How to Create and Grow a Successful Data Strategy

George Firican
3 min readOct 24, 2022

The process of creating a successful data strategy depends on key players of the organization. For the business to succeed you need a data strategy that is in line with the business strategy, of course keeping in mind the business goals, vision, and mission. Data strategy has key pillars such as data management, privacy, and literacy that should be considered when being implemented.

In this episode, we speak to Dora, a successful business technologist with 25+ years of experience who shares her insights on having a successful data strategy. She envisions that different folks have to contribute to creating a data strategy and having the right people with the right roles to implement it. Also, Dora emphasizes that organizational culture plays a role in creating the data strategy. Tune in to listen to these and much more!

Lights On Data Show — How to Create a Successful Data Strategy

You will want to hear this episode if you are interested in:

  • [01:40] Background information about Dora
  • [03:07] Why should an organization have a data strategy
  • [04:47] Connection between business strategy and data strategy
  • [06:45] Team involved in making a data strategy
  • [08:06] Timeline for putting up the data strategy
  • [09:41] Key pillars of a data strategy
  • [14:44]People’s culture and data management
  • [17:46] Organization foundation for data strategy
  • [19:44] Assessing readiness for data strategy
  • [22:00] Cost of fixing data
  • [24:02] Business context of IT
  • [27:05] Third-party involvement in managing organizations’ data
  • [33:30] Implementation of data strategy
  • [35:27] Dora’s favorite success story in implementing a data strategy

Notable Quotes

  • Data strategy is about how we manage business data to get a better understanding of who we are working with, our customers, suppliers, and external stakeholders.
  • You cannot have a successful data strategy without thoughtfully and meaningfully connecting to business goals.
  • It takes a lot of people and the right people in the right roles to have a successful data strategy.
  • There is a need to have data that is well managed, and well-governed especially when it comes to better analytical KPIs.
  • We are going to do a greater job monetizing our data when we stop being reactive, trying to fix it, and focus on making data that has a global impact like master data and KPIs.
  • For a successful data strategy, pay attention to data literacy.
  • No matter how great the technology is, it’s people who are gonna use it so it’s important they are engaged.
  • Assessing the readiness of data strategy has to do with the culture of the organization. Are people ready to accept change?
  • What works better is the culture of collaboration and working and listening, respecting each other’s views, and putting heads together to get a better outcome.
  • To understand the business context of IT, technical folks need to work together with business folks.
  • Data strategies are about the business and not about the data itself.
  • It takes a lot of hard work, being very thoughtful, and being very intentional about which line can solve a business. It’s not about data engineering and writing pipelines.
  • The critical factor for a successful implementation of a data strategy is having the right people in the right roles. It takes resilience for the person driving it to reinforce the data strategy.

About Dora Boussias

Dora Boussias is a business data and technology leader with deep domain expertise in data, analytics, enterprise architecture, and digital transformation; accustomed to walking the line between Business & IT, comfortable with driving change at global organizations, and focused on making a meaningful impact on the organization and its ultimate beneficiary, be it patient or customer.

Leading with authenticity, empathy, inclusiveness, and resilience, strives to drive trusted partnerships to define, design, and implement cross-functional solutions that balance strategic direction with pragmatic needs, simplify processes, boost operational efficacy, and bring timely, relevant, high-quality data for the right business decisions.

Currently and throughout most of her career in leadership roles of enterprise-wide reach, Dora has had the opportunity to make an impact with her work at global organizations such as Stryker, GE, and Prudential. Her 25+ year career includes exposure to Financial Services, Healthcare/Medical Technology, and Retail.

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George Firican

Data governance & BI professional, ranked among Top 5 Global Thought Leaders on Big Data, founder of and Co-Host of the Lights On Data Show.