Are Data Analysts More Like Batman or Superman?

August 22, 2011
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Are Data Analysts Like Batman or Superman photo (business intelligence jobs)

Author: Linda Rosencrance
Spotfire Blogging Team

Are Data Analysts Like Batman or Superman photo (business intelligence jobs)

Author: Linda Rosencrance
Spotfire Blogging Team

As we move into the tail end of summer, I figured it’s a good time for a Friday Afternoon Fun Post on superheroes. After all, as data analyst demand and salaries continue to climb, you are likely feeling like a superhero. The question is which one:  Batman or Superman?

Data Analysts are Like Batman

A blogger at the Business Intelligence Reporting Community, believes data analysts have a lot in common with the Caped Crusader because they do their best work in the shadows. And that’s where some feel data analysts are most powerful — behind the scenes. 

You see, Batman is comfortable crunching the numbers and delivering business users the quality analysis needed to make the right decisions. However, he is not comfortable presenting the analysis in public or being praised for it by colleagues, executives or clients.  Instead, Batman works in solitude or as a dynamic duo with his boss who’s ultimately responsible for presenting the analysis to others. Batman works hard, knows his stuff and prefers to remain under the radar. Of course every company dynamic is different and such a superhero may thrive at your company. Batman is certainly a guy who can get things done and save the day.

Data Analysts are Like Superman

However, a perfect storm of BI technology advancements, BI software growth and BI talent shortage means data analysts are more critical to a company’s success and are taking on a more prominent role. Like Superman, more and more data analysts are working out in the open bridging the gap between business data and business insight.   To succeed, they need technical knowledge, business knowledge and people knowledge—talk about Superman. Just having the right data and right analysis isn’t enough. As we pointed out in previous posts, data analysts must also “communicate, persuade, collaborate and work with others.” Sorry Clark Kent, this is no job for you.

To transform into Superman, you have to be a good listener; you have to build consensus; you have to elicit data from groups and most importantly you have to effectively communicate your position to your boss, colleagues and clients. These talents are so critical that soft skill workshops and classes have been organized specifically for analysts.  Yes, Superman is indeed powerful and technically sound but more importantly, he is comfortable and confident working out in the open and collaborating with all kinds of people.

Bottom line, if you continue to gain the technical, business and people knowledge that analysts need to succeed, you will be the Superman or Superwoman for your company. And with such a shortage of BI superheroes suiting up in the coming years, no kyrptonite on earth will be able to immobilize you or your career.

What superhero best represents what you do for your company?