Big Data is big business. Sensors, GPS tracking, math modeling, and artificial intelligence offer companies real-time market insights at massive scale and open the door to unprecedented ways of monitoring, targeting, and measuring employees and customers. Analyst firm Gartner predicts that enterprises adopting Big Data technologies will “outperform competitors by 20 percent in every available financial metric.”
Big Data might well be “the new oil,” but I would caution us not to worship it as the new religion. I’m afraid that amidst all the data frenzy we are not only losing a more holistic view of business but also an important part of our humanity. How do we appreciate quality if we capture it only in quants? How much (or little) space do we leave for creativity and human expression if we equate better living with better algorithms?
I am not a dataphobe, but I am concerned about relying only on data. I am not against quantitative metrics, but I question their authority as the main indicators of business performance, prosperous societies, and meaningful lives.
Big Data comes with many benefits, but let’s complement it with Big Intuition . Here are six...
Andy Warhol knew it all along: “Good business is the best art.” And lately, a number of business thinkers and leaders have begun to embrace the arts, not as an escapist notion, a parallel world after office hours, or a creative asset, but as an integral part of the human enterprise that ought to be woven into the fabric of every business—from the management team to operations to customer service.