Communicating Analytical Results

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One of the most difficult challenges facing analysts in organizations is effectively communicating the results of their work on a timely basis to their decision makers. This is important because analysis often underlies decisions, and decision makers cannot always wait for the analyst to complete their work. Also many of the decisions that are made about competitive business matters rely on data inputs that have a short shelf life.

In other words, the intelligence generated about competitive actions is only useful to the enterprise for a short time period before it becomes out of date, at which point, it no longer has the ability to deliver competitive advantage.

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Description

Analysts must place considerable attention on delivering their findings to, and gaining the attention, understanding, confidence, and ultimately trust, of their decision makers. Presenting results to decision-making clients is one of the vulnerable areas where intelligence, insights and other strategy-related processes can fail.

There are numerous options for presenting results, and these include:

  • Face to Face briefings
  • Written reports and briefings
  • Presentations in Meetings, Seminars and Workshops
  • Email/instant messaging
  • Web based solutions and systems

Whatever method is chosen, this paper expands on  the different types of reports available to analysts as well as the communication difficulties analysts face.  For example, Table 1 outlines the key considerations when communicating across cultures and countries.

In order to develop and keep their clients’ trust, analysts must constantly acquire and enhance an in-depth understanding of their enterprise’s business, industry, and markets. Additionally, they must always relate their key conclusions and recommendations back to what is important to their business. If they do not, they will have little ability to persuade their customers, build their influence, or impact business decisions.  Good communication is key.

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