Working Wednesdays: Being Part of a Focus Group in Northern Ireland

If you’ve followed the blog from the early days, you’ll know I covered my job history on here as I did it, especially the farming and bar work. Yet the Working Wednesdays feature still has at least 50 jobs I’ve done and not yet written about, so in an attempt to eventually get this blog up to date, I’ll cover a few more.

Working Wednesdays: Being Part of a Focus Group in Northern Ireland

Working Wednesdays: Being Part of a Focus Group in Northern Ireland

I’m a big fan of working in bulk, getting money when you can. I don’t say no, I don’t turn down offers – give me the money, I’ll work for it and then on you go. In 2003, I was in my hometown of Bangor in Northern Ireland and I was doing a load of different jobs in my last 2 years there – I did bar work in McMillens, I worked for the Halifax Building Society, I worked at AMA, I sorted envelopes, I did temporary work with Grafton Recruitment, I delivered phone books, I tried to be a postman (and failed) and I spent a lot of time in the local shop and butchery – Steenson’s Ballyholme. But I needed to have more money to take with me on my upcoming adventure to Bournemouth in England.

The Marine Court Hotel in Bangor, Northern Ireland

The Marine Court Hotel in Bangor, Northern Ireland

The opportunity came up in my last month to be part of a “focus group”. They get people together from different demographics together for a few hours and you get paid £50. Plus you get free tea and coffee and snacks. Bonus? Totally right – count me in.

Working Wednesdays: Being Part of a Focus Group in Northern Ireland

Working Wednesdays: Being Part of a Focus Group in Northern Ireland

The thing is though, I actually enjoyed this focus group. It was all about Northern Irish society – I made friends with a girl from it too – Sarah. It was held at the Marine Court Hotel in Bangor, Northern Ireland and was organised by RES, a Research Group, which stood for Research and Evaluation Services. On my return home to Northern Ireland recently, I have been going through some old boxes as my family try to downsize and move to a new house, so it was time for me to scrummage through my old memories and keep what I needed.

Sadly, RES no longer exist and the opportunity for this money from research groups is harder to find these days.

Be busy, work hard, don’t say no – my top tips on backpacking the world.

Working Wednesdays: Being Part of a Focus Group in Northern Ireland

Working Wednesdays: Being Part of a Focus Group in Northern Ireland

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4 thoughts on “Working Wednesdays: Being Part of a Focus Group in Northern Ireland

  • Hi Agness, We’re both the same type of people, that’s why. We keep busy and work hard and it pays dividends. I’m sure we will work on something together sometime, it’s just tough when we are geographically distanced and busy ourselves. Safe travels. Jonny

  • Hi Ray, this one was easy as I enjoyed it. Internations was harder work as I needed to talk to people non stop. The issue for me is “what do you class as a job and what is not a job?”. In which case editing and producing football fanzines for Northern Ireland in the 1990s/early 2000s was probably the easiest job as it’s a passion and I’ve done it for free as well as earning out of it. Plus I managed a rock band once, again, easy as I was passionate about it. Safe travels. Jonny

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