Do I want to know it, or do I NEED to know it?

I was listening to an obit on Walter Cronkite when one of the speakers said something interesting, paraphrasing, “In TV news today, the focus is on information we all want to know. That wasn’t what Walter did. He focused on what we NEEDed to know.”

How does that impact business use of metrics? We are too adept at taking in information that we want to know about, things that we think are critical to success, but we may be missing critical metrics that actually matter, but we’re not looking at them – either because we don’t think they matter right now, or we don’t want them to matter. Even operational metrics need to be acted upon be a human, and if the human don’t bite, something important may get missed.

So, in honor of Mr. Cronkite, I’m going to ask myself the question today: Do I want to know it, or do I NEED to know it?

Thanks Walter, you’re still changing American lives.


Jeremy Shapiro is an executive in HR at a leading financial services firm, working on talent analytics. Formerly a Senior Vice President of the Hodes iQ Talent Management Suite at Bernard Hodes Group and is a co-author of the HR metrics book Ultimate Performance. Jeremy has coached hundreds of companies in recruiting and HR technology solutions across industries and sizes. Jeremy is a frequent speaker and author on HR technology topics and HR Business Intelligence topics, such as SHRM, IHRIM, the Human Capital Institute, and more. He is a frequent contributor to articles and whitepapers on HR Business Intelligence. Jeremy holds a Masters of Science in Information Systems from NYU and a B.A in Economics from Rutgers University. Specific topics of research include HR metrics, talent management technology, and next generation recruiting technologies.

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Talent metrics and human capital analytics galore.                                                                        

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Cornell ILR, Metrics that Matter: How HR Analytics Impact the Bottom Line, June 3-4, 2014 or November 13-14, New York, NY

HBR Webinar (Recording) - Competing on Talent Analytics November, 2011

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