Data --it's part of our personal and professional lives. But how exactly are we using it to improve our lives?
Meaghan Connell and AJ Yager of Praxis Metrics spoke about this topic during a recent Leads to Growth podcast. They helped the audience to see that data isn't really that intimidating. They also showed how data can be used strategically to improve business practices.
Using data in a productive way will help you to make better business decisions, all while making your life less complicated and more enjoyable.
What Exactly Is Data - And Why Is It So Important for Entrepreneurs?When it comes to the topic of data, the word "simple" doesn't often come to mind. Most people find analyzing data to be a rather daunting, or perhaps even boring, prospect.
But if your eyes glaze over at the idea of analyzing data -- you're not alone. AJ is someone that can't stare at a spreadsheet for more than 12 seconds without feeling like he's going crazy.
However, he still appreciates data and what it can do for him.
So, what is data? Basically, it's synonymous with information.
As AJ puts it, it's information that can draw out a path in front of you. Once you know and understand the data, you are better able to figure out which direction to take your business.
Meaghan pointed out: "The more information you have, the more knowledge you can attain, and the more wisdom you can gather."
Meaghan and AJ are an awesome example of taking data and turning it into something useful. Some goals they've achieved include:
- Staying healthy and fit
- Maintaining a healthy relationship (they're engaged)
- Traveling the world
- Founding Praxis Metrics, a business that helps companies eliminate waste and make better decisions based on their own data
- Successfully running a remote business
- Leveraging their sales and marketing to attract new clients
- Coming back from their around-the-world adventures with bank accounts that are heftier than when they left.
Use Your Data to Increase Productivity and SuccessWhile many business owners might think of data as a "necessary evil," Meaghan and AJ want entrepreneurs to start viewing it differently. Gathering, processing, and evaluating data will give you the information necessary to run a successful business.
Your purpose in gathering data isn't just to gather as much of it as possible.
The goal is to:
- Learn how to ask the right questions (so you don't waste any time)
- Separate the data
- Let the data tell a story that helps you get the results you want in life and in business.
Stop Wasting Time and Focus on Your IPAsDoesn't it feel like there's not enough time in the day to achieve what you want? Nearly everyone feels this way, but is it really true?
When meeting with clients, one of the first things Meaghan and AJ do is have the client track their time for two weeks. Does tracking work?
Meaghan gave the example of one client who realized that if he hustled and focused his efforts on income producing activities (IPAs), he could cut his work schedule down to two days a week.
What to Do with All That Data - Asking the Right QuestionsIn order to save your precious time, you have to know what to do with the data you're given. And the best thing you can do is ask the right questions.
Think about your business goals. What do you want to achieve? What will it take to achieve that? Put your goals down on a whiteboard or Excel spreadsheet.
Then, review your data and ask:
- What needs work?
- Where you can save time?
- What's already being done that's propelling you toward success?
Find a Data System That Works for You to Get Where You Want in Business and in LifeMeaghan and AJ offered up some wonderful gems of advice on our podcast. We hope you'll be able to listen to the full episode.
One of the main takeaways is that you've got to find a way to make your data work for you. Once you find the best system of data collection and analyze it properly, you'll be able to improve many aspects of your life and reach goals faster than ever.
Don't be afraid of data -- let it work for you. Embrace it, learn from it, and start living your best life ever!
Would you like to free yourself from data overload and learn to better analyze your data? Check out the Praxis Metrics website and blog, or contact Meaghan directly with your questions.