Definition of “Data Driven”

Being data-driven means that when it comes to making decisions in your business, data is considered along with knowledge, experience and intuition. Relying only on data, as in some baseball stories, is unwise. So is relying only on gut-feel.

Data can be misinterpreted in so many ways that it is important to examine it in light of your knowledge and experience about the situation. We are the first to caution that correlation does not mean cause-effect. Suppose, for example, the data shows that the number of days schools are closed per month is higher in warmer months compared to colder months. Does this mean that warm temperatures cause schools to be closed more? To come to that conclusion does not imply being “data-driven.” It is indicative of a lack of knowledge about school calendars.

In a data-driven company, when a course of action is being taken, the question “does the evidence support our assumptions?” is also always asked.