The continuing debates around “Big Data” have included arguments that with enough data and enough computer power patterns and trends will be surfaced automatically in future. Is this going to result is less real thinking going into enterprise strategy? Some observers (for example Howard Rohm) have noted that too many organisations already have plans and scorecards that have been insufficiently influenced by strategic thinking! Against this background it was refreshing to see Justin Fox in the HBR Blog remind us that it helps to decide on the data to be looked at and that we can be very good at revising our subjective opinions as we see new data. Our challenge is to ensure big data is our servant rather than our master. Lets use it to help us focus better on the needs of our customers and indeed our broader Corporate Governance. For example use the data to:
- Support improved management practices – including the Management 2.0 approach recently articulated by the Drucker Society Europe comprising evolved management mindset, role of managers, the way work is coordinated, the values practiced and the way people communicate.
- Inform more robust strategic consideration of the essential pillars our enterprises need to support the realisation of their 21st century Q1 vision and mission – for example perhaps a great virtual place to work and the likes of operational excellence, strategic partnering and service excellence emphasised by the likes of the Balance Scorecard Institute.
- Improve the information we use to govern our enterprises – for example irrespective of whether a balanced scorecard report is being used ensure we are obtaining relevant big data to improve our understanding of customers, potential customers and employees and the performance of our business processes.