It could take your business years to learn to make decisions based on facts instead of past experience, said Mike Marks in the recent MDM webcast The Link Between Business Intelligence & Profitability.
Marks attributes companies’ resistance to using data to make decisions to several factors, one being an overreliance on the knowledge of tenured employees. “We have all this knowledge in the heads of our employees, and a lot of them are aging out," he said. Marks said distributors who rely too much on employee wisdom will be at a loss when those employees retire.
Over-reliance on employee experience may also result in viable ideas being shot down without fair consideration. Marks said company leaders often see new ideas rejected outright based on what’s been tried before rather than the context of the current situation.
Naysayers are always ready with what went wrong in the past, he said. "And you say, 'When did that happen?' And they say, 'In 1963, right after Jack Kennedy was killed.' The stories are timeless, and how much of that blinds you?" Marks asked.
Another obstacle is finger-pointing when plans go awry. There is a tendency to blame others for the performance of new initiatives instead of focusing on external factors or ways to improve.
If these obstacles can be overcome, using data to drive decisions and then refining those initiatives with better data can become a feedback loop of constant improvement.
To learn more about using analytics to improve profits, and to see Marks’ list of the best and worst practices in data, watch the webcast on-demand.