Based on some recent athletes’ news, appropriate behavior in sports is a big focus. When it comes to ideal sportsmanship, I think of John Wooden and his success as a coach for UCLA men’s basketball program.

10 Lessons on Data Management from Sports Coach John WoodenHe won 10 national championships, including seven in a row. John Wooden always looked for players with an eagerness to do what’s best for the group.

During John Wooden’s career, I was working with a lot of companies on their data management practices. I was introduced to many people from many business units during this time. and as I started working with these companies, I took John Wooden’s advice on his lessons in leadership and applied it to data management.

1. Good values attract good people = Good data attracts more good data

Let’s look at the team members in place for managing your data. Do you have the right stakeholders in place that are putting forth the policies and governance practices?

2. Love is the most powerful four-letter word = Data is the most powerful four-letter word

What does your data landscape look like? What is the quality of your data? What is your data intelligence? There are so many questions that you can ask as well as so many dimension of data.

3. Call yourself a teacher = Let data be your teacher

Analyze your data as it will provide insights and guide you where you need to go.

4. Emotion is your enemy = Bad data is your enemy

As shared in this post, data quality blogger, Jim Harris, notes, “Perhaps poor quality is data’s antihero — a central character lacking some of the conventional heroic attributes, but nonetheless benefits the greater good, albeit not always by the most noble means possible.  After all, without poor quality there would not be, according to Gartner research, a market for data quality technology projected to produce $2 billion in constant-dollar revenue by 2017.  Which is not to say that all you have to do is throw technology at poor quality data, but it is one of many essential aspects of data quality best practices.  After all, without technology Batman and Iron Man would just be Bruce Wayne and Tony Stark.”

5. It takes 10 hands to make a basket = It takes a team to build new revenue opportunities

The goal is to build a cohesive solution that delivers a consistent, accurate and complete view through operational and analytical touch-points across enterprise, thus enabling the optimization of key business processes and leverages new revenue opportunities.

6. The carrot is mightier than the stick = Little data makes big data happen

Be open and optimistic. Wooden encouraged instead of punished. He cared, instead of scared. There is opportunity in every piece of data, and that is a mindset that you need to embrace.

7. Make greatness attainable by all = Make each data record your masterpiece

Having the right data will lead to success. The question is “How do you do this?”

With sound governance and business driven data you can achieve a connection between understanding the business objective and gain customer insight.

8. Seek significant change = Seek significant data

Tom Redman, author of Data Driven, shares in this post that “There are two interesting moments in the lifetime of a piece of data: the moment it is created and the moment it is used.” Find the best data and use it.

9. Don’t look at the scoreboard = It’s not all about sales dashboards

Sales expert, Jim Keenan shares, “I’m a huge fan of data, but only to the extent it allows me to make choices and change things NOW. Do not use data for data’s sake.”

10. Adversity is your asset = Data is your asset

If you manage your data appropriately, and have the right team in place to help your organization, good data will come. (Another sport analogy, now from the Field of Dreams, “If you build it, they will come.”) However, make sure you have the right team and right leadership to provide the right plays.

For more insight about data and data management, read the free ebook below.

10 Lessons on Data Management from Sports Coach John Wooden

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