Is your company really data-driven? Or, is it simply obsessed with numbers?

The other day I was speaking with a leader about bringing my Rethinking Data workshop into her organization.  Before I could get too far she stopped me.  She said, “Brad, we don’t need your workshop. We are a heavily data-driven organization.”  Then, to back up her statement, she showed me several “data-rich” presentations and reports. The presentations contained… (read more)

Metrics may represent reality, but they aren’t reality

The Midwest is bracing for some cold weather. Forecasts around the Chicago area predict some of the coldest temperatures in Chicago’s history (at least in the history of recorded temperatures). As Chicagoans gear up for the cold, the “old timers” are rolling their eyes. They tell us that while our forecasted -55 wind chill is cold,… (read more)

Don’t get fooled by rigor and precision – they might be masking reality

There is an old saying that what you measure is what you get. The problem is that what you’ve got isn’t always what you measure. In other words, there might be things falling below the radar simply because you aren’t measuring them. There is a simple example of this in the book Jurassic Park. The island… (read more)

Help! My metrics/data don’t match my observations and experiences! Now what?

I recently read a quote from Jeff Bezos where he said that when anecdotal data and quantitative data don’t match, usually the quantitative is wrong. I thought that was interesting. However, it’s an issue that many of us deal with on a regular basis. It’s hard to trust cold impersonal numbers when what you see with your… (read more)

Facts are not insights

The other day I noticed that my LinkedIn mobile app had a section that provided “Insights” about my account: Nine people have viewed me that week Nine viewers found me from someone similar to me Two viewers were from Bloomington/Normal, IL Seven viewers have the title Human Resources Specialist Six viewers are from the Professional training and… (read more)