It’s always the fault of the tool – A rant

Imagine the following fictional situation:

James Bond: “I am really sorry, M. But I won’t be able to chase down Dr. Evil. The Aston Martin you gave me is at least 12 months old and it doesn’t have the latest DK-B765 features from section Q. I really need another vehicle in order to get my job done.”

M: “007, get your act together! We have provided you with more tools than anybody else here at MI-6.”

James Bond: “Sorry, Sir. But I have tried the old Aston and found that I cannot do certain things I dream about. Also, the ride is quite different from my prior car. The vehicle is clearly holding me back.”

M: “When I look at your records, I can see that you completed your last mission with a car from 1978. It doesn’t make sense.”

James Bond: “Sir, with all respect: I know that car really well. Sure it’s slow and doesn’t have the latest gadgets but it has served me well.”

M: “007, I am about to send you off to the South Pole to search for the ozone layer. When is the last time you have taken time to learn how the Aston Martin works? I can see that you spend a lot of time fixing that white vehicle from 1978 . Also, your records indicate that you haven’t attended any of the advanced ‘reckless spy driving classes’ we offered last month. And let me ask you a question: Have you even taken the Aston out on the track to practice? Huh?”

James Bond: “Errr….I was too busy. Plus it doesn’t make sense to pick up new skills until I have that new ride. I promise you, the world will be a safe place once you give me the gadgets that I really want. Big agent promise! It’s all about the gadgets.”

M: “007 – get your winter jacket and interview some penguins!!!”

BUSINESS ANALYTICS

It’s too easy to make excuses and to blame our software tools for not helping us. It’s always the fault of the tool. But truth of the matter is that most software platforms offer more functionality anyone could ever use. But not nearly enough people take responsibility and actually learn what the tools can do for them today. Learning requires effort. But it pays off.

2012 is almost around the corner. Many people start making goals for the new year. When is the last time you have:

  • Planning softwareInvested time to learn your business analytics platform?
  • Played with your software and tried a few new techniques?
  • Attend a class about analytics?
  • Read a book about analytics?
  • Learned about charting techniques?
  • Met with other users to exchange knowledge?
  • Thought about the information you really need to make good business decisions?
  • Looked at your data from different angles?