Industry Insights: Data-Driven Decisions

It’s no secret that we at The Killoe Group are big fans of data. We believe data is important to drive sound decision-making and avoid the “see-what-sticks” approach on which many organizations rely heavily. We utilize data when helping clients with their fundraising strategies; however, organizations can extrapolate the concept to support innovation and new ideas with evidence, ultimately leading to a higher success rate.

Despite the plentiful benefits of data-drive decision making, many organizations still struggle with incorporating data and analysis into day-to-day decision-making.

According to David Waller, the author of the Harvard Business Review article linked below, data-driven decisions must become a component of organizational culture for their use to become commonplace across the organization.

Waller provides ten tips to guide organizations in developing a data-driven culture, many of which align with the process we use when working with clients on data-driven fundraising and donor retention. Our top three tips from the list: choose metrics wisely, train your teams, and explain your choices.

Choose Metrics Wisely

When making the connection between data and decision-making, you should be sure the metrics align with the challenge at-hand and can support your teams in making actionable decisions.

Train Your Teams

To successfully roll out data-drive decision-making across your organization, provide your teams with background information that will help them understand why you’re implementing this new step, what it means for their specific workplace functions, and how it will enhance their performance. Additionally, provide technical training to help employees identify how data findings can improve decision making.

Explain Your Choices

As your teams begin relying on data more frequently to drive decision-making, practice having all members explain what data caused them to make the decision they did. These types of discussions not only create accountability but encourage collaborative analysis of your organization’s data.

To learn more about data-drive decisions and explore how you can transform your organizational culture, we recommend David Waller’s article, “10 Steps to Creating a Data-Driven Culture.”