I’m sure there are few out there but based on what our clients are telling us I can’t imagine that there are many Boards of Directors that haven’t recently talked about data. With security issues on the forefront of everyone’s mind and the risks inherent in not adequately plugging data vulnerabilities, every Board has had their wake up call.
Managing the downside is only one side of the coin. There is also great opportunity to be found in the data of digital disruption and using data to drive strategic, profitable growth. Studies have shown that organizations that have already transformed themselves through data continue to get better at using data faster than all the others. The leaders are still increasing their leads. Where there is the opportunity for revolutionary data use, there is also the possibility of being left in the dust. For every WalMart and Uber there’s a Sears and Yellow Cab company.
For this reason, more than any other, Boards need to see data as the means to cross-enterprise improvement. For better market penetration, use your data. For greater operational efficiency, look to your data. For lower risk or reduced fraud or stronger service, create a data framework that will give you both utility and knowledge. We are entering into an explosive period of data availability from outside the organization. If we use it well, it will yield new insights that will make today’s decision-making look like the punch-card era.
Though these data conversations are started at the highest levels they must be continued and fostered at every level. In coming weeks we will be looking at the opportunities and consequences of data conversations — where to start, what to avoid, building a data culture and understanding data’s true value to your organization. I hope you’ll join the discussion.