A Few Snippets From “Secrets of Analytical Leaders”

From the book Secrets of Analytical Leaders

Analytics have evolved a lot over the last 25 years.


On the business need for Analytics

A chief responsibility for any CEO in today’s business world is to build and to continually evolve the most effective strategy for mining and then leveraging the data that can make a difference within an organization.

Using information to make smarter decisions, develop better products and improve Business IQ

Through analytics, companies have the ability to use information to make smarter decisions, to develop better products, to improve overall customer satisfaction and to increase profitability. Analytics can become a sustainable resource that provides a competitive advantage because it helps improve business IQ.

Seeing connections and and imagining new ways to solve old problems…

people who live at the confluence of disparate approaches and opinions have a broader perspective. They see connections and possibilities that others miss. They speak multiple languages and gracefully move between different groups and norms. They continuously translate, synthesize, and unify. As a result, they imagine new ways to solve old problems, and they reinvent old ways to tackle new challenges. They are powerful change agents and value creators.

About Analytical Leaders – The Purple People…

They are not “blue” in the business or “red” in technology, but a blend of the two, hence purple. Purple people are true analytical leaders, and they are the central focus of this book.

The book is about Analytical Leaders and how they leverage information.


Terms like Big Data, Data Science, Data Engineering appear everywhere. Some people think it is the next frontier and others think it is all hype.

My company builds tools for discovering, tracking, gathering information. We were thinking of providing the next layer of tools (InfoAnalyzers) to make sense of all that information.

Before jumping in, I wanted to get some sense of the underlying need for analyzing data. Like you, I have some intuitive understanding but wanted to get a better sense of what the leaders in this space think. It is a constant quest and an exciting journey.

I accidentally came upon a page titled “A for Analytics” when I was searching for another book. The evolution graph was so fascinating that I paused my search and started reading. Fortunately, I have O’Reilly Safari subscription so jumping into this book took only a couple of clicks.

These snippets from the early portions of the book are just a sample. Hopefully I will have a lot to talk about after reading the book. If you want to get an over view this presentation by  Wayne Eckerson: Secrets of Analytical Leaders is a good starting point.

Daily Links May 20, 2011kill

Source: Check page alerts, InfoMinder, Infostreams and Twitter Stream

Top 75 College Education Tweets and Twitter Accounts  via @onlinecourse
Unemployed, educated, and indebted, more Millennials seeking work beyond U.S via @onlinecourse

Hacker Monthly  Hacker Monthly – checkout the special issue on startup stories. I found this via YC News and a @checkpage alert.

Growing need for data heads  US will need 140,000 to 190,000 more people with “deep analytical” and data analysis skills. A bigger more surprising number is  the  need for 1.5 million more data-literate managers.  Now let me go and Google ‘data literate managers’. From indeed.com:

Data Literate Managers jobs nationwide (about 1,704 jobs).
Data Literate jobs nationwide (about 4,827 jobs).

Quite a skill gap.  Go and do a job search on LinkedIn for Data Scientists. The last time I looked there were about 16. They may hire more, now that they had a good IPO.

WeekendHacker A boutique network of developers & designers. Find help for your (very) small projects. I did not find much on the site when I registered. I got an email confirmation asking me to email projects to a given address. But the concept of a market for small apps is interesting.

Life Long Learning for Keeping Engineers at the Fore

From “Two Score and More: A Lifetime of Learning for Keeping Engineers at the Fore”

I suggest the Lifelong Learning Imperative truly is a grand challenge.

Here’s why: The scope is not only ambitious, it is bold. It encompasses engineers at all ages; it embraces engineering at all stages.

It’s also a good time to consider the difference between “being an engineer” and “becoming an engineer” – and the ways that lifelong learning can make a difference in the lives of individual engineers, in the innovative and competitive capacity of our economy, and in the vibrancy of the profession of engineering.


My journey began when I heard a podcast on how Science is drowning in data on Real Science and how Scientists are turning to Cloud Computing to solve some of the problems. This took me to the research funded by NSF (about 5 million dollars to 14 Universities) on a wide variety of problems from Data Analytics to Visualization.

If you want to take a little peek into the future and some of the problems concerning nations, it is good to track organizations like NSF. What do they fund? Why do they fund it? What were the results? What happened to the technology built, lessons learned? Is there an opportunity to use these as a base for a business? Or simply as research data?