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Guidance and results for the data-rich, yet information-poor.

How Big Data is Like Teen Sex

EverybodyDoingItAn inflammatory headline? Maybe, maybe not.

Think about it.

Everybody talks about big data.

Nobody really knows how to do it.

Everybody thinks everyone else is doing it.

So, everybody claims they are doing it!

In reality, less than 20% of organizations have begun to develop data projects. Those who have completed these projects successfully are in the minority. Even then, many of these organizations are unsure whether to treat that successful project as a spot effort, or whether to make it an enterprisewide concern.

That’s a shame, because data projects do offer significant value. For example, a recent study called How Does Data-Driven Decisionmaking Affect Firm Performance? indicates that, all other factors being equal, organizations who adopt data-driven decision making see 5-6% more output and productivity than organizations who do not adopt data driven decision making.

The disconnect occurs precisely because companies get into a “big data mindset” instead of adopting a mindset which focuses on deriving actionable insight about pressing business problems through predictive analytics.

In truth, “big data” is just an amorphous term. One TMA trainer defines it as, “one byte more than I can efficiently manage in the time allotted.” Thus, what looks like big data today is, in fact, going to look like small data tomorrow. Big data isn’t revolutionary–it’s evolutionary. The business world has the opportunity to manage data more successfully by choosing to realize that.

Keep an eye out for TMA’s newest seminar, “Big Data, Rhetoric and Reality,” if you are interested in exploring these issues a bit further. It’s coming soon, and it will help you navigate your way through a mess of hype so that you can truly extract real value from your organization’s data.

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