Why organisations need data advocates

2/4 of Colleen Dilenschneider’s steps to a data informed cultural organisation

Bringing the data to life – here is step 2 of Colleen Dilenschneider’s path to becoming a data informed cultural organisation: The Few, The Proud, The Nerdy – Why Your Organization Needs Data Advocates (2/4)

From my experience working at Tate, I support this 100%. Research and data alone are not enough to become data informed. It requires a lot activation to get people to understand, embrace and eventually act on research findings. Investing in insight is great, but investing in its activation will get you the return.

As Colleen suggests, “data needs:

  • an insider who knows what the findings mean
  • a storyteller who shares the story that the data tells
  • a translator, so it isn’t misunderstood
  • a champion, so it is kept front and centre”

Read Colleen’s article here.

What it takes to become a data-informed cultural organisation (1/4)

It’s more than just data

Some great insights into becoming a data-informed cultural organisation can be found in a mini-series of Colleen Dilenschneider, of US research agency Impacts, on her blog.

Her blog on the first step of data collection is out now with some useful explanations of types of research, what to measure and how to get the data.

But data is only the start, of course, and the culture change involved is not to be underestimated. Look out for the other three of the four steps she proposes over the coming weeks: data interpretation, data acceptance and data integration.

The power of brand inside organisations

The power of brand inside organisations – shaping the staff and the visitor experience

I was thinking about branding and came across this interview with branding expert Robert Jones, strategist at Wolff Olins (the agency involved in the development of the Tate brand when Tate Modern first opened) and professor of brand leadership at the University of East Anglia.

What I found particularly interesting is the power of brands inside organisations as they set the tone and culture of the organisation and of staff behaviour.

This strikes me as highly relevant for arts and culture organisations who are about a visitor experience. This experience is to a large part shaped by its staff, those in direct contact with visitors as well as those behind the scenes – the more they live the brand the more visitors will experience it.

This means brand building should not only be thought of as an externally focused marketing activity, but that it can be a strong internal tool. An example from Ikea in the interview, demonstrates the role leadership can play in personifying the brand and setting a powerful example for internal culture and staff behaviour.