Enthusiasm as a basis for a data-driven organization and culture

If you don’t want to miss the boat, you should get started with data. But where do you start? How do you create chaos in the IT spaghetti in your organization? And how do you create one whole from all the data collected in different places? Many organizations struggle with this. For me, that’s where it goes wrong. In the ambition to work data-driven, the focus is (all too) often on implementing and learning new (cloud) technology. We’re trying to shift that focus because data-driven work means nothing if it involves no improvement or is done without a predefined goal. A reliable data foundation, with which you are technically able to extract value from data, is a very important foundation, but the crucial role of employees in this is often forgotten or insufficiently invested in. A positive culture where transparent data shows employees that they contribute optimally for the organization’s goals, is an equally important key to success. I explain why in this blog.

Enthusiasm as a driving force for success

Ultimately, you want to move towards a data-driven organization and culture. It is good to realize that this is not a ‘project’ that you can complete in a few months. It’s a different way of working that you want to get the whole organization excited about. And that’s exactly what it’s all about: enthusiasm is the driving force behind success. This is still too often forgotten. While a project team gets to work with data to do ‘something’ with it, employees watch from the sidelines. They sense that something has to happen, but they don’t know exactly what. Most people by nature do not like change and therefore are not open to it. The challenge therefore lies in getting these people excited. They are – once enthusiastic – the most valuable drivers of change towards data-driven work. Involving the employees in the entire project is essential to make a change succeed. That’s what it’s all about when you take steps towards a data-driven organization.

Bridge between business and IT

In order to do something with data, it is important that you build a bridge between business and IT. It’s easier said than done. The company wants ‘something’ with data and is looking to the IT department to unlock this data. IT often has a lot of work to do with this, for example because different data sources are involved or because there is a data quality problem. This is where things often go wrong: There is too little understanding of the needs and challenges of these two different worlds. The consequence? Away enthusiasm. The data project quickly causes irritations, which then lead to avoidance, so that the project is given little priority and falls into the background. By establishing a smart data organization where both parties are represented, mutual understanding is created, and they will strengthen each other in close cooperation.

Unrealistic expectations

Another big enthusiasm killer is having unrealistic expectations. It is understandable that you would prefer to fix everything down to the smallest detail right away, but it is practically impossible. Creating a fully data-driven organization and culture is about the axis of business administration, IT and change management. If you proceed too quickly, the project becomes so large that it becomes unmanageable. As a result, it quickly snowballs due to the hustle and bustle of everyday life.

Iterative improvement process

It is therefore important to keep the enthusiasm and let the power of this work for you. Because enthusiasm is contagious. You create such a situation by starting with small but visible improvements. Look for a problem that management just can’t put their finger on, the core. Then examine what data is needed for the correct management information and see how you can extract value from this in the short term. Involve employees in all stages of the process. Enthusiasm grows by putting your shoulders to the wheel together and seeing quick results. By not setting the bar too high, the goal is realistic and you avoid getting bogged down in complexity. When a first success is achieved, the colleagues in the organization are inspired. They see the possibilities and the concrete results. The support created in this way forms the basis for structural follow-up steps. And then the ball starts rolling. Are you already excited?

This is a contribution submitted by Hot ITem, part of Conclusion. Via this link you will find more information about the company’s options.

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