A Bulldog's approach to communicating data

Customer Strategy Consulting"Of course, I can have all the data I want to have—but I still have to communicate it to our players....And they have to utilize it," said Butler University men's basketball coach, Brad Stevens, in this interview with McKinsey Global Institute.

Coach Stevens advice should resonate with any customer strategist. His best practices include:

1 - Don't inundate the players with data. In basketball, decisions are made immediately. Same goes for most business interactions. The way a customer service agent responds to a customer situation doesn't afford them time to carefully think through how they are going to respond. To help our players, we can't inundate them with data. Instead, we have to put thoughts in their mind about what the customer wants to achieve and how they can help.

2- Understand the players. "You've got to figure out how they react, how they best comprehend, how they best learn in a team setting, how they best learn in an individual setting, and go from there," Coach Stevens said. In the business world, this could be harder to scale than on a basketball team, but that isn't an excuse. If we focus on knowing the general tendencies of our players, we can tailor the way we communicate data to them. 

Consider what motivates your players. Are they driven by power, tradition, security, financial transactions, self-expression, or problem solving? Once we have this in mind, we can adapt our communications appropriately based on the way our players will naturally respond. 

There is no shortage of data, but there is an abundance of opportunity to improve the way we put data to use for our team. The opportunity for customer strategy consulting has never been better than it is now. And, in order to be successful, we must communicate our customer insights so they will be utilized.

Photo Credit: sabianmaggy

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