Bloomberg Knows How Important Data Is to Business
Putting Data in the Driver’s Seat Pays Off for Billionaire and All Businesses
Entrepreneur, philanthropist, and three-term mayor of New York City, Michael Bloomberg recently posted an article on fostering innovation on LinkedIn (okay, it was last month). While I do read a lot of business articles about innovation, it was the second half of the headline that caught my eye.
How to Foster Innovation at Your Company: Follow the Data
In the piece, Bloomberg describes how Bloomberg Philanthropies focuses on data to identify unmet global needs, evaluate their progress in addressing them, and bring their solutions to those who need them. As he puts it:
“In God we trust. Everyone else bring data.”
The individual who actually introduced me to the phrase “Follow the Data” is Chris Miller, a Senior Business Development Manager at MicroPact. Chris first blogged about it in 2012.
“We live in a world full of information (data). Taking a ‘follow the data’ philosophy gives you the information you need to make informed decisions right out of the gate. Taking a ‘data-first’ approach also positions you to take advantage of Big Data down the road.”
What I find very interesting about “the data” is that at first glance it is absolutely soulless. It is just bits and bytes of information that get squirreled away somewhere. Data by itself doesn’t do anything. But when you aggregate it, dig into it, explore it, turn it this way and that, and use it to paint a picture, that’s when it comes alive and moves to the driver’s seat. That is when you can really “follow the data.”
Data is in the Driver's Seat
As simple as it seems, it’s data that gives us some of the best tools for change.
- It was a very knowledgeable and respected Air Force Division Chief in the logistics arena that told Chris Miller “We just need to follow the data. We can’t make informed decisions without it.”
- It’s data that drives the key strategies of the Bloomberg Initiative to Reduce Tobacco Use, which is saving millions of lives.
- And, as reported in a recently commissioned study conducted by Forrester Consulting on behalf of MicroPact, it will be data-first oriented applications that will provide richer and more personalized interactions in support of today’s knowledge worker.
Today, data is the story.
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