Get Your Superhero On


Who doesn't like recognition for a job well done? Private praise is great, and public acknowledgment is even better.

But in these days of analytics derring-do, those of you out there mining the mounds of data and pulling value out of the chaos deserve something more. You're corporate superheroes, after all, and you ought to be treated as such!

Here's your chance. SAS, this site's sponsor and a business analytics leader, and its enterprise data warehouse partner Teradata have launched a unique campaign to find the analytics superheroes among you. As explained on a newly launched microsite, they're honoring "industry innovators by acknowledging their unique skills managing and analyzing data."

They're bringing together the best and brightest analytics professionals under the League of Analytic Superheroes. The storyline reads straight out of a Marvel comic book (well, one with a business orientation):

Redundant processes vaporize efficiency. Mountains of dirty data blot out the sun. Memories of a once utopian metropolis fade, as the forces of information chaos prevail, and logic slides toward the brink of oblivion. Until one day…
An elegant union of software and hardware begins to organically synthesize new capabilities of speed, strength and agility necessary to conquer confusion with clarity. The forces of evil multiply with each passing hour, as Dr. Insight, the prescient human embodiment of the union of analytics and enterprise data warehousing, reflects on the possible solutions to what may soon be a global epidemic.
As the tale of Dr. Insight’s research spreads, leaders in business analytics and enterprise data warehousing begin assembling a counter-attack against a growing legion of super villains. Intent on maintaining a world of chaos. Battles ensue, and the sheer volume of their villainy renders mute the chorus of the world’s fiercest analytical minds. From a secluded vantage point, high above the city, Dr. Insight is struck with visions of a future illuminated by data. The path to salvation becomes at once self-evident and the siren is sounded -- a call to action for the best and brightest to join the League of Analytic Superheroes.
Enter you, the champions of analytics far and near. SAS and Teradata are looking for you to share your stories and earn the recognition -- adulation, they suggest -- you deserve for your valiant analytics work.

But there's more, and this is the really fun part. They've hired the comic artist Ryan Benjamin to transform League honorees into heroic personas whose "journeys from insurmountable business challenge to actionable business insight [will be] captured and processed into stories commensurate with their Superhero status."

Get this -- League honorees even get their very own action figures. How cool is that?

Apply to be an analytics superhero here, and tell your friends about it, too. Use #AnalyticSuperhero on Twitter, and Like the program on Facebook, too.

And remember:

Before there was a League, before there were heroes to shine a light on meaningful data, there was only… darkness.

SAS and Teradata will announce the first analytics superhero Tuesday, March 13. I can't wait.

Will I see you in the League of Analytic Superheros? Get your nomination in today, and draw attention to your wondrous deeds.

Beth Schultz, Editor in Chief

Beth Schultz has more than two decades of experience as an IT writer and editor.  Most recently, she brought her expertise to bear writing thought-provoking editorial and marketing materials on a variety of technology topics for leading IT publications and industry players.  Previously, she oversaw multimedia content development, writing and editing for special feature packages at Network World. In particular, she focused on advanced IT technology and its impact on business users and in so doing became a thought leader on the revolutionary changes remaking the corporate datacenter and enterprise IT architecture. Beth has a keen ability to identify business and technology trends, developing expertise through in-depth analysis and early adopter case studies. Over the years, she has earned more than a dozen national and regional editorial excellence awards for special issues from American Business Media, American Society of Business Press Editors, Folio.net, and others.

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Data Warehousing
  • 10/26/2013 11:20:59 AM
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Re: More info to the rescue ....
  • 3/14/2012 1:09:34 PM
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Bryan, good point -- nobody wants to see their superhero action figure turned into an executive chew toy!

Re: More info to the rescue ....
  • 3/14/2012 1:02:35 PM
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Beth,

Thanks for posting this - very innovative, trendy and cool!  That being said:

Caveat to potential comic book stars - Before doing this, please consider that you will produce a document that suggests that you saved the day.  Make sure that your boss knows that you are doing this - particularly if your organization has self-identified itself as 'technological agnostic'.  If you publish that your company has a preference for SAS when another analytics vendor had bid to support your company, then expect the lawyers to get lined up outside of your door. 

The bottom line is that this is a wonderful, crazy, exciting way to promote yourself and the value added to your company.  But before you put on your superhero outfit, please be sure that you have a firm grip on the legal context in which your company uses analytic software.  If SAS was selected as part of a competitive bidding process, then this promotion could stir up some hornets.  Even if there is no proof that a success story represents bias in the selection process - you still want to be sure that your butt is covered before you publicly promote a specific vendor as being part of your company's success.  Unfortunately in our litigation-happy society, you can get in trouble for associating software vendors with corporate failures and successes.

More info to the rescue ....
  • 3/8/2012 12:47:20 PM
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SAS & Teradata talked up analytics superhero idea at PAW. Here's more info.

Re: Great storyboard
  • 3/8/2012 2:21:28 AM
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1 saves

Seth, after Digital resume, next may be comic or animated resume with embedded videos.

Re: Great storyboard
  • 3/7/2012 5:27:51 PM
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Interesting to see someone merge comic strip with something otherwise sort of geekish like Analytics. Probably a great way to demystify the field as it should get a lot more IT professionals looking closer.

Re: Great storyboard
  • 3/7/2012 4:05:53 PM
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@SethBreedlove -- it'd certainly be a differentiator, that's for sure. 

Re: Great storyboard
  • 3/7/2012 3:48:12 PM
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Winning this would a great resume tool.  Instead of answering interview questions, you could hand over your comic book and have your interview be your graphic novel. 

Great storyboard
  • 3/7/2012 2:15:16 PM
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Beth, I saw a very cool "storyboard" on this while covering Predictive Analytics World in San Francisco this week. As a matter of fact, look for some video on other storyboards created coming up.

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