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We are witnessing an extraordinary time. We are fully immersed in the digital era that will lead us towards a cultural transformation. The current circumstance takes us out of our comfort zone and we have a lot to gain (and nothing to lose.) We must see data as the big opportunity for changing the paradigm and culture.
May 19, 2021
I'm sure you have heard of the concept of Data Literacy. Gartner describes it as "the ability to read, write and communicate data in context, with an understanding of the sources, the analytical methods and techniques applied, and the ability to describe its application and the resulting business value."
Furthermore, according to Gartner, "By 2023, data literacy will become an explicit and necessary driver of business value, demonstrated by its formal inclusion in over 80% of data and analytics strategies and change management programs."
Speaking the Data Language
As companies grow stronger with diverse teams and new roles emerge, the need to "speak the data language" is greater than ever. Without a common language to interpret the organization's diverse data, there will be fundamental communication problems.
Gartner highlights in its report that the success of a Data-Driven enterprise depends on all employees being information workers who know how to "talk data." Data and Analytics leaders must become change agents focused on the transformative impacts of a Data-Driven culture and adopting a Data Literacy program.
The Data-Driven Ambition
Addressing cultural change within a company is of paramount importance. Data strategy is critical, but if it's not paired with a new organizational mentality, it will be impossible to achieve success.
The Data-Driven approach has to be part of the organization's strategy. It implies a shift from a traditional organizational culture to a data-driven culture, i.e., decision-making is determined by data rather than intuition, experience, or competitors' actions. As we have said on other occasions, intuition can fail, but data is never wrong.
Data strategy is a cultural change that requires transformational leadership. The biggest obstacles to company transformation have a cultural component. The adoption of change by the people affected by it requires specific management that goes beyond technology and talent itself.
It is time to adopt data as a way of thinking and turn it into a new business language. To take immediate action and sustain it. Quick wins build momentum, but lasting and meaningful change takes time because it requires people to learn new skills and behave in new ways.
Gartner, Roadmap for Data Literacy and Data-Driven Business Transformation: A Gartner Trend Insight Report, Alan D. Duncan, 5 October 2020
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