have strong verbal and written communication skills
  • feel comfortable navigating Zoom, Slack, and the Microsoft suite
  • be based in the New York City area (or willing to relocate)
  • be open to occasional work travel, once this becomes possible again

If you’re interested in applying, please introduce yourself and send your resume to hello@alwaysbeforward.com, or apply using the form below. We look forward to hearing from you!