We’ve all known overconfident leaders. Maybe you’ve even worked for one. Someone who has too much faith in their own abilities and a stunning lack of self-awareness when it comes to their own shortcomings.
There’s a name for this phenomenon. It’s called the Dunning-Kruger effect, and it doesn’t just affect people. Whole organizations can be blissfully unaware of their own weaknesses and assume too much about their own strengths. When this happens, it’s not because of a character flaw. Rather, it’s because the organization doesn’t have good insight into its own internal workings.
As a CEO, the only way you can make effective decisions is to face reality head on. It’s vital for your organization that you find a way to see the inner workings of your business as clearly as possible. Business intelligence, or BI, gives you the technologies and processes that collect, visualize, and analyze the data produced by your organization to give the clarity you need.
But if you’re finding things a bit foggy, here are three reasons business intelligence should matter to you—maybe now more than ever.
Reason #1: Business Intelligence Uses Good Data to Make Good Decisions
There’s no point to gathering data if you have no intention of analyzing it. Likewise, there’s no point in analyzing data if you don’t have a means of collecting reliable information, since bad data can be worse than no data at all.
Committing yourself to business intelligence means making sure your organization collects the right data, stores it in an organized and accessible way, and thoroughly analyzes that information to spot patterns and trends. By doing all three, you provide your business with a solid foundation for making better decisions on projects big and small—from M&A to where you place a button in a customer portal—and everything in between.
Reason #2: Business Intelligence Can Make Your Organization More Efficient
Once you’re using the principles of business intelligence to make decisions, you’ll discover all kinds of practical applications. One of the best ways to use BI is to uncover the inefficiencies and wasteful practices that are costing you money.
For example, let’s say your company has clients across all 50 states, each with its own separate database. Applying the principles of business intelligence may reveal that these databases are incompatible when it comes to analytics, or that the same multi-state client is being logged multiple times. While small inefficiencies like these may not raise a red flag on their own, the net effect could be expensive for your organization.
Using BI helps you ferret out these kinds of issues and gives you the tools to address them. Ultimately, it helps you save money and makes you that much more competitive in the marketplace.
Reason #3: A Simple BI Assessment Provides Tremendous Intel
Your customers may know what your organization does, but do they understand why you do it? More and more often, people choose to work with companies that live in accordance with a particular mission or values.
Many organizations starting out with BI find it useful to undergo a BI assessment,. This tool helps you break BI down into small, actionable pieces that you can more easily implement by giving you an objective picture of where you stand and where you could do better. An assessment not only gives you clear information for steering your company but reinforces decision-making that serves your strategy.
When you know how to communicate data and trends within your organization and to external stakeholders, obstacles to your strategy start falling away. A BI assessment helps you fine tune your messaging.
Put Your Business Intelligence into Action
Whether you’re new to the idea of business intelligence or you’re mid-journey and trying to reach the next step, the principles and practices of BI have the potential to transform your organization.
With the right partner at your side, you can use these insights to thrive and scale up what you do. You’ve already been collecting the data—isn’t it time you put it to use?