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A2014: Analytics & Business, a Natural Partnership
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Re: We need to talk more
  • 10/28/2014 11:16:00 AM
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James, the short informal chats are powerful as they tend to cover or clarify points often missed in the scheduled meetings. Besides it keeps everyone engaged and promotes open access.

Re: We need to talk more
  • 10/28/2014 10:45:39 AM
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@rbaz. Right, there's no need for hard rules in terms of analytics/client conversations. You have to go with what feels right for the individuals and the project. Having been on the client side, less than once a week wouldn't feel right to me. Daily might be too often.

However, what probably is more important than the frequency is the nature and scale of the meeting. I can't imaging two or three meetings a week involving the whole analytics team and all of the stakeholders, reviewing every fine point. Ugh!

More likely would be frequent less formal conversations: "We're thinking of trying this..." "Have you considered that...." "How soon do you need X?"

Some people call them "drive by" meetings. I've found over time that a lot can be accomplished in a short time.

 

Re: We need to talk more
  • 10/26/2014 4:01:10 PM
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Right on, rbaz; a hard rule for meeting frequency on all analytics projects is silly and naive. Meet as often as the stakeholders need to stay current and move things forward. The rest is just noise.

Re: We need to talk more
  • 10/26/2014 3:56:39 PM
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In my experience, a combination of meeting and an internal blog or wiki seems to work the best.

Re: We need to talk more
  • 10/26/2014 3:55:27 PM
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An internal blog isn't a bad suggestion, tomsg. My own experience is that signal-to-noise ratio on those things is so high that it's easy to miss critical communications or turns of events. Meetings, in-person or teleconferenced, at least require some sort of personal acknowledgement from the various shareholders. 

data analytics in business colleges
  • 10/26/2014 11:35:15 AM
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I totally agree. I decided to approach this by training business students to do analytics. They can do a lot on their own. For more complex situations, they will be equipped to talk to the speciallists and extremely good at communicating the business needs and the strategic relevance of the results of analyses.

My colleagues and I also started a business data analytics major for our B.S.B.A. degree. It was the first undergraduate major of its kind in our state. There are still not many like it nationwide. These students get mutivariate statistics and curvilinear models, some of which I did not get until I was in my doctoral stats courses (despite having 30 hours of undergraduate mathematics with my ComSc undergraduate degree). But they also get all the core business classes in an AACSB-accredited program.

Our local corporations are very excited about the program and have helped us build the curriculum (Acxiom, for example). They are snapping up our first set of students for internships (the program is just starting our third year). We do still have to explain to some other companies what these students can do because the program (and the field) is so new.

So, keep building the case for better communications from the Analytics department. I and my colleagues will work the business end of the gap. Hopefully, they will connect somewhere in the middle.

Re: We need to talk more
  • 10/25/2014 4:24:38 PM
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No question that regular meetings and interaction is critical, but don't restrict or impose a hard number because circumstances and situations should ultimately dictate. Too much, you bore. Too few, you're ineffective.

Re: We need to talk more
  • 10/24/2014 1:00:32 PM
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Maybe an internal blog would be better.

Re: We need to talk more
  • 10/24/2014 12:57:54 PM
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We are in a world where things can change by the minute, but you wouldn't want these meetings to happen with such frequency that there are no updates. That leads to the meeting becoming useless in the eye of the attendees!

Re: We need to talk more
  • 10/24/2014 1:20:47 AM
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It would seem that working with others to obtain buy-in would be in a 101 class someone took before, but it does happen a lot.  Nothing is as wonderful as having someone you don't know come in with a report saying "Here's what is wrong with you?"  Even if the information is accurate, it doesn't make a person want to cooperate. 

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