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Women in analytics

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  • metabrown
    The analytics professions have more participation by women than any other STEM field - nearly half of analytics professionals (statistician, data miner, data
    Message 1 of 19 , May 19, 2014
      The analytics professions have more participation by women than any other STEM field - nearly half of analytics professionals (statistician, data miner, data analyst, and so on) are women. Despite this, some analytics conferences include few women as speakers and some people are claiming women in analytics are rare. They must not know where (or how) to look!

      I have vowed to write about 10 outstanding women in analytics each week for at least a year. You suggestions are welcome - please tell me about women who deserve recognition and would be good candidates for speaking at a conference. Do you know someone who has written a book, held an important position or done some excellent work in web analytics, or any analytics field? Please drop a line!

      Here's the latest post:
      Meta’s Binder Fulla Women in Analytics: Episode 4

        Meta Brown

    • Jim Sterne
      Hi Meta - I would LOVE to have more women speak at the eMetrics Summit. You ll find that the criteria for us event producers is: 1. Brand Name Company that
      Message 2 of 19 , May 19, 2014

        Hi Meta -

         

        I would LOVE to have more women speak at the eMetrics Summit.

         

        You'll find that the criteria for us event producers is:

                    1. Brand Name Company that will foster ticket sales

                    2. A brilliant story to tell that is very much in keeping with the theme of the event

                    3. A good story teller.

         

        If you know someone who has held an audience's attention for 40 minutes talking

        about some fascinating aspect in digital analytics... please drop a line!

         

          -------------------------------------------------------------
           Jim Sterne
        jsterne@...
          +1 805 965 3184 x 4
          Founder
        eMetrics Summit
          Author  Social Media Metrics
          Chairman
        Digital Analytics Association
          Blog  Twitter

         

        From: webanalytics@yahoogroups.com [mailto:webanalytics@yahoogroups.com]
        Sent: Monday, May 19, 2014 8:32 AM
        To: webanalytics@yahoogroups.com
        Subject: [webanalytics] Women in analytics

         

         

        The analytics professions have more participation by women than any other STEM field - nearly half of analytics professionals (statistician, data miner, data analyst, and so on) are women. Despite this, some analytics conferences include few women as speakers and some people are claiming women in analytics are rare. They must not know where (or how) to look!

        I have vowed to write about 10 outstanding women in analytics each week for at least a year. You suggestions are welcome - please tell me about women who deserve recognition and would be good candidates for speaking at a conference. Do you know someone who has written a book, held an important position or done some excellent work in web analytics, or any analytics field? Please drop a line!

        Here's the latest post:
        Meta’s Binder Fulla Women in Analytics: Episode 4

        Meta’s Binder Fulla Women in Analytics: Episode 4

        It’s suggestion week! Actually, every week is suggestion week, so keep cluing me in about accomplished women in analytics, but this week is special, because every single person on this list came to

        Preview by Yahoo

          Meta Brown

      • Katy Norris
        Love it! Thanks for taking the initiative. -Katy Katy Norris | Director, Analytics & Online Support | TakePart 331 Foothill Rd | Beverly Hills | CA | 90210 |
        Message 3 of 19 , May 19, 2014
          Love it! Thanks for taking the initiative. -Katy

          Katy Norris | Director, Analytics & Online Support | TakePart
          331 Foothill Rd | Beverly Hills | CA | 90210 | O: 310.246.7761 | C: 323.683.6086
          TakePart.com | ParticipantMedia.com | Pivot.tv

          From: "'Jim Sterne' jsterne@... [webanalytics]" <webanalytics@yahoogroups.com>
          Reply-To: "webanalytics@yahoogroups.com" <webanalytics@yahoogroups.com>
          Date: Monday, May 19, 2014 11:02 AM
          To: "webanalytics@yahoogroups.com" <webanalytics@yahoogroups.com>
          Subject: RE: [webanalytics] Women in analytics

           

          Hi Meta -

           

          I would LOVE to have more women speak at the eMetrics Summit.

           

          You'll find that the criteria for us event producers is:

                      1. Brand Name Company that will foster ticket sales

                      2. A brilliant story to tell that is very much in keeping with the theme of the event

                      3. A good story teller.

           

          If you know someone who has held an audience's attention for 40 minutes talking

          about some fascinating aspect in digital analytics... please drop a line!

           

            -------------------------------------------------------------
             Jim Sterne
          jsterne@...
            +1 805 965 3184 x 4
            Founder
          eMetrics Summit
            Author  Social Media Metrics
            Chairman
          Digital Analytics Association
            Blog  Twitter

           

          From: webanalytics@yahoogroups.com [mailto:webanalytics@yahoogroups.com]
          Sent: Monday, May 19, 2014 8:32 AM
          To: webanalytics@yahoogroups.com
          Subject: [webanalytics] Women in analytics

           

           

          The analytics professions have more participation by women than any other STEM field - nearly half of analytics professionals (statistician, data miner, data analyst, and so on) are women. Despite this, some analytics conferences include few women as speakers and some people are claiming women in analytics are rare. They must not know where (or how) to look!

          I have vowed to write about 10 outstanding women in analytics each week for at least a year. You suggestions are welcome - please tell me about women who deserve recognition and would be good candidates for speaking at a conference. Do you know someone who has written a book, held an important position or done some excellent work in web analytics, or any analytics field? Please drop a line!

          Here's the latest post:
          Meta’s Binder Fulla Women in Analytics: Episode 4

          Meta’s Binder Fulla Women in Analytics: Episode 4

          It’s suggestion week! Actually, every week is suggestion week, so keep cluing me in about accomplished women in analytics, but this week is special, because every single person on this list came to

          Preview by Yahoo

            Meta Brown

        • joebull714
          Just out of curiosity where are you getting the stat that the field is comprised of almost 50% women? I recently posted a position in my group and the female
          Message 4 of 19 , May 20, 2014
            Just out of curiosity where are you getting the stat that the field is comprised of almost 50% women?  I recently posted a position in my group and the female to male ratio in applicants is not close to 50/50.  Also did a quick count on DAA members in PA via the directory and saw what appeared to be 1/3 female names.

            Granted my quick scan could be an anomaly but I would be curious to know the demographic composition of the DAA member base. (age, gender, location, industry, titles, salary ranges, etc)
          • andremafei
            I really enjoy learning from Hilary Mason: Hilary Mason http://www.linkedin.com/in/hilarymason http://www.linkedin.com/in/hilarymason Hilary Mason
            Message 5 of 19 , May 20, 2014
              I really enjoy learning from Hilary Mason:

              Hilary Mason


              Machine Learning Techniques for Analysing Web Data | Udemy 


              But sorry Jim, she already was in eMetrics: 

              André Mafei
              Upmize.com.br
            • Jim Sterne
              I m going to copy the Digital Analytics Association s Executive Director, Mike Levin, to see if we have this info handy.... Mike? ... Jim Sterne
              Message 6 of 19 , May 20, 2014

                I'm going to copy the Digital Analytics Association's Executive Director,

                Mike Levin, to see if we have this info handy....  Mike?

                 

                  -------------------------------------------------------------
                   Jim Sterne
                jsterne@...
                  +1 805 965 3184 x 4
                  Founder
                eMetrics Summit
                  Author  Social Media Metrics
                  Chairman
                Digital Analytics Association
                  Blog  Twitter

                 

                From: webanalytics@yahoogroups.com [mailto:webanalytics@yahoogroups.com]
                Sent: Tuesday, May 20, 2014 6:27 AM
                To: webanalytics@yahoogroups.com
                Subject: [webanalytics] Re: Women in analytics

                 

                 

                Just out of curiosity where are you getting the stat that the field is comprised of almost 50% women?  I recently posted a position in my group and the female to male ratio in applicants is not close to 50/50.  Also did a quick count on DAA members in PA via the directory and saw what appeared to be 1/3 female names.

                 

                Granted my quick scan could be an anomaly but I would be curious to know the demographic composition of the DAA member base. (age, gender, location, industry, titles, salary ranges, etc)

              • metabrown
                You can find a detailed explanation of how I reached that conclusion, including many statistics with source references in The STEM Profession that Women
                Message 7 of 19 , May 20, 2014
                  You can find a detailed explanation of how I reached that conclusion, including many statistics with source references in The STEM Profession that Women Dominate The STEM Profession that Women Dominate | SmartData Collective

                   



                  One of the interesting statistics you'll find is this: the last time that the Bureau of Labor Statistics investigated this, it found that women were a slight majority of statisticians.
                • metabrown
                  Thanks, Jim Sterne, for opening that door. I hear you saying that you d love to have more women speak at emetrics Summit. That s great to hear. You and I have
                  Message 8 of 19 , May 20, 2014

                    Thanks, Jim Sterne, for opening that door.

                    I hear you saying that you'd love to have more women speak at emetrics Summit. That's great to hear. You and I have not met, but I have heard much about you, and always good things.

                    emetrics Summit was not one of the events that inspired me to start my series of posts on women in analytics. It's not particularly familiar to me, as I have not spoken at or attended this event. Since you brought it up, I took a look at the speaker roster for your next event, which happens to be right here in my home of Chicago next month.

                    If I have counted properly, 9 of 34 speakers are women. That's about 26%. The data that I've found (see The STEM Profession that Women Dominate http://bit.ly/smartdata030 for specifics) leads me to believe that 40-50% of analytics professionals are women. My own professional experience suggests that web analytics is one of the areas where women are well represented. Most analytics events that I attend have a greater proportion of women speakers: typically 30-40%. So, with 26% female speakers, emetrics Summit isn't leading the way in gender diversity, but you're doing much better than some others I know.

                    You say that these are your speaker criteria:
                    1. Brand Name Company that will foster ticket sales
                    2. A brilliant story to tell that is very much in keeping with the theme of the event
                    3. A good story teller.

                    Although you mention brand name companies first, I notice that many of your Chicago speakers are from companies that are not familiar to me. I don't claim to know nearly every worthwhile company on the scene, but I suspect that I am no less aware of company names than the average prospective attendee. A couple of the speakers are independent consultants whose companies are small and not, so far as I can see, exceptionally famous.

                    So, what's your process for finding speakers? Whatever you may be doing, why do you do it that way, and how confident are you that your process is getting you speakers who meet your own three criteria?

                    Back to women in analytics. If you will to have a peek at the posts in Meta's Binder Fulla Women, I think you could spot a couple of candidates from the kinds of companies you desire. I select the women there based on their professional accomplishments, not the brand names of their employers, and I don't focus on any one area of analytics, so they won't all be what you are looking for, but it's a start. Forty women have been profiled so far, and I have vowed to add ten more names each week for at least one year.

                    Meta's Binder Fulla Women:
                    https://www.linkedin.com/today/author/5384688-Meta-Brown

                    Now, I ask myself a question: Does Jim really want more women speakers? And, as a meeting organizer, is he willing to make an effort to get them? Since I have heard lots of good things about Jim, my answer is yes to both questions. And since there are not many speakers at the event, adding just a fairly small number of additional women to the speaking roster would shift emetrics Summit's representation of women from mediocre to outstanding.

                    But it's one thing to say you'd love more women speakers, and another to take the required action. There's nothing wrong with inviting people to drop you a line about good female speakers, just as I ask people to drop me a line about women to profile. However, you know enough about analytics (and people) to understand the limitations of that approach.

                    I'm investing time each week to find and publicize ten women in analytics, women whose professional accomplishments are significant and who have something to teach others. I want to get the names out, yes, but I also want to make a point: there are plenty of women in this industry. If I can find them, so can anybody else. If you're not succeeding in that, if men outnumber women by more than 2:1 on your speaking roster, are you satisfied? Does including female speakers mean enough to you to change your process?

                    Here's how I would dig for women who meet your stated criteria:

                    You mentioned brand name companies, which makes me think of the Fortune 500. So, I took a look at Fortune, and saw that Walmart is number 1. Do I have a contact there? Yes, one of the women mentioned in my recent posts is at Walmart. She's in HR analytics, not a match, but I could call her and ask for referrals. Or, I could start by searching LinkedIn for women at Walmart whose roles might make them good candidates. I did that search, and it took only a few minutes to look through the results and spot likely candidates - women in consumer analytics positions or marketing with an emphasis in analytics. I found 16 of them right off the bat, here they are:

                    1.       Lauren Nadalin Hawks  Senior Marketing Manager, Category Marketing at Walmart.com, Walmart Stores

                    2.       Susan Asghari  Senior Manager, Multi-channel Targeted Marketing at Walmart.com

                    3.       Mia Junghae Lee  Manager, AB testing at Walmart.com

                    4.       Sangeetha Thelapurath  Master Data Management, Walmart

                    5.       Elissa Friedman  DMM Merchandising - Home, Appliances & Outdoor Living at Walmart.com

                    6.       Sarita Kusuma Yeldandi  Director of Multichannel Innovation at Walmart eCommerce

                    7.       Martha Walsh  Director, Global Customer Insights & Analytics - Health & Wellness, Consumables SBUs at Walmart

                    8.       Sue Butler  Director, Global Customer Insights & Analytics at Walmart

                    9.       Sharmeelee Bala  Director Global Analytics & Visualizations at WalMart

                    10.   Jolene Lakey  Senior Data Scientist- ISD - Global Customer Insights, Enterprise Information Management at Walmart

                    11.   Libo Yu  Senior Manager II, Data Analytics at Walmart

                    12.   Jessica Brewer  Sr. Director Total Rewards at Walmart eCommerce

                    13.   Deborah Williams  Program Director at Walmart

                    14.   Mickey Mericle  Vice President, Customer Insights & Analytics, Walmart US

                    15.   Michelle Miller, MBA  Project Manager at Walmart

                    16.   Deanna Miranda  Program Manager at Walmart, Vendor Management Office


                    Now I have brand name candidates, but I don't know if they can communicate, right? Still, I have one good contact at Walmart. I could pick up the phone, call her and explain what I need, run my list past her and ask for the scoop. And then I would repeat for the other 499 companies in the Fortune 500 (or whatever your concept of "brand name companies" may be).

                    No doubt you will recognize this process as "networking." It's the same process that you use to find jobs, customers and other things you really, really want. So, I ask you, would you consider actively networking to find more women who meet your criteria? I can’t hunt them down individually for you, but I will continue to post new names each week, and if you want introductions to any specific people in my network to help you in your quest for qualified women speakers, I will be delighted to make those introductions.

                  • Wandering Dave Rhee
                    Hi, Meta, and All, I want to begin by thanking you for all your contributions to this forum, both directly as with your last post, and indirectly, by letting
                    Message 9 of 19 , May 20, 2014
                      Hi, Meta, and All,

                      I want to begin by thanking you for all your contributions to this forum, both directly as with your last post, and indirectly, by letting us know when you publish valuable articles on your own site.

                      I confess to have been mostly gender-blind when it comes to looking at analytics practitioners, and more importantly, analytics leaders. When I wonder why that is, and when I consider what implications this has for our profession, as well as for my own daughter, I find I have to go back and do a little bit of analysis, which is entirely appropriate for the topic! :-)

                      From the beginning of my analytics career on the client side, I was always the manager or co-leader of an analytics team. Most of the people whom I reported to were male, but none had analytics in their title. Their responsibilities were typically broader (e.g., VP Web, VP Marketing, etc.).

                      Of my own direct reports, about two-thirds were female. Including dotted-line reports (e.g., brand planners with some responsibility for analytics), just slightly more than half were female.

                      I always work diligently to prepare each of my team members to assume leadership roles, even it means promoting them into management positions in other organizations (helping them get better jobs in other departments or companies!), when internal promotions are too rare, or too meagerly compensated, to match their reasonable growth path and rate in a high-demand growth industry.

                      Because I do this aggressively, I will even push someone into a non-supervisor manager role before they are completely ready, in order that they might increase their value contributions to the industry. Of course it's better when they can contribute to my company, but because our industry has been relatively fluid, in terms of people moving between organizations, I know that even helping a competitor in the short term ultimately helps my own organization in the medium term. And in fact, it often helps my organization in the short term too, as I am then able to attract top talent specifically due to my reputation as a manager actively involved in the career growth of my direct and indirect reports.

                      What I have seen from the many individuals I have encountered in multiple related fields (web and marketing analytics, marketing science, financial investment analytics, social media and social business analytics. primarily), is that the women I've worked with have not been the top ones in their organization with an analytics-specific title. That is, if they were a senior manager of analytics, they reported to a director of analytics, not a director of marketing. If they were a director of analytics, they reported to a VP of analytics, not a VP of Finance, or a country head.

                      The propensity for conference speakers to be drawn from as high in an organization as possible, as long as their title links to the conference subject matter, may explain why the conference speakers I know are predominantly male rather than female.

                      However, just because this may explain the phenomenon, we certainly have no excuse to allow this to remain the status quo.

                      Because I identify myself simply as an analyst, and not as a male analyst, it had not occurred to me until now that perhaps the example I set for my daughter (as I mentor her to think analytically about nearly everything) is one of a male analyst, rather than simply as an analyst. I don't think I said that very clearly, but what I mean is that I now think it would be helpful for my daughter to see as many potential role-model analysts who are female as male. Or more importantly, as many analytic thinkers who are female as male.

                      My first instinct is to offer push-back, and say that there is no gender bias. However, when I carefully consider the issues encountered by the women I have mentored, and compare them to the issues encountered by the men I have mentored, I see a quantifiable difference in the types of issues which arise.

                      Generally speaking, most critical issues have to do with mis/communication styles. Simplified, the conflicts are analyst v. "stop talking and tell me what to do" pragmatist; or thinker v. doer; or detail v. big picture. A secondary-level examination (carried out just now in my head, based on my fallible memories) reveals that these are often gender-based. Or at least, the manner in which the conflicts tend to be managed is gender-biased.

                      In Harvard professor Carol Gilligan's book, In A Different Voice (1982), it's made clear that most default behaviors that are accepted as norms are generally male-generated, which means that female-generated behaviors are, by definition, "ab-normal". If, for example, boys pick up colored blocks in the sequence blue - red - green, and girls pick them up in the sequence red - blue - green, an observer might say that the boys' sequence is normal, and the girls' sequence is abnormal. They may even go so far as to label the boys' sequence 1 blue, 2 red, 3 green, emphasizing that the girls' sequence goes 2, 1, 3, clearly "wrong."

                      My application of this principle to analytics is that I often notice women writing with a much clearer and well-reasoned voice, explicitly crafted so that the value generated is to increase the knowledge of the reader. (Several prominent women bloggers in our industry and related industries come to mind, you being one of the foremost.)

                      I also notice that most blogs authored by men tend to be either self-promotional, or own-organization-promotional. That is, the value they wish to generate is either to increase their own reputation (look how smart I am) or the sales potential for their organization (buy from us because we are thought leaders). The value they deliver to the reader is minimal, limited to "knowing whom to pay for more help," as opposed to "knowing what to do based on an experience and knowledge transfer from the author."

                      Naturally there are exceptions on both sides -- excellent educational blogs by men, and equally self-promotional blogs by women, but a non-analytical gut-feel from glancing at my RSS feeds seems to bear this out.

                      But our "norm" to date may have been to seek out speakers who are self-promotional (after all, they are the ones applying to be speakers), rather than those who are top speakers. (There may be similarities in professional politics, but I am too wise to draw that comparison here!)

                      Now, knowing Jim as well as I do, I would have to say you are exactly right in your assessment of him. He is a gentleman of the highest caliber, and the ultimate professional within our industry. Given his many, many contributions already (let's start with his founding of the WAA/DAA, and include his being a co-moderator of this very forum), I have no doubt that by the time he reads this, he will have already reached out to a number of the analysts you have cited, not because they are women, but because they are top analysts who fulfill the criteria for conference presenters.

                      I'm sure he will be thrilled if, by identifying more top speakers, it pushes out from the coveted speaker spots others (male or female) who do not meet those criteria as well. (Though in defense of eMetrics, which remains my conference of choice within our industry, the caliber of speakers is consistently significantly higher than those from the many other conferences I have attended, as measured by the value I have walked away with across several dimensions.)

                      One of the difficulties I think we will have to overcome is that inviting an analyst (regardless of gender) to speak at a conference, who is not the ranking analyst in their organization, will encounter resistance from whomever the ranking analyst is (presumably, their manager). To be blunt, asking a brilliant female blogger/teacher/presenter analyst to present, while passing up their primarily self-promotional male manager, will require tact and finesse.

                      Fortunately, Jim possesses obscenely large amounts of both, so this bodes well for upcoming conferences, as well as for the future of our industry.

                      For my part, as primary moderator of this forum, and as an active industry professional, I vow to remain vigilant for any gender biases in my own thought and behavior, as well as in any posts I see being published in this forum, and will seize every reasonable "teaching moment" as an opportunity to help each of us become more valuable to our profession, our organizations, and our communities.

                      In return, I ask from the entire forum that we each hold each other to the same highest possible standard of professionalism and ethics, which includes recognizing and then actively avoiding cultural bias, national bias, gender bias, just as we already actively attempt to recognize and avoid vendor bias, data bias, and other, easier-to-catch flaws that corrupt our analyses and our thinking.

                      Meta, I heartily applaud your efforts to propel the industry forward, not only in the areas mentioned in this post, but in general, for the way you share and promote clear thinking and analysis in all areas. May we all be so gracious and generous in service of our profession.

                      WDave

                      P.S. I see I neglected to address one point in particular from your post. You asked yourself, Does Jim want more women speakers? I think the answer is a qualified No. To be clear, I think Jim wants the best speakers available. If we know that half the potential qualified speakers are women, and significantly fewer than half of the chosen speakers are women, then it is clear the selection process is not yet optimal. The KPI (% female speakers) is not the goal (speaker quality), but they're highly correlated, and worthy of focus to drive process improvement.
                    • peter_oneill17
                      Interesting, I have found in London at digital analytics events that the mix has shifted from about 10% women to about 33% over the past five years.
                      Message 10 of 19 , May 21, 2014
                        Interesting, I have found in London at digital analytics events that the mix has shifted from about 10% women to about 33% over the past five years.  Definitely not at a 50:50 split as yet but we are getting there.  The event I run is free for anyone to attend so should be a pretty good representation of the market - no barriers.  A list of attendees can be found at Attendees - MeasureCamp London.

                        When we were organising speakers for first event, think we ended up with about half being women, not deliberately, just it matched the topics we wanted.  We only organised speakers for 80% of sessions at the first conference and 20% at the second conference, as wanted to use an unconference format.  So the last two events have had no prearranged speakers.  My impression is that a higher proportion of men are running sessions than the proportion of women.  But I know the best session from the second MeasureCamp was run by a women and some of the best speakers are women. 

                        So hoping we get to that 50:50 split in the future but I don't believe, based on the attendees at events in London (and other events in Europe), that we are there yet.  Interestingly, one women proposed in advance a session on women in analytics that only women could attend and got negative feedback from the community saying it wasn't required, we are all just analysts. 

                        Meta - can provide a list of some of the best women in digital analytics in Europe if that helps. I also know there are at least a couple of groups out there for women in the digital space (although not just analytics) e.g. Madrid Geek Girls

                         

                        .
                      • ajchen20002001
                        Paula Fedoris! Paula is an outstanding analytics leader that I had the honor to work for in the past. I learned a lot from her. As a seasoned marketing
                        Message 11 of 19 , May 21, 2014
                          Paula Fedoris! Paula is an outstanding analytics leader that I had the honor to work for in the past. I learned a lot from her. As a seasoned marketing analytics professional, she had deep knowledge about the industry and the practice, and had great strategic vision about the business. As a woman, she was more considerate and cared more for her employees' growth than her peers.

                          Paula Fedoris

                           



                          Audrey Chen

                          DirecTV

                             
                        • metabrown
                          Wandering Dave, You have used the old direct marketing technique of slipping the most important element in the PS. That’s where you brought up the matter of
                          Message 12 of 19 , May 21, 2014

                            Wandering Dave,

                            You have used the old direct marketing technique of slipping the most important element in the PS. That’s where you brought up the matter of speaker quality.

                            Everyone agrees that we want high quality speakers. But how should we define and assess quality?

                            To take one example, Jim Sterne has given us one definition of a high quality speaker, one who comes from a “brand name” company, has a compelling story and is a good storyteller. Without getting deep into how these things are defined, we probably share similar concepts of what those things mean. A brand name company is one that is well known to the prospective attendees. That might include the Fortune 500, and perhaps another 500 other prominent, businesses, nonprofits and government agencies. A good story means that you overcame obstacles to reach a goal. A good storyteller holds audience interest and leaves a lasting impression. Surely each name brand company has a few good storytellers in analytics, so we have a pool of thousands of high quality speakers to draw upon.

                            Another conference organizer might use a different working definition of a high quality speaker, of course. But it’s a rare conference that features more than a few dozen speakers, so unless the criteria are exceptionally restrictive, there will always be a relatively large pool of qualified candidates.

                            There are many women in analytics (see The STEM Profession that Women Dominate, http://bit.ly/smartdata030, for supporting data), far more than the handful that are needed to fill a few speaking slots for any given conference. But so what? What’s lost if women are excluded?

                            Look at any other aspect of life. If the last presidential election had been men only, Romney would be in the White House now. If you wanted to know the sales potential of a new product, you’d surely care about getting input from women in your market research. You wouldn’t think of excluding women when you are collecting data, because you understand that you could be blindsided by lack of the information you can get by including diverse viewpoints.

                            Do you think that diversity is any less important at a conference that professionals attend to get up to date information about their industry?

                            Last year, I spoke at the Big Data Conference. I asked members of the audience to raise their hands if they had heard of Nasty Gal. I suspected that one of the speakers, a woman, would know it, but nobody else in the room, and I was right. So what? What did it matter that a couple of hundred people, mostly men, hadn’t heard of one women’s clothing seller? Here’s what: Nasty Gal is arguably the fastest growing retailer of women’s clothing on the internet. It could be your competitor, an outlet for your products, a customer for you, but if you don’t have a diverse team, you won’t even know it exists.

                            Can we afford that kind of business blindness?

                          • metabrown
                            Yes, I would love to know about some of the best women in digital analytics in Europe!
                            Message 13 of 19 , May 21, 2014
                              Yes, I would love to know about some of the best women in digital analytics in Europe!
                            • Jim Sterne
                              Thanks Audrey ! Do you have any direct contact info you could send me off-list? ... Jim Sterne jsterne@targeting.com +1 805 965
                              Message 14 of 19 , May 21, 2014

                                Thanks Audrey !

                                Do you have any direct contact info you could send me off-list?

                                 

                                  -------------------------------------------------------------
                                   Jim Sterne
                                jsterne@...
                                  +1 805 965 3184 x 4
                                  Founder
                                eMetrics Summit
                                  Author  Social Media Metrics
                                  Chairman
                                Digital Analytics Association
                                  Blog  Twitter

                                 

                                From: webanalytics@yahoogroups.com [mailto:webanalytics@yahoogroups.com]
                                Sent: Wednesday, May 21, 2014 6:47 AM
                                To: webanalytics@yahoogroups.com
                                Subject: [webanalytics] Re: Women in analytics

                                 

                                 

                                Paula Fedoris! Paula is an outstanding analytics leader that I had the honor to work for in the past. I learned a lot from her. As a seasoned marketing analytics professional, she had deep knowledge about the industry and the practice, and had great strategic vision about the business. As a woman, she was more considerate and cared more for her employees' growth than her peers.

                                Paula Fedoris

                                Paula Fedoris

                                View Paula Fedoris's professional profile on LinkedIn. LinkedIn is the world's largest business network, helping professionals like Paula Fedoris discover inside connections to recommended job candidates, industry experts, and business partners.

                                Preview by Yahoo

                                 

                                 

                                Audrey Chen

                                DirecTV

                                   

                              • Jim Sterne
                                Well, Gee Willikers, Ladies and Gents! First, to both Meta and Dave - I am truly flattered by the attention and quite surprised by the devotion. My thanks to
                                Message 15 of 19 , May 21, 2014

                                  Well, Gee Willikers, Ladies and Gents!

                                   

                                  First, to both Meta and Dave - I am truly flattered by the attention and

                                  quite surprised by the devotion. My thanks to you both.

                                   

                                  Dave - flattery will get you everywhere.

                                   

                                  Meta, although you have not officially been to an eMetrics Summit - you

                                  have spoken at our smarter, younger sibling: Predictive Analytics World.

                                  Therefore, you are closer to the family than you thought  :-)

                                   

                                  My very deepest thanks for your Binders Fulla Women

                                  https://www.linkedin.com/today/author/5384688-Meta-Brown

                                  This is a treasure trove!

                                   

                                  It turns out there are quite a few determinant criteria for selecting good

                                  speakers that never see the light of day. My top three criteria (recognized

                                  brand, great story and great story teller) are an ideal - Nirvana... Reality

                                  is a bit more fickle. That explains why you were surprised, Meta, when

                                  you looked over the agenda for the upcoming eMetrics Summit in Chicago.

                                   

                                  Yes, many of the speakers are from companies that are not familiar...

                                  As a result, I will not sell as many tickets as I would like. But the second

                                  criterion - a great story to tell - this is my must-have in a speaker. A poor

                                  speaker from an unknown company with a good story to tell is better

                                  than just a brand name or just a good presenter. That's where the value

                                  is for the attendees - they take away practical information they can

                                  put to use.

                                   

                                  Finding companies that are willing to talk about their intellectual success

                                  in public is another dilemma I have faced year in and year out. Some

                                  corporate cultures simply do not allow people access to PowerPoint

                                  outside their walls. Internal gender politics are way over my pay grade

                                  when sourcing speakers.

                                   

                                  In Chicago, we will host the 63rd eMetrics Summit. Yes, I would like

                                  more women speakers, more minorities, more handicapable people,

                                  more international participants, more older and younger... but alas,

                                  I'm doing the best I can just to find good, informative, educational,

                                  stories.

                                   

                                  I am thrilled when somebody like Chauncy Cay Ford or June Li or

                                  Amanda Kahlow or Sujata Ramnarayan take the stage. I am proud

                                  when a woman like Allison Hartsoe (who spoke in SF and will be

                                  speaking again in Boston) comes to me for advice about public

                                  speaking and then then proceeds to score higher than me at my

                                  own conference!

                                   

                                  There - I now feel that I have sufficiently beaten my chest and

                                  declared that Some of My Best Friends are Women.

                                   

                                  With that out of my system, I thank you again, Meta. And that extra traffic

                                  at Binders Fulla Women? That's my IP address all over.

                                   

                                    -------------------------------------------------------------
                                     Jim Sterne jsterne@...
                                    +1 805 965 3184 x 4
                                    Founder eMetrics Summit http://www.emetrics.org/
                                    Author  Social Media Metrics  http://bit.ly/SocialMetrics
                                    Chairman Digital Analytics Association

                                    http://www.digitalanalyticsassociation.org

                                    Blog  http://emetrics.wordpress.com/

                                    @jimsterne http://twitter.com/jimsterne

                                   

                                • Wandering Dave Rhee
                                  Hi, Meta, My evaluation of a speaker s quality may be different than those of any conference organizers, so clearly I don t speak for anyone but myself. I
                                  Message 16 of 19 , May 21, 2014
                                    Hi, Meta,

                                    My evaluation of a speaker's quality may be different than those of any conference organizers, so clearly I don't speak for anyone but myself. I measure the value of my conference attendance by how much positive change occurs in my practice of analytics, that would not otherwise have occurred. That may mean I refocus on a certain technique, I refine or restructure a process, or perhaps even that I improve my communications with colleagues. Naturally, I am more likely to accept a suggestion for change if it is coming from someone whom I trust, either because I accept their credentials, or because I have some other social cues that make me perceive them as being trustworthy (authentic, knowledgeable, experienced, etc.). Evidence of prior success is certainly one of those cues, which means that someone who has achieved a high business rank, presumably due to the success of their analytics program(s), is more likely to gain my trust. In this, the fact that there are fewer high-ranking women in analytics means I have to (and will, now that I am aware of this bias) look harder and beyond mere title to find evidence of trustworthiness.

                                    As to your assertion that there are likely several analysts who are gifted storytellers within any large (Fortune 500) organizations, I would heartily disagree, based on my own experience working with global companies, whose analytics teams I have known well. While this is changing, I posit that there are far more analysts (female and male alike) whose skills for analysis far outstrip their ability to discover and present their findings in a compelling narrative. Which, of course, limits the success of the analytics program within their organizations, as well as their career advancement as individuals.

                                    Finding talented storytellers (of any gender) is, therefore, a more difficult prospect than I think you are proposing.

                                    I think perhaps you're raising straw-man arguments when you ask if diversity is important, or if gender-myopia causes business ineffectiveness. Of course those are true; of course I agree; of course those who accept such blindness are harming themselves as well as our industry.

                                    It is obvious (to me) that many industries are blind in one way or another -- the recording, print news, and automotive industries come to mind immediately. I agree that far more industries and organizations fail to see how their inherent gender bias is negatively affecting their ability to create and maintain a competitive advantage. And moreover, I want to assist our profession in assuming a leadership role in our organizations in eliminating all such biases, by helping individuals identify and eliminate them in their personal practice of analytics. However, I have only now recognized my personal gender bias, and so have a path of unknown length and tortuousness ahead of me to rectify my own thinking, as I begin to help others do the same. Thank you again for prodding me to take the first steps on that path.

                                    WDave


                                    On Wed, May 21, 2014 at 12:37 PM, metabrown@... [webanalytics] <webanalytics@yahoogroups.com> wrote:
                                     

                                    Wandering Dave,

                                    You have used the old direct marketing technique of slipping the most important element in the PS. That’s where you brought up the matter of speaker quality.

                                    Everyone agrees that we want high quality speakers. But how should we define and assess quality?

                                    To take one example, Jim Sterne has given us one definition of a high quality speaker, one who comes from a “brand name” company, has a compelling story and is a good storyteller. Without getting deep into how these things are defined, we probably share similar concepts of what those things mean. A brand name company is one that is well known to the prospective attendees. That might include the Fortune 500, and perhaps another 500 other prominent, businesses, nonprofits and government agencies. A good story means that you overcame obstacles to reach a goal. A good storyteller holds audience interest and leaves a lasting impression. Surely each name brand company has a few good storytellers in analytics, so we have a pool of thousands of high quality speakers to draw upon.

                                    Another conference organizer might use a different working definition of a high quality speaker, of course. But it’s a rare conference that features more than a few dozen speakers, so unless the criteria are exceptionally restrictive, there will always be a relatively large pool of qualified candidates.

                                    There are many women in analytics (see The STEM Profession that Women Dominate, http://bit.ly/smartdata030, for supporting data), far more than the handful that are needed to fill a few speaking slots for any given conference. But so what? What’s lost if women are excluded?

                                    Look at any other aspect of life. If the last presidential election had been men only, Romney would be in the White House now. If you wanted to know the sales potential of a new product, you’d surely care about getting input from women in your market research. You wouldn’t think of excluding women when you are collecting data, because you understand that you could be blindsided by lack of the information you can get by including diverse viewpoints.

                                    Do you think that diversity is any less important at a conference that professionals attend to get up to date information about their industry?

                                    Last year, I spoke at the Big Data Conference. I asked members of the audience to raise their hands if they had heard of Nasty Gal. I suspected that one of the speakers, a woman, would know it, but nobody else in the room, and I was right. So what? What did it matter that a couple of hundred people, mostly men, hadn’t heard of one women’s clothing seller? Here’s what: Nasty Gal is arguably the fastest growing retailer of women’s clothing on the internet. It could be your competitor, an outlet for your products, a customer for you, but if you don’t have a diverse team, you won’t even know it exists.

                                    Can we afford that kind of business blindness?


                                  • Judah Phillips
                                    The context of this email is Nasty Gal and the example given, which I think is not accurate. Of course I m all for greater gender inclusion and diversity in
                                    Message 17 of 19 , May 22, 2014
                                      The context of this email is Nasty Gal and the example given, which I think is not accurate. Of course I'm all for greater gender inclusion and diversity in all aspects of life and work.


                                      The likely reason people at a "Big Data" conference don't know about Nasty Gal is because they likely don't work on the UX, design, creative or business side in a fashion or apparel retailer. If you asked a competitive intelligence analyst or market researcher or marketer or executive or photographer or a digital analyst in that sector, they would know all about Nasty Gal's roots at eBay and CAGR. Additionally, not many smaller etailers have "big data" - daily data sizes and transactions are in the MB or GB and can be handled by standard technology - even for growth brands like Nasty Gal.


                                      Finally I don't see Nasty Gal as a prime example of either technology, analytics, nor big data excellence, so it makes total sense at a "big data" conference that people just aren't aware - because the brand isn't very meaningful in that business context. Not to mention the audience for Nasty Gal tends to be 18-34 years old - a bit different than the ages at most big data conferences regardless of gender. Finally the third party research I've seen indicates ~30% of the audience to Nasty Gal are male.


                                      As a straw man I think the Nasty Gal example doesn't make a good point at all, so you may want to rethink that as an argument for this audience, but I totally support your overall thesis and call out for greater gender balance and inclusion.








                                      Sent from my iPhone
                                    • metabrown
                                      So Judah, What questions would you prefer? Meta
                                      Message 18 of 19 , May 22, 2014
                                        So Judah,

                                        What questions would you prefer?

                                        Meta
                                      • Judah Phillips
                                        At a big data conference I would ask questions about big data and use examples from companies that have it. Judah Sent from my iPhone
                                        Message 19 of 19 , May 23, 2014
                                          At a big data conference I would ask questions about big data and use examples from companies that have it.


                                          Judah


                                          Sent from my iPhone
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