Your efforts to becoming data driven might be missing buy-in.

Hello! 👋 It’s been awhile, but this is Deven, excited to share with you why our projects often consist of establishing a task force or committee.

Let me set the stage. When we scope work with organizations to evaluate a program or initiative, set up an infrastructure for collecting and reporting data, or instituting organizational change related to personnel, we are already thinking about sustainability. In other words, how will the work continue on after we have completed our work together?

We approach our work in a way that creates capacity for the organizations we’re working with. That means we need to consider what components an organization needs to continue the work — even after we’re gone. You see…we aren’t in the business of creating eternal dependency. Instead, we see our time with clients as a collaborative relationship. And sure, that varies based on the needs of the project and our client’s desire to be involved…but at the root of it all, we know that the changes we help to facilitate will only reach peak effectiveness if we create an environment for continued success. Otherwise, we’re just checking a box.

Part of creating space for that continued success can often include helping to establish a committee or task force — a representative group with ownership in the implementation of data driven practices. Whether that’s fostering an environment that supports, encourages, and even demands ongoing program evaluation, strategic planning, organizational development, and/or engaging data visualization and reporting, there needs to be organizational ownership — especially when incorporating data can mean disrupting the current way of doing things.

Gaining support from leaders at different levels in the organization will make your pitch stronger and ensure managers have time to prepare for questions from employees that arise throughout the process. – Elizabeth Dukes, Inc.com

I like this quote (and article) a lot. But, I think we have to expand upon who we include in our dialogue around change and that means including more than just leaders. By creating a group of individuals with varying perspectives, insights, and power levels across an organization (or program or initiative), we create a space in which organizational-wide change has the chance to actually stick (and truly be organization wide, for that matter). That’s because these individuals are clued into areas that a consultant (or even a team of all high-level leaders) might not be able to tap, the initiative is no longer just the brainchild of a consulting group or the C-Suite, and because this group will ultimately be in the position to champion your change.

There are a lot of articles related to gaining buy-in to change…and effectively implementing change. However, most of them assume the right idea has already been selected.

Expose the idea to outside criticism – and acknowledge it. – Kristi Hedges, Forbes

It’s important that we are intentional about making this process participatory — acknowledging that no one person is necessarily the expert. It’s through this collaboration and vulnerability that we are presented with the opportunity to develop something meaningful. 

Interested in learning more about how we don’t do data to you, but instead, create a collaborative environment that leverages data for the purpose of achieving outcomes? Let’s chat.