Seeking Greatness. Unleashing Business. Liberating Data

Come join this session if you would like to engage in a lively discussion about your journey to become a great organization and a data driven one.

Data has grown immensely in our business and our lives. Big Data is now a reality. Data has become the Business Avatar. It may seem imaginary but it represents the real enterprise: Marketing, Products, Sales, Customers, Finance, Risk, Compensation, Service, Operations, Security, Fraud, Crime. Data now exists in such detail that it represents the real. Data can surface details and insights about ourselves and our business much more than we know. The digital business can is now reality. Liberating data can unleash your business. Liberating data should unleash your business and perhaps help it become great. It can be a strategic asset, one that differentiates a high performing organization from a mediocre one.

At the strategic level becoming data driven seems simpler, but at the tactical level is froth with challenges, barriers, pitfalls, conflicts and heavy costs. Business executives are rightfully skeptical about sponsoring data projects, as many large data projects fail to deliver its promise, waste valuable time and bleed material amounts of money. Yet the path forward is set, there is no turning back, your organization has to become increasingly data driven.

Craig will present business trends that will guide, nudge and pressure our organization:

  • The quest to be a great, customer oriented, differentiated, efficient and ethical organization
  • The continual increase in landscape complexity with new media, channels, platforms, and devices
  • The push to extract insight from granular data – towards individual behavior and touch points
  • The growing focus on accountability, performance and compensation
  • The innovative and disruptive business models, that use data to out speed and out smart competition
  • The mitigation of risks based on past failures and future scenario testing
  • The development and deployment of machine intelligence, sensors and the internet of things

Craig will facilitate a conversation on the pitfalls and opportunities in the business journey to become increasingly data driven. We will discuss specific examples resulting from questions like:

  • Why is perfectly accurate data representing business truth so elusive?
  • Why are many business predictions and forecasts off?
  • Why does data lend itself to selective use, human bias, abuse?
  • Why is the quest to understand customer behavior so challenging?
  • Why do many marketing campaigns fail to reach their goals?
  • Why is your organizations data alone limited? What is the promise and difficulty of using data from outside sources? Dun & Bradstreet? Thomson-Reuters? Google? Twitter? Facebook?
  • Why will algorithms and machine learning take more prominence?
  • Why are centralized models of data governance, data models, data standards, data architectures struggling?
  • Why is master data, meta data and reference data such difficult business cases to get approved?
  • Why is data politics here to stay? Why do data silos exist? What are its consequences?
  • Why is IT and the recruiting industry fixated on specific vendor data tools and technologies? Why is there lack of differentiation between a tool/application and data? business process and data?
  • Why is there confusion, misunderstanding and conflict between IT teams and business teams over data?
  • Why is data not effectively defining business strategy?
  • Why is data privacy in the context of Big Data essential for a sustainable and socially responsible organization?

So, come and participate in this conversation.


Craig Van Spall excels in providing highly technical data services that power smart digital enterprises. Tactical excellence. Strategic awareness. Goal driven. Discipline. Humility. Quality. Kindness.

As Chief Engineer, Advanced Analytics and Insight at Van Spall Inc. ( his mission is to deliver unmatched client satisfaction, business integration and insight, through highly technical data services, towards building smart digital enterprises.

Craig enjoys leadership, fitness, engineering, finance and performance. He is a student of people, organizations and the way things work. Craig contributes to specific boards, committees and causes towards being useful. He is an Engineer, MBA and certified in several tactical and strategic areas related to data and business.

Craig welcomes connecting via (email) | (Linkedin) | @CraigVanSpall (Twitter) | Craig Van Spall (Google+)



Jan 21 2015


8:30 am - 11:30 am


The Albany Club, 91 King Street East (near King/Yonge subway), Toronto, ON M5C 1G3.

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