The Data Driven Podcast, November 19, 2018

The Data Driven Podcast – Episode 01 – Gauthier Vasseur – Data and Digital Transformation


Welcome to the Data Driven Podcast in collaboration with Gauthier Vasseur and Michael Waitze Media.  Gauthier is the Executive Director of the Fischer Center for Data Analytics at Berkeley, Haas School of Business, a Professor at Stanford University, an Entrepreneur (Data Wise Academy) and an advisor to startups.

Gauthier noted that most people do not know that when he moved to Northern California, he took up surfing and started doing astrophotography.  He believes that one thing that they both have in common with data mastery is they all require life long learning.  The humility you get from learning about data leads to more curiosity which in turn leads to more learning…a true virtuous circle.

No company should be satisfied with mediocre usage and understanding of data.  The issue with the term Digital Transformation is the term Digital.  Gauthier argues that it is more than just being digital…it also requires a shift in your mindset.  He believes there needs to be an eagerness for design thinking, lean processes, understanding how to master data insights and being open to innovation.

One of the biggest  challenges with becoming ‘data driven’ is getting people over the fears of how data will impact their lives and roles at work.  This takes significant energy and a changing mindset.  It requires training and the teaching of some core principles.  Sometimes, the sheer amount of new data produced can seem overwhelming.

We also discuss some of the tools that Gauthier uses to begin to get people comfortable analyzing their data sets.  People must understand that you have to have a core business problem you are trying to solve and that at some level that requires you to take a side…with the onset of sophisticated tools, data analysis now becomes much more important that just creating statistical dashboards.

The key to companies becoming more agile, more innovative, creative and collaborative is insights and time.

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