Where’s the data?

Hello Peter! Hello Jane! Do you know where the data is?

Let’s go for look for it!

Books! That’s a good idea! But not there Jane. Try again!

Not in there!

Not down there either! Where could it be?

Is it under there? No!

Oh for fucks sake. Concentrate!

Data walks through your door every day in the form of your customers. There’s no need for a treasure hunt through databases. Just go to where people work. That’s where you’ll find your customers and chances are, it’s not far from your desk. Don’t stick your head down the toilet trying to see what’s round the U-bend. It’s not there. The data that matters doesn’t hide from you, it pounds on your door desperate to tell you what’s up. All you have to do is listen.

Go and listen to the customers walking through your door. Listen to what they want, what matters to them. There’s your data.

Listening to demand is where you start, don’t design a customer survey. Demand data tells you the problem you really should be trying to solve before you start to solve some other problem you’ve thought up.

It’s like what your teachers always used to say, read the exam question before starting to write the answer, if you don’t you’ll answer the question that you’d like to answer, not the actual question. Use the data walking through your door to find out the question you should be asking. And you always do that by going to the work. That is where your data is.

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2 Responses to Where’s the data?

  1. Another excellent and highly original blog post. I’m really enjoying your work at the moment. Keep it up!


    • ThinkPurpose says:

      Cheers! Make the most of it cos this week the quality dips considerably with the following coming up:
      – more poorly illustrated comics of Zombie Deming
      – a weak list held together by string
      – a threadbare idea stretched over an essay length post that exists purely to use the phrase “badgers mouth”.
      -the answer to that bloody astronaut quiz that’s been hanging round like a bad smell

      All the fun of the fair!


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