The Decoded Company | Leerom Segal

Summary of: The Decoded Company: Know Your Talent Better Than You Know Your Customers
By: Leerom Segal


In today’s fast-paced, data-driven world, our workplace environments and management techniques are lagging behind. The book ‘The Decoded Company’ by Leerom Segal explores how to tap into the potential of big data, predictive analytics, and ambient information to transform the way organizations function and value their employees. The book delves into how traditional management techniques are becoming obsolete and how modern companies can better engage and inspire their talent by leveraging data and technology, leading to improved overall performance.

The Importance of Data Literacy

Many companies are still using outdated management techniques that fail to engage today’s knowledge-based workforce. This has resulted in disengagement and poor performance from employees. However, the key to success lies in data literacy – the ability to find, evaluate, and use data effectively. With the help of big data and predictive analytics, businesses can create a more engaging workplace and boost productivity.

Ambient Data and the Power of Predictive Analytics

In the past, marketers relied on zip code segmentation to reach high-income households. However, with advancements in technology, big data and predictive analytics have become game-changers. Retail giants such as Amazon, Target, and Netflix leverage big data to predict shopping and viewing habits and provide personalized recommendations. Ambient data – information generated from everyday activities like shopping – combined with traditional self-reported data offer powerful insights. Algorithms allow sellers to connect the dots and make disturbingly accurate predictions. For instance, Target accurately estimated pregnancy stages by analyzing buying habits. However, companies must factor in the human element when embracing data-centric approaches, as customers may take offense when sensitive information is mailed without consent.

Decoded Companies: The Power of Workforce Data

Decoded companies gather and analyze both ambient and self-reported data to uncover what drives their organization and make it more effective, productive, and profitable. For instance, when Bank of America analyzed the ambient data from employee emails, it discovered that the most productive call center representatives were those with the closest connections to other reps. The bank encouraged them to socialize and, as a result, reduced call times by 23%, saving $15 million. Larger organizations accumulate significant amounts of data from sources like swipe cards and online calendars, which reveal insights about their employees to the company. With adaptive learning, data can be used to create algorithms that learn from user behavior and adapt accordingly. By using the data their workforce generates, any organization can make informed decisions about their people, rather than conform to standardized policies which act like a straitjacket. Technology, algorithms and databases exist to support building the necessary data sets.

Genome: A Powerful Tool for Building a Personal Workplace

The book discusses how the use of ambient and historical data can help create a more personalized workplace. Klick Health, a digital health agency, uses Genome to track employee progress, issue training, and improve project management. The tool combines weekly project status reports with ambient data to provide real-time feedback and insights, helping managers avoid past mistakes and make informed decisions. Genome is a “Sixth Sense” that gives leaders a competitive advantage by saving time and money and creating a warm and personal workplace.

The use of personalization to target consumers’ needs is widespread in the retail industry. Yet, it is surprising that companies do not apply the same principles within the workplace, even though an organization’s success greatly depends on the talent, depth, and commitment of its employees. The book highlights that using behavioral and ambient data to understand and serve employees not only makes good business sense, but it also creates a personal and warm workplace.

Klick Health’s Genome, a centralized database of employee information, helps track employee progress using ambient data. Instead of relying on traditional annual performance reviews, personal dashboards display near-real-time data about each person’s progress. This allows employees to adjust their work right away, ultimately improving their performance.

With Genome, Klick managers and leaders use the Gene Sequencer tool to shorten the experience curve for employees. By analyzing every project the company has conducted, new project managers can get suitable training at the precise moment they need it. Genome enhances the training’s effectiveness as it recommends and delivers training based on an individual’s needs. The system alerts program managers when a project appears to be going off track, providing valuable insights to prevent repeating past mistakes.

Genome is not just limited to measuring employee performance. It also provides individualized dossiers for travelers to catch up on important client news and information before upcoming meetings. It combines email travel requests with calendar information to understand who is going where and when. The tool generates meeting agendas and knows who needs to attend what meetings, saving significant time and money.

Managers at Klick Health benefit exponentially from using Genome. They gain an enhanced sense of intuition and informed decision-making, making it an essential competitive advantage. Through Genome, Klick Health shows that personalization is a valuable tool that is equally useful in the workplace.

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