As director of analytics at WorkReduce, I wanted to share a glimpse at what a 'day in the life' looks like in my role. I hope you'll find some valuable tips along the way.
[ What is a day in the life like in your role? If you'd like to participate in this series, reach out here! ]
Every day is different when you work for a global media agency
Each brand has a unique position with extremely detailed characteristics, experience, and culture. My job primarily comes down to telling insightful stories using data, whether that is for pitch decks, experience strategies, quick perspectives, or to gauge brand value.
Advice for succeeding in an analytics role
Any time you are working in analytics, knowing the platforms and tools isn’t enough. You must have a unique understanding of the stakeholders’ interests. Understand the story your stakeholders will react most positively to. Then try to prove your hypothesis, gather the facts, and present your case. Sometimes what you want to be true and what is true are not the same!
I would add that having a deep understanding of how any data are collected will give you a leg up in any scenario.
Acquire specific skills or talents
It’s not necessarily a skill, but being curious has helped me tremendously in my career. It pushes me to find the answers to obscure questions, even if it means a late night or early morning. Additionally, consider the following:
- Understanding business objectives will always help you frame your inquiries more impactfully.
- Learning how technology all fits together helps you use tools and not be used by tools.
- Be careful when you listen, take notes, and clarify questions. This is very important, especially if you present something that attempts to answer a complex question.
Learn how to grow your career in analytics
Training and practice are great, but you can’t beat real-world experience. If you’re just starting, you may have to volunteer or intern with a company that needs analytics. You can also do a lot of analytics using free tools. Excel is a great place to start building charts and reports. If you are looking for real-world data, just Google “Free datasets” –there are thousands and thousands of huge datasets that anyone can use, many of which are funded by your taxpayer dollars!
Before applying for an analytics role, you should check your ego at the door. You will be wrong a lot. Telling a factual story with data is just as much art as science.
[ Check out essential career advice from 37 award-winning CIOs! Get a variety of insights on leadership, strategy, and career development from IT executives at Mayo Clinic, Dow, Aflac, Liberty Mutual, Nordstrom, and more: Ebook: 37 award-winning CIOs share essential IT career advice. ]