Unless you’re a serial entrepreneur well on your way with a 5th startup, then much of the work involved with your new business is something you’re doing for the very first time. Indeed, corralling the many moving parts, activities and people to get the business up and running smoothly is tough enough. Doing so while taking all the right actions is near impossible.
That is, unless you develop business intelligence through data analysis to provide some much-needed guidance.
Too Busy to Stop to Analyze Data?
When you’re being pushed and pulled in 50 different directions as the CEO, a focus on data is the last thing on your mind. That’s data collection and review. That comes later, you convince yourself.
Well, actually… not so fast.
While the opinions of different staff members will vary depending on their previous experience in the industry and their unstated biases, the data doesn’t lie. For instance, by tracking the sales day-to-day and week-to-week, it’s possible to spot trends faster than waiting for a monthly report.
How Data Can Be Useful to Entrepreneurs.
For startups with a limited amount of capital which they need to stretch out until profitability or be forced to enter a new funding round to give away another chunk of equity, it’s far better to do business smarter.
By using early data, the CEO and marketing team can examine what is working, what needs an adjustment in approach or design, and those initiatives that simply aren’t performing. This type of review is useful when adding new features to an SaaS or when developing a range of physical products around a connected theme.
Instead of running the business by feel, data analysis provides a valuable second opinion. It’s also an impartial one with an absence of emotion which is beneficial when it’s necessary to be painfully honest at the upper levels about how the startup is really performing.
Data Analysis is An Advanced Field.
Data analysis has grown as a subject. It now commonly incorporates different related topics such as econometrics, advanced forecasting using analytical data, data analysis and big data econometrics too.
For leaders interested in delving deeper into the subject matter, the data analytics certificate from Boston College provides an in-depth online training over an eight month period divided into 8-week term blocks of study.
Whether you want to create more accurate forecasts of your startup’s financial future, run different analyses and filtering to confirm various possible scenarios, or to begin to integrate big data thinking into a startup business framework, these are all covered in this type of certificate. Furthermore, it can form part of a future Master of Science in Applied Economics degree, if so desired.
When analyzing data from the first day of business, it’s possible to avoid mistakes and take additional steps in the right direction. Continuing to invest in areas that aren’t showing promise when the data is there to prove it is then avoided. This leaves more capital available to fund sensible expansion projects and to survive as a startup through to eventual profitability.