Companies today are swimming in data — with no shortage of tools and technology — but many still struggle to put data to work successfully. As author Randy Bean writes, “The greatest barrier to data success today is business culture, not lagging technology.” To achieve a winning data strategy, companies need to evolve and shift thinking around what it means to have a data-driven culture.
It’s understandable why companies want to go back to “business as usual,” but our new normal is undeniably abnormal — and pretending otherwise can do real damage. This fraught moment requires empathy, grace, flexibility, and support; driving toward normal business targets bulldozes over our collective loss, uncertainty, and grief.
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In the current pandemic, many companies are stepping up to help out — but the main concern isn’t whether companies should contribute, but how.
MIT artificial intelligence researcher Regina Barzilay was recently named the inaugural recipient of an award honoring an individual developing or promoting AI for the good of society. Barzilay focused her attention on health and medicine after being successfully treated for breast cancer in 2014. This past June, her mammogram data was crunched to assess her breast cancer risk; the reassuring forecast used a deep learning model she’d designed herself.
COVID-19 has short-circuited many processes that companies rely on to operate effectively and make decisions across the globe. To carry forward, leaders need to rethink how and where work gets done and create a balance between global best practices and local adaptability.
What Else We’re Reading This Week
- For 65 years, Rand Corp.’s reference book A Million Random Digits With 100,000 Normal Deviates was the go-to source for random numbers — until one engineer found an error
- To drive major change, companies must link data quality and data science
- Ten best practices for analytics success
Quote of the Week:
“Crises can be challenging not only because they paralyze workers psychologically by removing a sense of security, but more pragmatically because they undermine workers’ ability to do their jobs and to achieve their goals in the short term.
“Paradoxically, relaxing the focus on outcomes and investing more in cultivating positive relationships and learning offers a pathway for organizations to achieve those very outcomes.”
— Eliana Crosina, assistant professor of entrepreneurship at Babson College, in “Disrupted and Stronger: Looking In and Looking Out”