The Data & AI Podcast Ep. 2 – What is Data Literacy?

With the data space transforming at rapid pace, it can be difficult to keep up with the latest innovations―let alone understand how to best leverage them. In the age of AI, chatbots, and automation, what does it even mean to be “data literate”?

On this week’s episode of the Data & AI Podcast, Rockborne’s CEO Waseem Ali sat down with David Reed, the Chief Knowledge Officer at DataIQ, to talk about the modern definition of data literacy, and more.

Introduction to David Reed

David began his career as a journalist. He wrote about direct marketing, which was a hot topic at the time. Fast forward to 2005, and David started writing about data exclusively when he became the Editor of a magazine called Data Strategy. Then in 2011, he joined DataIQ as the organisations’ first staff member. He’s been there ever since.

DataIQ is a membership business that works with organisations to connect them to a network of likeminded peers, and to help them develop their personal and professional skills. The organisation also hosts a number of award ceremonies, such as the DataIQ100.

David has also written a book called, “Becoming Data Literate.” The book provides a roadmap for businesses to show them how they can embed the use of data into their organisations, so they get the most value from their data efforts.

What is Data Literacy?

According to David, data literacy is more than just the ability to read, understand and communicate with data.

While all this is important, for an organisation to be truly data literate, David says they need to develop a shared mindset and company culture that draws them towards things like evidence-based decision making, and ways of working that assume a trusted data asset is in place.

In other words, data-driven practices need to be fully embedded into a company culture and put into practice in day-to-day decision making.

How Can Data Leaders Help Boost Data Literacy?

To help foster a data-driven mindset, data leaders need to be two things: critical thinkers, and confident.

When it comes to critical thinking, this is crucial because data leaders need to know how to really drill into their company’s issues, and understand the root causes and the opportunities, and how data can help. They need to have a firm grasp of this, so that when they’re challenged about what they’re achieving, they have a clear answer.

The confidence piece is also key, because data leaders need to believe in the service they’re providing, so that other key stakeholders in their organisation have faith in their function. If they believe in the power of data, it’s a lot easier to persuade others.

Interested in learning more? Listen to the full episode here.

Posted in