Just because you can…

Just because you can...

In response to a recent Wednesday Wisdom on averages hiding the extremes, a past client of mine said: "This reminds of the old saying: Just because you can, doesn't mean you should."

And he's absolutely right! There are many examples of this in data management. Here are just a couple:

+ "While our members are renewing membership, let's ask them a bunch of other demographic questions." Just because you CAN ask those questions, is during the renewal process the right time to do it? I would argue "no" because the more steps you require someone to complete to renew, the less likely they are to renew!

+ "Let's ask them for their [random piece of data] because we might use that data someday." Just because you CAN ask for that data doesn't mean you should. Every piece of data you collect should have some use immediately. If the data isn't being used for something, it shouldn't be collected at all.

And of course, there are many more examples. Technology makes it incredibly easy and inexpensive to collect data. But be sure you've got a good reason to collect the data, and make sure you're collecting it at the right time.

After all, just because you can collect it doesn't mean you should.

Wes's Wednesday Wisdom Archives

First, you gotta have the data

February 17, 2021

First, you gotta have the data When I work with clients on a new AMS …

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Work on your relationship with your AMS vendor

February 10, 2021

Work on your relationship with your AMS vendor It is no coincidence that my most …

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Dashboards for Data Integrity

February 3, 2021

Dashboards for Data Integrity I’ve written a bunch on data integrity reports. (Click here for …

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Next-to-Nothing Goals

January 27, 2021

Next-to-Nothing Goals I saw a Ted Talk by Christine Carter recently discussing the concept of …

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Always ask “Why?”

January 13, 2021

Always ask “Why?” Little kids ask “Why?” all the time, because they are sponges for …

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Averages hide the extremes

January 6, 2021

Averages hide the extremes I can’t remember where I first heard it, but “averages hide …

Averages hide the extremes Read More »

Look up PARTIAL names!

December 24, 2020

Look up PARTIAL names! Train your staff to do look ups on partial names, not full …

Look up PARTIAL names! Read More »

Not Just Technology

December 16, 2020

Not Just Technology There was recently a discussion on the ASAE online community about project management …

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Consider quitting

December 4, 2020

Consider quitting Patient: “Doctor, it hurts when I do this.” Doctor: “Then stop doing that.” …

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There is nothing so permanent as business rules

November 25, 2020

There is nothing so permanent as business rules Nobel Prize-winning economist Milton Friedman said, “There’s nothing …

There is nothing so permanent as business rules Read More »

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