speaker180This year’s Institute of Asset Management lecture was given by cognitive psychologist and specialist in leadership performance, behavioural change and culture, Javier Bajer. Javier explained in a very engaging manner three fallacies about change and I thought the final one makes a good trigger for this blog post, namely, the view that changing behaviours and culture takes time, particularly if the beliefs that generate behaviours are not changed.

Javier suggests that it is not easy to change behaviours directly – for example, our approach to speed when driving a car. If we believe that speed cameras are mainly to generate revenue from fines for the transport authorities, we will slow down to the speed limit when we see a speed camera, but are likely to speed up again once we have passed the camera. If, however, we believe that excessive speed increases danger to pedestrians, other road users and ourselves, then we may be less likely to drive at an inappropriate speed – even if there are no speed cameras present.

Sbehaviours-and-beliefs-imageo, how about data?

Our popular Data Zoo considers the behaviours people exhibit relating to data and proposes a number of changes that can help encourage better behaviours relating to data. Most importantly, the Data Zoo illustrates how these behaviours are influenced by the organisational behaviours and attitudes towards data.

If we also try to change data beliefs, then better behaviours should result. What data beliefs are we trying to encourage in our managers and staff?

  • Data is a valuable asset to your organisation
  • Good data quality improves efficiency and profitability
  • Poor data quality is not acceptable – data quality can be improved
  • Everyone has a part to play in improving data quality
  • A task/job is not complete until all the required data has been provided to the required standard
  • When I am doing a task/job, I know when existing data is incorrect
  • Everyone has a part to play in improving data quality
  • If I know data is wrong, I can initiate improvements to this data
  • I know that when I create a new spreadsheet, I may be creating data problems for my organisation
  • There is no ‘silver bullet’ to improve data quality management approaches
  • Improving data quality levels will take time, possibly significant time

What other data beliefs would you promote?

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