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Data Analyst: Does Everybody Need To Be One?
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D. Henschen
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D. Henschen,
User Rank: Author
1/29/2015 | 6:04:49 PM
Re: Simple answer
That "analytical culture" is the really hard part. In my view it can't be purely bottom up or top down. Collaboration is key. Facebook has talked about a blended structure, with analytics leaders embedded within lines of business but also reporting up to a centralized analytics leader, so the organization avoids duplicative projects and everyone can learn from successes and failures pursued by inidividual business units. Analytics leaders in business units could help teams and individuals with best practices for dashboards and reports and making available trusted data.
Joe Stanganelli
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Joe Stanganelli,
User Rank: Author
1/29/2015 | 9:50:31 PM
Priorities
Mamet put it best: "The boat needs to look like a boat.  The sail doesn't need to look like a boat."
Susan_Nunziata
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Susan_Nunziata,
User Rank: Strategist
1/31/2015 | 10:41:05 PM
Re: Simple answer
@pfretty949: Developing the kind of analytical culture you're talking about is easier said than done. I've seen many bad business decisions made by people who felt they had the "right" data to support their preconceived notions without recognizing that they were injecting their own biases. Or, perhaps they DID recognize this and it was precisely the point. Nobody likes to hear that the data doesn't support their goals or strategies. A lot of education will be needed to create a truly sustainable analytical culture in any organization.
Joe Stanganelli
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Joe Stanganelli,
User Rank: Author
2/3/2015 | 2:53:39 AM
Re: Simple answer
@Susan: Reminds me of Moneyball (one of my favorite books ever).  An entire culture infused with "old thinking" by the same people shuffled around from organization to organization regardless of actual performance, threatened and disrupted by people who actually thought to look at the numbers.

One of my favorite anecdotes from that book involves a telling of a sabremetrician's analysis of how a stadium remodel will impact a particular team (I think it was the Houston Astros, but I forget because it's been so long since I've read the book).  His findings: "Sorry, if you make these changes, you lose more games."  His study was highly controversial in the organization and was buried, instead of acted upon -- because upper management had already decided that they wanted to make the proposed stadium changes so that there would be more homeruns and thus cause more excitement for fans.


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