Tag Archives: Data

How to make the world seem REEAAALLLY BOORRRIIIING

How to be bored Take a performance report. Get the data out of those damn tables and silly bar graphs. Stick it in a run chart, or a control chart, s’up to you. Look for any actual change over the … Continue reading

Posted in data, knowledge, statistics, systems thinking, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , | 2 Comments

Why WIFFY’s are bad and to be squashed at birth

YEARS ago some clever lady told me… Avoid What If’s, these are called WIFFYs. Never allow them. If you see somebody asking “But…what if?” stop them there and then and ask “has it? do we have data that it is? … Continue reading

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The man who mistook his wife for an actual change in performance

There was once a man who mistook his wife for a hat. This is his wife. This is a hat. He thought Why did he think that? He had a brain injury. The injury affected the way his brain processed … Continue reading

Posted in data, experiment, measures, systems thinking | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments

How to be hopelessly untrendy

I got me some data! Done gone put it in a graph! Added meself a TRENDLINE! And me answer is THE TREND IS DOWNWARDS! This is what happens when people get data and have excel. They stick it in and press … Continue reading

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I’ve had it with average and why you should too

Who’s the biggest out of these two guys? Is it the guy on the left? He’s barrel chested, bulky looking guy. Could be. But he’s kind of short. What about the guy on the right? He’s biggest cos he’s taller? … Continue reading

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3 more things performance management GETS ALL WRONG

As Jay Z asserts, there is plenty wrong with performance management. And here’s 3 more! Name  The reverse pantomime horse gambit What is it? An organisation decides to do something, writes down a group of words and calls it an objective/goal/priority AND THEREFORE IT … Continue reading

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How to be fooled by randomness

This is a roulette wheel. It is a machine for producing numbers between 0 and 36. Sometimes it produces a 7… Then sometimes it produces a 13… If a 7 is produced on one spin and a 13 on the … Continue reading

Posted in data, leadership, systems thinking | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

The house that looks like Hitler

Remember the house that looks like Hitler? Course you do, it’s a house that looks like Hitler. What’s to forget? There’s loads of things that look like faces. There is the tampon machine that just loves checkin’ the ladies out… … Continue reading

Posted in human brains are weird, information, psychology, statistics, systems thinking | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

Why targets are good

Targets are good. They work. Comparing this quarters performance with last quarters, is good. It works Benchmarking performance against a group of other organisations, is good. That works too. Calm down! Let’s go back a bit…. Q: What’s the first … Continue reading

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Why scorecards are as dangerous as Michael Jackson’s personal doctor

Let me take you back to an experiment that took place in 1930s New York…..   No matter how many times a child was presented to a doctor, there was a 50% chance that they would be prescibed a tonsilectomy…even if … Continue reading

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What is Tiny Data and why is it crucial?

We all know that Big Data is cack. “So if you don’t like Big Data, what’s your alternative then?”, I hear nobody cry. There’s all sorts of data, here’s some definitions I just made up. Definitions Big Data: Data and … Continue reading

Posted in data, systems thinking | Tagged , , , | 9 Comments

Come on feel the noize

If you’ve know anything about systems thinking and that, you know it’s chock full of counter intuitive truths. Here are some truths about one aspect of it all: when you “eyeball data” by looking at it in a table, graph … Continue reading

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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 … Continue reading

Posted in data, knowledge, Uncategorized | Tagged , | 2 Comments

Alchemy

There’s no such thing as alchemy. Despite that, I have been disappointing senior managers for years by failing to produce gold out of dross. Alchemy is still believed in, at the highest levels of organisations. There are senior managers who believe that the … Continue reading

Posted in clarity of purpose, command and control, data, learning | Tagged , | 24 Comments

Averagely funny

This man has more than the average number of legs for an Australian… ..and so does this Australian have more than the average number of legs too. How is this? There are a very few Australians with no legs, few Australians … Continue reading

Posted in data, Uncategorized | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

Punching above your weight

What would give you extra prowess in the meeting room? More bang for your buck? Data! But not just any data, made-up data. This is my secret. The best data is made-up. Pretend! Nobody ever has real data, not to … Continue reading

Posted in data, deming, very short posts | Tagged | 4 Comments

How clean is my table?

The last post was about there being “no true value” of a measure, unless you define what you mean to measure, and that the way to know what you are supposed to be measuring is to define measure by purpose. … Continue reading

Posted in clarity of purpose, deming, purpose, systems thinking, Uncategorized | Tagged | 1 Comment

Map versus Territory

The nice lady at work who is in charge of GIS (Geographical Information Mapping) was showing me a very clever piece of software that showed in 3D the borough with each ward’s height relative to an indicator like % of … Continue reading

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Magical pixie dust

The following are all real answers given in organisations in answer to the question: “How will we achieve our targets?” “Improvements in service delivery focussing on services which really matter to customers” “Ongoing training and evaluation of training needs. Increase … Continue reading

Posted in all wrong, command and control, deming, setting a numerical target is like..., systems thinking, Uncategorized | Tagged , , | 4 Comments

Shooting blanks

What is more dangerous than this gun? The air you breathe and Ross Kemp.

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