BI for Start Ups, Business Intelligence, Data Nerds, Learning New Things

3 first steps into becoming a Business Intelligence resource

BI - Books to start with
BI recommended beginners reading

Note that I did not write Data Scientist or Business Intelligence Expert. This is because this post is meant for those who plan to join the field with no former experience.

To become a Data Scientist or Business Intelligence Expert, you have to learn the basics of handling data first.

Here comes a starters list:

  1. You need to understand the basic business metrics and KPIsWhat data is currently used for.

Check basic KPIs for different branches and learn to the intended purpose of the measurements. Most data collected today is used for Descriptive analysis, i.e. looking back at what has happened. To start the journey towards BI and data expertise, you need to understand the basics of BI today. Some suggested books are in the above image – BI recommended beginners reading.

2. Next step is to understand how the data you are collecting today will be used in the future. This will give you invaluable insight into what data you need and how the solutions need to be designed to deal with future analysis needs.

Descriptive vs Predictive analysisIn any career, you need to be strategic. All businesses want to utilize their data for strategic actions and competitive advantage. A big part of this understanding how customers will or may act in the future. Based on customer behaviour today, what will they need in, say – one year, two years etc.

Descriptive vs Predictive analysis 23. Learn the basic techniques and methodologies of handling, processing and analyzing data.

Most of these are well described in Kimball’s Data Warehouse tool kit which has been invaluable for me. I still re-visit it, when a difficult problem arises and I have forgotten exactly how the syntax or logic should be. SQL and data modelling techniques are globally useful and a good base to build you data expertise on. Please refer to the above image – BI recommended beginners reading.  Additionally, there are numerous online resources so you are spoiled for choice! Just find something that works for you in the learning process and keep learning.

Feel free to make contact with questions or input! And leave comments with your own suggestions below.

Thanks! /Linda

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Business Intelligence, Data Nerds, Data Science, IT Management, Learning New Things

#Mindmaps for Making Sense of Data

Continual Improvement

I have had a little time in between all the data quality issues so I am practicing the mind-maps.

When i was student, I used mind-maps, use-cases and information models to make notes. I am a connection kind of person, I learn by connecting one thing to the other. I am reading through Donald J. Wheeler’s, Making sense of data. To understand it all, I will need all the mind-maps I can make.

In the 1st chapter, Mr. Wheeler presents quite briefly the Continual Improvement approach.

Business Intelligence, Data Nerds, Learning New Things

The Business Intelligence of Money

This post is triggered by the January financial woes. Everybody, or most us at least,  Financial freedom - Money analysisagree that right about this week, January feels like the longest month of the year.

Apart from time, money is one of the most analyzed values. Some companies do not analyze anything else, besides money-in, money-out analysis. A pity because then you can miss the behavioral values that affect money-in money-out ratios.

However, where companies can over-analyze money, individuals have a hard time understanding the intelligence and value of money.

Business Intelligence is the art of finding useful, actionable information in the existing data-volumes and then, utilizing this information to make decisions that can alter lives.

Even private lives in the micro level of finance.

There are lots of tips on how to stay afloat even through emergencies. For example, save 10% of your income every month. But does that really work for all of us, all the time? Doubtful.

Alternatively, the intelligence of money is being economical as a way of life.

To save is to learn to understand Business Intelligence of profits and losses:

  1. High Season, High Price. Low Season, Low Price.
    • Travel cheap – Buying tickets on certain days and certain times can save you up to 70% on flight tickets. Airlines earn the profits on the loaded dudes who buy tickets at full price on the wrong days. To fill the remaining seats, they then cut prices for the poor dude who must travel and are looking for a deal.

Be the dude and look for tickets at uncomfortable hours.

    • Buying certain items on certain days and certain times can save you quite a dime per year. Same theory as above. The profits are earned in the beginning of the sales season of whatever it is. Even fruits. Most people buy avocado at full price when avocados first arrive in the market. After a few weeks, most consumers have had a fill of avocados and the shops can’t seem to get rid of the avocados. Voila! Cheap avocados.

Shopping 60th January 20182. Companies use Discounts as a way to get rid of what can’t be sold on full price. It is not a favor to you. Learn your math for utilizing those coupons!If have combination promo codes and coupons, use the promo code that you can apply on the whole order, and full price first.

  • No Company is your best friend unless you have a friendly-price-contract. And even then. Learn to Compare. The biggest BI activity is comparison. Sales Now compared to last year/week/month etc. Compare your potential buys before you order.
  • You are your own core business. You generate the income and the profits. And unfortunately, you are also the expense. Understand your income inflow and outflow.
    • What costs you money? Is it something you must have for your core business to be productive? Can you automate it? Can you control the outflow?
      • Companies usually try to reduce employees and other volatile assets that need lots of maintenance. Can you?
    • What earns you money? Is it sustainable? Can it be optimized?

Put away as much as you can in cash every month. Once we learn the hack of saving, we can learn to invest the savings. This is recommended by most Financial advisors.

Don’t start to buy funds and shares until you are debt free and have a buffer saving.

Simply:

  1. Cancel your credit cards
  2. Pay your debts.
  3. Save!
  4. Invest

After you have stashed away the ~10%, if you can, you can continue to save on the net income left. It is thrifty, and can be categorized as penny-pinching but the rewards are worth any name calling.

 

 

 

Business Intelligence, Data Nerds, Data Science, IT Management, Learning New Things

To Enjoy Data and BI, Learn to Learn and Don’t be afraid of Change

“The illiterate of the 21st century will not be those who cannot read and write, but those who cannot learn, unlearn, and relearn.” — Alvin Toffler

BI and Data Science are the artistic, creative side of finding truths in unexpected nooks and crannies of organizations and societies. Finding links and interpreting the messages being received from the different interconnections and integrations between systems to ensure a holistic view of the world and of organizations. If you want to enjoy working with data, learn to learn and unlearn everything all the time. Because what you know today, what data tells you this minute, may change in two hours.

AI and LearningAI is changing our answer to “what will you be when you grow up?” The answer is not always nurse, pilot, accountant or all the cute things we said when we were children! In this age, you can say AI manager, Robot Designer or Machine Learner without blinking an eye. It is our future and imagine it! We need to imagine it positively in order to embrace our future so we can manage it.

No fear, even the AI-predictions may change, and the course of our lives will be altered. That is OK. We will learn whatever comes.

Don’t waste energy on trying to control the change, you cannot control the change, because it is out of our small hands. Change may happen because data and statistics can be manipulated or due to the fact that our virtual, online realities are changing every hour. A post on twitter may change the sales predictions your sales team made yesterday. An online AD today may change your expansion vision for 2018.