Making sense of data practices

Laura Ellis has been writing this week about solving business problems with data (link). The alert to her post came shortly after another link had taken me back to a presentation by Dan Weaving in 2017 on load monitoring in sport (link). A separate alert had drawn my attention to two Cassie Kozyrkov articles, one on hypotheses (link) and the second on what great data analysts do (link).

I have all these as tabs in my browser at the moment. They joined the tab holding David Snowden and Mary Boone’s (2007) discussion of a leader’s framework for decision-making (link).

These five connections make for fascinating reading. A good starting point, I think, is David and Mary’s visualisation that forms the reference point for the application of the Cynefin framework:

They observe “the Cynefin framework helps leaders determine the prevailing operative context so that they can make appropriate choices”.

The 2007 visualisation was modified in 2014 when ‘simple‘ became ‘obvious‘ (link). Disorder is in the centre of the diagram wherein there is no clarity about which of the other domains apply:

In a book chapter published in the year 2000 (link), David notes “the Cynefin model focuses on the location of knowledge in an organization using cultural and sense making …”. Laura, Dan and Cassie provide excellent examples of this sense-making in their own cultural contexts.

Many of my colleagues in sport will appreciate this slide from Dan’s presentation that exhorts us “to adopt a systematic process to reduce data by understanding the similarity and uniqueness of the multiple measures we collect”:

… whilst being very clear about the time constraints to share the outcomes of this process with coaches.

Photo Credit

Arboretum – Bonsai (Meg Rutherford, CC BY 2.0)