What happens when you mix a chemistry teacher with a sense of adventure and an insatiable appetite for research? You get the creation of an award-winning research company, of course.
Founded in 1999, TWI Surveys Inc. was the culmination of 20 years field-testing and developing research tools, survey processes, and communication best practices.
The journey began when Tudor Williams left England to “see the world.” His starting place: teaching high school in central Canada. Little did he know, the world ended up being Canada.
Never one to turn down an adventure, Tudor left the teaching profession and joined Syncrude in 1975. His task: attract the top engineering minds to a relatively unknown mining and oil production town — Fort McMurray. It’s one thing to bring in top talent; it’s another to keep it. So, he was asked to design a communication plan to retain these young, smart engineers.
With research in his nature, Tudor explored how the world’s best companies were attracting and retaining their employees. What he discovered was these companies were surveying their employees to see what their needs were. He conducted the first employee engagement survey at Syncrude in 1978.
This was the beginnings of TWI Surveys. During his years at Syncrude, Tudor used research in its many varieties — surveys, focus groups, interviews — as the foundation for creating communication plans, employee engagement processes, and talent management strategies.
With the advent of the Internet and email communication, Tudor seized the opportunity to do research online — other companies had not yet made the move. Teaming up with his son, Ryan, he set out to create a way to do surveys online. In 1998, TWI was founded. One year later, the company became a pioneer in online research and surveys.
Research doesn’t just inform decisions, the process of research and surveys involves people in the decisions that we make. Surveys are tools that allow us to connect people and start a dialogue — a group can see what they’re saying as a collective, where they agree, and where they disagree. Essentially, a survey is a big conversation. Done well, research and surveys serve as critical pieces in our communication process.
Over the last 15 years, TWI has established itself as one of the best full service research and communications companies. It has worked with organizations of all shapes and sizes, from Fortune 500 companies to local non-profits to government bodies.
In 2011, TWI took hold of another opportunity by partnering with Tekara Organizational Effectiveness. With over 30 years of experience in the communications field, TWI recognized the behaviours of leaders and employees either build influence and trust or they undermine it. By marrying communications and organizational development, TWI is now capable of helping clients truly become influencers.