Data Lists

Top 10 Ways to… Skip the Listicles and Make Better Business Decisions


Listicles. They are all over the Internet. If you want to know how to eat right, how to work out more efficiently and how to improve your finances, you will surely find a list online offering neatly packaged lists of tips. For example, a quick web search produces countless (literally!) ways to improve our health and wellbeing:

  • 8 Tips for Healthy Eating
  • 27 Health and Nutrition Tips That Are Actually Evidence-Based
  • Dr. Oz’s Top 10 Health and Fitness Tips of All Time
  • 45 Best Health Tips Ever
  • 10 Health Lifestyle Tips for Adults
  • And on and on and on

As the song goes, “It’s enough to drive you crazy if you let it!”

You can find similar lists for businesses and organizations. If you’re a leader trying to determine where to focus your limited time and resources, there will be listicles available to help you make a decision.

I don’t begrudge the idea of listicles in general. They are omnipresent because, in these complex times, we want to simplify our challenges. Whether we are trying to improve financial performance, enhance services, or adjust to market disruptions, we’re striving to bolster our organizations and serve our customers. Listicles are easy to read and they reinforce the idea that other people and other businesses have similar challenges. Seeing a finite number of solutions gives us a checklist of what we could be doing.

Today’s blog post isn’t a listicle because we suggest a better approach to evaluating decisions. Before turning to Google to find the latest list, reflect within. Explore what big questions you have. What data do you have? What data do you need? What do the data suggest at first glance? How about when you dig deeper?

Let the data dive inform your strategy. You may have enough data to form initial conclusions and begin developing your strategy, but you should leave open the possibility that you need more data.

Now you’re ready to implement your new initiative. However, it’s not enough to sit back and watch. Actively engage with your project by collecting more data and analyzing the results in real-time. Compare the results against your roadmap and your goals to make sure you’re getting the impact you expected.

Explore the data, inform your strategy, and engage with your initiative in an ongoing process.

Creating this organic lifecycle provides you the means to create your own Top 10, Top 25 or Top 50 lists.

D+R International has nearly three decades of experiences helping organizations sort through challenges and priorities. We understand how overwhelming and frustrating this kind of work can be. We also recognize that a one-step-at-a-time approach often works well. Starting with something is better than doing nothing at all.

What’s on your list of things we can do to help you succeed?