Santa Cruz Tech Beat


5 Ways to Kickstart a Data-Driven Company Culture in 2020

By Zara Wells
Enterprise Customer Success Manager at Looker

January 28, 2020 — Santa Cruz, CA

If you’ve been looking for ways to get your colleagues more excited about becoming more data-driven this year, you’ve landed on the right blog post.

Getting people on board with data has a lot to do with two terms that were thrust into the limelight in 2019: ‘data culture’ and ‘data literacy’.

In talking to customers about these initiatives, I found that (1) many felt like they should have a data culture, and (2) not everyone knows what that means.

Here’s how we think about these terms at Looker:

  • Data Culture: A community made up of data-driven individuals across all departments and levels. These communities are where everyone is empowered to use data critically, to make decisions, and start conversations rather than close them down.
  • Data Literacy: The ability to read, understand, and communicate through the use of data.

If you want a deeper dive into these definitions, check out our JOIN presentation about how to build data literacy in your organization.

Organizations that haven’t promoted a data-driven culture or invested in improving each employee’s data literacy are beginning to fall behind. Their competitors are charging ahead, powered by the democratization of data and the ability for all to access, understand, and communicate with it. Employees are enabled and empowered to make data-driven decisions to keep the business on the right course, there’s no bottleneck to get insights, and there is no ambiguity thanks to the governed foundations the data teams have put in place to support this culture.

Unfortunately, creating a culture of data is not as simple as having employees pass a Data Literacy Certification or having the CEO send out a note saying, “as of 2020, we have a data culture”; but there are concrete steps that you and your company can start taking today.

Here are five lightweight initiatives you can bake into your 2020 strategy to start developing a data culture at your organization.

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