#22: Here’s a thought…

September 19, 2009
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An occasional series in which a review of recent posts on SmartData Collective reveals the following nuggets:

Who’s with you on this?

Executive sponsors are the people with enough position and authority to put some weight behind the decision to change. If the executive sponsors do NOT support the change or are on the fence about the change, you have more work to do. Be mindful of their emotions, beliefs, and behaviors and ask yourself if they really understand the need for change and understand their role in the change.

Exceeding those KPI targets
Performance measures reported in scorecards and dashboards is one of the components in the portfolio of integrated performance management rivaling in importance other methodologies such as customer relationship management and managerial accounting. Regardless of the type of KPI, analytics (such as segmentation, predictive modeling, forecasting, design of experiments and mathematical optimization) are ideally embedded in each methodology, and they are critical for employees to achieve and exceed KPI targets.

Evaluating

An occasional series in which a review of recent posts on SmartData Collective reveals the following nuggets:

Who’s with you on this?

Executive sponsors are the people with enough position and authority to put some weight behind the decision to change. If the executive sponsors do NOT support the change or are on the fence about the change, you have more work to do. Be mindful of their emotions, beliefs, and behaviors and ask yourself if they really understand the need for change and understand their role in the change.

Exceeding those KPI targets
Performance measures reported in scorecards and dashboards is one of the components in the portfolio of integrated performance management rivaling in importance other methodologies such as customer relationship management and managerial accounting. Regardless of the type of KPI, analytics (such as segmentation, predictive modeling, forecasting, design of experiments and mathematical optimization) are ideally embedded in each methodology, and they are critical for employees to achieve and exceed KPI targets.

Evaluating outsourcing opportunities
The impact of outsourcing cuts far deeper than merely entering into a transaction with a service provider. Corporate leaders need to focus on their people, processes and technology in tandem when they evaluate and execute their outsourcing opportunities. Experienced outsourcing practitioners often use the “30% rule of thumb” when they evaluate an outsourcing business case: Simply put, if you’re not taking more than 30% of cost from the bottom-line, it’s probably not worth the upheaval to your business.

You want a return when?
What is not clear from the Gartner analysis that I have seen is why you would expect to see instant return on your investment. If you buy a truck for your company you expect it to earn a solid return for you over the future years – not instantly the day you buy it. Isn’t this the same for BI (and any other software) investment. Or am I missing something?

—Steve Bennett: Social Networking and BI

Beyond BI
When you are talking about predictive analytics it is important to understand that this is not the same as talking about business intelligence or even data mining – predictive analytics is about using mathematical techniques to turn uncertainty about the future into usable probabilities. Applying predictive analytic techniques moves you from BI’s focus on knowledge and understanding towards action and prescription – not “what happened” but “what is likely to happen and what should I do about it”. Business intelligence helps you acquire and manage data to understand past or current trends. But predictive insight takes you a step beyond BI, so you can make real-time predictions about the future that can be acted upon in real time to achieve better results.

Gut is in
After all, wouldn’t you rather read about the business executive who had the right hunch and made millions, as opposed to the quant-jock who crunched the numbers and came up with the winning combination? Gut decision making is “in” and for lack of a better word—cool. Some senior executives have alluded there’s a mystique to gut decision making—those who have it have it, and those who don’t will never ascend the ivory tower of business success.

Pricing product complements
You can understand a large portion of technology business strategy by understanding strategies around complements. One major point: companies generally try to reduce the price of their products complements. If you think of the consumer as having a willingness to pay a fixed N for product A plus complementary product B, then each side is fighting for a bigger piece of the pie. This is why, for example, cable companies and content companies are constantly battling. It is also why Google wants open source operating systems to win, and for broadband to be cheap and ubiquitous.