Not All That Can Be Measured Is Valuable
What you measure is what you value. But what if you don’t know what is valuable – how will you know to measure it?
Data is relative. Numbers alone don’t mean anything. 2/10? that means nothing. If you get into an accident 2/10 times you drive that’s a risk you’ll want to avoid. If you win the lottery 2/10 times you play, that’s a reward you’ll want to repeat. If the risk and return are understood relative to the baseline, you can make educated decisions. However, relativity, risks and subsequent gains are all based on baselines. Baselines you establish after you’ve spent a certain amount of time measuring something. There are 2 main problems with that.
One, what if you are measuring the wrong things?
Second, what if your initial numbers were flawed?
What if what you are measuring isn’t the most critical factor to your sales team’s success?
Domain experience should influence your benchmarks.
Data only gives you a certain part of the picture. To truly take that next step and differentiate yourself to create the biggest gap between you and your competitors, you have to find value in the unmeasurable. If it can’t be measured, no one else is measuring it. If it can’t be measured, no one else is looking at it. That is your competitive edge. You will inherently separate yourself from the pack, because if it could be measured, everyone else would already be doing it.
Most organizations have a very linear approach to problem solving. Previous solutions inspire future solutions, creating a very derivative and unimaginative strategy. They do this because it’s safe, because they have a framework of how they can measure progress, but like I said, true separation comes from doing something different. The only thing that is different in today’s marketplace are things that cannot be measured, because your competitors are afraid of investing in something they cannot tangibly track. The organizations who are brave enough to make decisions based on their domain experience, irrespective of what a data scientist tells them, are the ones that make the biggest strives forward. True change comes from anticipating what your market needs, before the data supports it.