First ask: “How will I use this data?”

First ask: "How will I use this data?"

Whether it's during data conversion, adding a new data field, or reconsidering a given process, one of the first questions you should ask is "How will we use that data?"

Put another way, just because we can manage the data doesn't mean we should!

For example, I was speaking with a client recently about how to manage organization records within their database. They have individual members and want to associate all of the individuals with their appropriate organizations. It's an understandable desire. But when asked the question "How will we use that data?" the answer was "We're not really sure."

We all have lots of data we need to manage. And lots more we might want to manage. But for any data we manage, we need to be able to quickly answer the question "How does this data get used?" If we can't answer that, it's probably not data we need to be managing!

Wes's Wednesday Wisdom Archives

Try flowcharting your processes

October 21, 2020

Try flowcharting your processes Working with a client recently on their membership join process reminded me …

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“I just want a system I don’t have to fight with.”

October 14, 2020

“I just want a system I don’t have to fight with.” I asked my client: …

“I just want a system I don’t have to fight with.” Read More »

Inertia Contributes to Bad Data

October 7, 2020

Inertia Contributes to Bad Data Without knowing anything about your organization or its data, I’d …

Inertia Contributes to Bad Data Read More »

What are you doing with new contacts?

September 30, 2020

What Are You Doing with New Contacts/ I was very interested to read in a …

What are you doing with new contacts? Read More »

Be Aware of Selection Bias

September 23, 2020

Be Aware of Selection Bias I wrote recently about the mistaken perception of older members …

Be Aware of Selection Bias Read More »

Some Things Just Take Time

September 16, 2020

Some Things Just Take Time I learned recently that an elephant’s gestation period is 18 …

Some Things Just Take Time Read More »

Sometimes It’s the Least Bad Choice

September 7, 2020

Sometimes It’s the Least Bad Choice Just like in life, sometimes when we’re making technology …

Sometimes It’s the Least Bad Choice Read More »

Our Members Aren’t Tech Savvy

September 2, 2020

Our Members Aren’t Tech Savvy Having worked now in the association space for more than …

Our Members Aren’t Tech Savvy Read More »

Motion vs. Action

August 26, 2020

Motion vs. Action One key to successful data management is understanding the difference between motion …

Motion vs. Action Read More »

There is ALWAYS a Trade-off

August 19, 2020

There is ALWAYS a Trade-off I’ve written many times about trade-offs (you can read a …

There is ALWAYS a Trade-off Read More »

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