Data in Action for the Proactive Young Professional

Data, analytics, benchmarking: three buzzwords that we use all the time across various industries and lifestyles. These words and the power they bring are integrated into our daily routine sometimes without even a second thought. 

 These three buzzwords are transforming the data we share, the numbers we digest and decisions we make. But there’s one word that is missing – perspective. 

 Any professional can be a data transfer agent, which involves taking one’s intel or information and passing it along to those around you. But what really takes work is organizing, categorizing, sequencing, reviewing and understanding the information that a client, customer or partner provides to you while providing a perspective that is favorable in nature to build future success.

So, in a world filled with data, how do we, as young professionals, avoid being just another data transfer agent? While being a data transfer agent is a first step, how do we go above and beyond the expectations of our state, our city, industries, and workplace?

Now, you must be thinking, “what’s in it for me,” so let’s dive into it. In return for your ability to organize, categorize, and understand the data that is around you, you will be able to provide control over a program and hone intellectual capital, giving you the perspective to understand what’s really going on with information and the ability to provide real-time solutions. 

Information is power. But unless it is organized in a meaningful way, it is worthless. So, if you are questioning the data, analytics or benchmarking that you are sharing now and how it is affecting your bottom line; choose to build up your knowledge so that you can provide an invaluable perspective on the interrelation between risk and data. 

To start building your relationship with data and hone an ability to share perspective on data, it is imperative to engage is a qualitative four-step approach. 

Define the raw data

This four-step approach starts with defining the raw data or information. Today, unless the data is sourced directly by you or your experienced team, you should not relay information without verifying the data pool, data capture or data sequence. While it is easy to share statistics from another team or trusted source, this ultimately leads to more data transfer agents in our world. If you are interested in reporting new data or information to your network, company or customer, get started by conducting weekly, bi-weekly or monthly surveillance on the subject matter you wish to explore. Even though this surveillance on your specific topic may take more time, it will ultimately build your credibility.

Build your knowledge

Secondly, in this four-step approach, it is important to build your knowledge. So, pick that segment that interests you and jump into becoming an expert. There are countless ways to become educated in our world, so get started and take that specialized course or gain that new degree. Not only will this step enhance your skills with data and build your reputation; it will accelerate you to a new level in your industry and prime you to answer those “tough questions” when your data is reviewed or used to make enterprise decision making. 

Translate data to insights to continue providing your unique perspective

The third step in our desensitization to becoming a data transfer agent is a build up from steps one and two. This step leads us to having wisdom on the data and leveraging perspective at large. Wisdom comes as practice and knowledge are learned. Thus, the more you are committed to stopping the spread of unverified data in our generation the greater wisdom you will have. Many times, young professionals forget that time is on their side and that wisdom can be across multiple topics or subjects. So, it is encouraged to start early and often on sourcing, surveillancing and learning about the source of not only your data but also the factors that influence your data. The goal from this step is to provide your wisdom on our final step, and that is creating a plan of action. 

Build a plan of action

As we look at the last piece of this four-step approach, we know that this final component, building a plan of action, is critical. The plan of action can be tailored to every interaction you have whether that’s thought leadership, storytelling or customer solutions based on your data findings. This plan of action is incredible because it will be built from your raw dataset and encompass both your knowledge and wisdom. The plan of action will be different for each audience you engage with, but three items you can guarantee in each action plan are having next steps on decision making, surveillance from a strong pool of data and ultimately a perspective between risk and data. This is the future young professionals can build in the marketplace. 

 Together as a generation, let’s make the choice to provide meaningful perspectives to our networks and avoid just being another data transfer agent.