Oct 17, 2018

Finding data in businesses where it does not exist.

1 comment

Hey BP,


On the same train of thought as my other post about LSS in the professional service industry, what types of data should one be looking for where it does not typically exist? Six Sigma by nature needs data to support benchmarking, measurement, analysis, and improvements. Are there non typical forms of 'data' that will do the trick?



Oct 17, 2018Edited: Oct 19, 2018

That's a great question. Finding quality data can be challenging to say the least. Let me answer this question with a simple example. Let's say you work for a consulting company and you want to understand how satisfied your customers are with the services of your company. A very traditional and direct approach might be to send out a customer satisfaction survey. Assuming your survey is designed correctly and your customers take the time to complete it correctly, you may be able to measure how satisfied your customers are with your company. An alternative approach might be to request one referral from each of your customers, the assumption being that any customer that refers your work is one that is happy. By counting the number of referrals you receive, you have an indication of customer satisfaction. This type of measure is often referred to as a surrogate measure. Very often, when we can't find data to directly measure what we need, we design or look for surrogate data that may point in the same direction. It's a tricky business that often requires the touch of an experienced coach.

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