Within the context of effective association business planning, there may be occasions where you are required to perform data analysis. Whether you working with data that you have collected or have been given data that someone else has collected, we’ve got a few suggestions to help you better prepare and stay organized throughout the planning process.
- Ask questions. People are usually happy to give their opinion so take a moment before you get started to ask the people around you questions. Not only will this help you refine your focus, but it will save you a lot of time in the long run.
- Make access clear. Is there a clear agreement that you have access to ALL of the relevant data you will need? You can sign a non disclosure agreement to cover your bases for any special areas that are outside of your regular duties.
- Define your boundaries. Avoid getting lost in the data by establishing what is inside and outside the scope of your analysis…before you get started.
- Define your objective. It may sound obvious, but digging into data without a clear focus on what you’re looking for will cause confusion and set you back.
- Reorganize. Once you know what you want, reorganize the data in a way that suits you. For example, create a spread sheet so you can effectively collect and summarize your data and analysis.
- Get a second opinion. Get in touch with a key contact within your organization and bounce your preliminary findings off them. A second pair of eyes can prevent you from going off on irrelevant tangents.
So the next time you are asked to create a draft of your long term financial plan or opportunity analysis you’ll have these 6 tips to keep you ahead of the game.