Data Drowning Information Overload Anti-Stalling

I blogged recently touching on an alarm bell. When someone does not want something to be bought, and they attempt to drown proponents in data. Endless reams of the stuff.

Then I came across this piece for my anti-inertians dreams; The Status Quo Is Risky, Too.

Here’s a key part, as written by Liane Davey;

If executives on your team are endlessly asking for more information, effectively stalling any decisions or progress, try getting the team to put some boundaries in place.

You can use questions like, “How much do we need to know before we can make a good decision here?” or “What would it take for you to have 80% confidence in this path?” or ”What is our window for making this decision?”

By calling attention to the indecisiveness and helping your teammates get more comfortable with acting in the absence of complete information, you are more likely to get traction to move beyond the status quo.

Sure, I can already grimace at objection handles of the hidebound.

‘We need to know as much as possible and no less and we’re not there yet.’

‘We need as close to 5-9s as poss confidence.’

‘Better miss the window than rush the call.’


I’ve been known to put up a slide about this. Even using an old pic of my toddler self laughing loud on a beach. And scrawled quickly on a whiteboard too. In a non-hostile prospect environment it can certainly get the juices of converts bubbling;

everyone loves _______, but no-one likes _____.

Fill in the blanks, mister prospect please.

There’s actually two answers applicable here; ‘to buy’ & ‘to be sold’ as well as the real kicker in this scenario, ‘progress’ & ‘change’.

This prompts the conversation you want. Which leads to a framing of the boundaries referred to above in your favour to limit the machinations of the obstructive.

In fact, whenever you get even a first sniff of anybody pulling this gigadata trick, you must fend off the likely escalating chaos early. Treat any such move as a mere preliminary incursion and set out to create boundaries immediately. Do not let data demands fester.

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