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Why you should be data-informed and not data-driven

Data driven vs Data informed

The blind spots of a data driven culture

  • Leading vs lagging indicators
  • Impact of participation vs volume
  • Impact of context

But, how do you prevent subjectivity in a data informed culture

How to create a data-informed culture

  • Understand what user behavior is driving the metric, don’t use the metric as is. Any experiment analysis should have a set of hypotheses outlining what user behavior might be causing the metric to move. If possible, validate these with additional user research.
  • Ask if you are measuring the right things ? Is this a leading indicator or a lagging indicator ? What are the effects on sub populations ? What are the blind spots in your measurement? How will you cover for them?
  • Think about the context of the data. What was the user experience for this experiment? What else is going on in the system that this change is a a part of , that might affect this ?
  • Force yourself to consider all the opinions of why the results of the analysis might be wrong. Play devil’s advocate.
  • When you have imperfect data, use first principles.
  • Always, always, keep the user in mind. This is the holy grail that wil determine the success of a data informed culture.



Elijah McClain, George Floyd, Eric Garner, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, Michael Brown, Oscar Grant, Atatiana Jefferson, Tamir Rice, Bettie Jones, Botham Jean

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Uzma Barlaskar

Growth @WhatsApp. PM @Facebook. Former Entrepreneur (CEO, PatternEQ). Stanford MBA. Still an engineer at heart . Find me on twitter: @uzmabarlaskar