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Decision-making is critical for executives, often involving thousands of people or millions of dollars. The key to making decisions you can be proud of – even in times of stress or crisis – are data. This has been true for years. Data management and analysis are central to the overall operation, improvement / growth and identification of variables that play a role in developing your strategy for the future. However, it will be especially important that you take information seriously in 2021.
Related: Why Your Startup Needs Data Science
Identification of metrics
Some metrics (e.g., customer churn) are pretty basic. Exceptional companies, however, identify certain metrics that set them apart from competitors, align with specific objectives, or show what is happening in their industry and in the wider economy. Once you have the data from these types of metrics, you can test things that may seem counterintuitive and work much more objectively. This contributes to agile change that will help you respond to hurdles and keep you relevant for the long haul in the expanding and ever-changing global economy.
Become customer oriented
Psychologically everyone likes to feel heard, wanted and included. When you apply this to businesses and your customers, you can't focus on yourself or make the pursuit of profit vital. Instead, you need to focus on listening to buyers, figuring out what they really prefer or need, and giving them a sense of the insider connection. Profits come as a natural by-product of this process and the relationship that results from it.
As customers get more and more options on where to place their money, making data more customer-centric should be a top priority. Using surveys, demographic, online reviews, and other touchpoints, you can find out how to serve your buyers in incredibly specific ways and predict what they want. This also makes it easier to improve your marketing messages for greater effectiveness between different groups.
As a good example, consider Netflix, which uses customer data to determine which types of shows and movies are the most popular. It then finds and buys similar scripts, assuming if its members like the original style they are likely to like new, similar ones too. This simple, data-driven method has helped Netflix grow its business value by more than $ 50 billion this year as people navigate the COVID-19 pandemic.
Good companies are always responsive to their customers, whether it be processing returns, answering product questions, adding features based on feedback, or something else. But the best companies are proactive, not just reactive. When you collect the right data and analyze it properly, you can actually determine what your buyers want or need (i.e. anticipate trends). The better you do this, the better you can hold out against your competitors – and the easier it becomes to move forward with innovation and design to gain market share early on.
Jeff Bezos is a good example of this point. The market leader at Amazon believes that by identifying customer needs, you can work towards something that doesn't currently exist. This is how you can actually invent the future. This becomes even more important when you consider your business values and ethics. What you do with customer data not only affects how a business is built, but also a specific vision of society and the wider world.
Resilience, productivity and joy
Most organizations want to work lean and remove unnecessary lint. They want high returns at low costs, and they want workers to be happy.
Certain metrics can reveal areas of waste or areas for improvement in order to find out how best to pivot or target your resources. They can also provide information about whether the candidates are a good fit for you or whether the employees are really satisfied.
Successful companies are therefore those who prioritize data in order to define and create positive corporate cultures that generate resilience, productivity and joy. As executives try to navigate the Covid-19 pandemic and remain operational in the face of an increasing number of world problems, data becomes even more valuable for creating inspiring business atmospheres and impressions of security.
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Our ability to collect and interpret data is getting better every day. And because 2021 will bring new and bigger challenges, your best bet for success is to leverage information with every handy tool you have. Decide what is most relevant, analyze with transparency, and then move forward with confidence.