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Do Your Metrics Tell a Story?

There seems to be a growing trend that we are becoming less trusting of numbers instead of more. At least that’s what Dan Kane of the ITSM Review proposes. And he sets up a pretty convincing argument. When management listens to the data reported, it’s just cold facts and figures. No one would be willing to trust the numbers unless they tell a startling story, one that makes then sit up and listen.

Everyone comes to the table with their own personal biases.  That’s ok. A lot of it may have come from past learning experiences. The problem is when the personal opinions and the numbers don’t line up; management is more inclined to follow the gut reaction even without the metrics to support it. This is just human nature. In fact, when the numbers don’t support the personal anecdotes, it just drives people to be even more distrusting of the metrics.

So how can we remedy this situation? Present your data as not just numbers, but as a narrative. Use the facts to tell a compelling story about why changes need to be made and what will happen if they don’t. Only then will personal biases be set aside.  

About Rachel Ginder

Rachel Ginder was a staff writer for CAI's Accelerating IT Success and joined the team in 2013. She also helped with social media and research.

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