Divide and Conquer

There really is something to be said about dividing up your council to work on separate issues and then reconvening to discuss and approve the results. I’ve used this technique recently for some of the issues on our tracking sheet that ‘just won’t go away’. You probably have these too… whether they be important but nagging issues with the legacy systems or a business unit who just won’t respond so you can close something out. In any case, over time, these outstanding issues will multiply and the best method I’ve found it so assign them out to your stewards to have them worked on. I’ve also found that there are a few keys to success when doing this.

The first key to success is to provide support. As someone who represents that Data Governance Office, you should always be ready to provide support to the data stewards. Whether this means helping them identify a key resource or matching them up with an IT SME; the more that you support the stewards, the more willing they will be to take on the data issues as their own cause.

The second key to success is to set expectations from the beginning. Do you expect that they close the issue out by a certain date? Or, do you just want them to research it and have results and recommendations within the month? Whatever it is, make sure they know up front. One thing is for certain, if you don’t let them know of your expectations in the beginning, 80% of them will not meet them. You want to be on the other side of the 80/20 rule.

My final key to success is to identify a leader for the issue and to then have that leader identify their team. The leader is generally the closest person to the issue. Having them identify their team puts some responsibility and ownership squarely in their lap.

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