How Data and Analytics Leaders Must Address Emotional Impacts to Foster a Data-Driven Culture

Digital business depends on success with data and analytics, yet the major barriers to success are largely cultural and behavioral. Data and analytics leaders can help organizations overcome these emotional and psychological resistance factors and foster a more data-driven culture.

Key Findings

  • Humans are “wired” with multiple mechanisms that inhibit their ability to engage with facts.
  • Initial human responses tend to be emotional, rather than rational.
  • When people are presented with evidence that contradicts existing beliefs and values, their positions can become more entrenched, even when they can derive benefits from change.
  • Organizations often present business benefits as benefits to the business only, rather than consider their effects on the beliefs and motivations of individuals.

Gartner recommends data and analytics leaders such as chief data officers looking to modernize their strategy approach should:  

  • Connect emotionally with stakeholders to ensure that there is collective buy-in and personal buy-in to decisions.
  • Mitigate the psychological responses that inhibit engagement with data by communicating analytics outputs in ways that anticipate such reactions.
  • Apply and explain critical thinking explicitly when presenting analytics results, to overcome logical fallacies and decision biases.

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