When I originally sat down to write this announcement, I was planning to do the traditional press release, where we state how important what we’re doing is, based on randomly plucked quotes from the big 4, and how wonderfully we’re doing it (it is and we are!).
However, honestly, I’m bored of reading those myself… so instead, let’s talk about why Data Literacy Academy exists and why awesome folks like Haatch Ventures, education experts Ufi VocTech Trust and Jason Foster, CEO of rocket-ship consultancy Cynozure and Global Data Leader 2022, thought it was worth coming along for the ride.
So, let me be transparent… there was a time when my data capability was as good as my cooking (my fiancée will be happy to reference here!) and at its core, that’s why Data Literacy Academy exists. I’d had no exposure to data, no requirement to use it and ‘gut feel’ had been the order of the day up to that point in my career. Sometimes gut feel really came through for me, don’t get me wrong… but other times, not so much!
Next thing I know, I find myself in an environment as data-fluent as they come, where everyone else in the business had worked their entire career in data, at a range of incredible companies. The world was different here. People talked about decisions as bets and hypotheses that needed proving out. They pulled data from all over the shop and used it to substantiate their suggestions or concerns. And most importantly, it worked!
Sheesh, was I out of my depth! I felt like the stupid kid in the corner, who didn’t know how to talk the talk or walk the walk and I had to do something about it.
Fast forward twelve months and with the help of colleagues, plus hours upon hours, upon hours spent self-guided learning, I’d gotten over the first few hurdles. My confidence had grown, I felt less like the stupid kid and I’d started to apply analytical methods to (most of) my decision-making.
I was becoming data literate and it was accelerating my career. The decisions were better, took less time to iterate on and most importantly, we were making more money as a business (that was my job after all!).
But 3 things struck me when I reflected:
- Why had it been so hard!? Why wasn’t there a path for someone like me to learn data, in a language and style I understood? The world needed an easier way.
- What was everyone’s obsession with hard skills!? It’s like the world thought teaching me Tableau would be the answer, before I was even comfortable with what analysis was.
- The more I spoke with data teams, the more I realised they weren’t really in a position to help their business people learn. They couldn’t remember being anxious about data or not understanding the most basic analysis, were short on bandwidth and usually firefighting technology challenges.
Something had to change. So here we are. Data Literacy Academy. Working with Chief Data Officers and business leaders to implement the cultural change they’ve always promised (and Gartner reckon they should be making – told you important people think it’s important too!).
It’s far more than education. Together we create meaningful change programmes, patiently build from ground zero with business people who are disengaged and anxious about data, and this $525,000 will help us to help more of them. The time is now for data literacy!
That’s why the money matters. Data is taking over the world and now we get to passionately help more employees go on their own journey, before it’s too late for them and their businesses!
Want to see how we can help create your data culture and embed data-driven decision making? We offer Free Data Literacy Consultations right here!
Founder and CEO