Strategic Knowledge Map Analysis-My Dear Watson

Reliable data

The popular new British television show Sherlock, adapted from Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s detective stories, is great entertainment. It’s also an awesome way to think about the use of data to enable organizations seeking grant funding to make their business case.

Got Data?

A big part of Sherlock’s success is that he knows so many facts about so many topics. But more important, he has a knack for piecing together clues and facts from many sources to solve the case.

When you want to demonstrate how your way of doing things is worth the investment, you don’t want to miss any clues that might help make your business case. Many types of data, statistics, and facts are likely to be important to assembling strong evidence to make your case:

  • Communications with stakeholders, to check that your plans fit with what people want and need
  • Findings from related what others have done, to assess and improve your strategies, using existing studies
  • Tracking and evaluation, to find out the extent to which you are implementing your plans, successes and lessons learned along the way, and results you are achieving

Focused on Finding Solutions?

Another reason for Sherlock’s success is that he loves his “consulting detective” work so much. When he is working on a case, he obsessively concentrates on the problem, insisting on not letting anything distract him.

Similarly, to make the case for your achieve successful innovation in business, it helps if you and your team have a mindset of wanting real answers (even when they show that not everything worked perfectly the first time) and using findings to create and provide something of real value.

Putting It All Together

Another aspect of Sherlock’s method is that he can quickly piece together multiple pieces of clues from many different sources to provide a convincing recreation of what happened at the scene of the crime.

Finding the best strategies to achieve your goals and making the case for funding your activities also takes understanding of how many pieces of data fit together. Emerging systems-based techniques like Strategic Knowledge Map Analysis allow us to scientifically assess which plans are most likely to inform improved practices.

Do you want to make the business case for your organization like Sherlock solves crimes?  Elementary, my Dear “Reader” and Watson!  Make sure you have…

  • Reliable data
  • A mindset of wanting real answers and using findings to measure and achieve your goals
  • Understanding of how the data fit together to make your case

How might a “detective style” approach to making your business case benefit your organization?

Authors: Dr. Bernadette Wright and Dr. Ladel Lewis (Executive Team of Meaningful Evidence, LLC)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>