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Enablement… Unlocking the Power of Knowledge

Bringing a new tool or process to your business it is as much exciting as it is daunting. If you are the one that managed to bring the new solution, you most probably are a big fan of the tool or process and already can see the world of possibilities that this new adventure may bring. The efficiencies it can create, the business opportunity and savings, as well as, the opportunity to scale and further develop.

Now, it is time to make all the business see and share your vision and enthusiasm.

But how to do this? What options is the business willing to adopt?

Once the strategy has been defined and the leadership support identified, every software journey should start with deployment, environment setup, governance and roadmap definition.

At the same time the adoption strategy is delineated and the decision of a centralised approach versus a self-service one is taken into consideration.

Independently of the type of approach the business takes, there are certain needs that are paramount for a successful adoption and solution development:

I- Unique point of entry for all things data related. This can be an intranet site or an educational platform.

II- The definition of user types. Not all users are the same nor are their needs.

III- What constitutes success to you and your business?

IV- Define learning paths, structure that helps our users define their learning journey, as well as, their team leads outline their Personal Development Plans.

V- Ensuring that support will be available, as well as, activities that promote learning in a safe and enjoyable environment.

VI- Not overlooking the effort recognition.

VII- Facilitation of cross-functional or cross-area contribution.

Driving adoption and enablement, shouldn’t be one solution fits all type of approach. Each company is different, and, each community will have their specific ways of working and engage with change.

With this in mind, let’s see the following use case:

The objective – Introduce a new software (Tableau) in a self-serve manner expecting users to embrace the new technology, learn and upskill to an expert level at their own pace.

The challenge – users many times are overwhelmed by big changes, digital solutions and the perspective of learning a new technology. In addition, if no time is allocated for upskilling, then other priorities will overtake the need to learn a new toll.

A labour of love and dedication

Possible Approach:

Luckily enough, Tableau is one of the few tools where we can find heaps of information, experience sharing and support.

Following the Tableau Blueprint, we can draft our strategy and correspond each activity to a stage of the blueprint.

For the objective above we will concentrate in the Proficiency & Community portion of the Blueprint, more specifically the Education.

The ultimate goal is to build a community that is self-sufficient and empowered to follow the path that best suits their needs in a self-serve manner.

Even in a self -served platform, users may feel overwhelmed by the amount of content made available to them. Not knowing yet, where they want to go, type of journey they wish to follow and what value that will add to their career.

A need for On-boarding process, value stories and structured learning paths (skill belts) becomes very evident.

The On-boarding process, may have many forms, it can be a welcome path with links, videos and invite to a 1:1 chat with one expert or it can be an open call where we can not only showcase what is available to the users, but also showcase a value story and a Tableau demo.

Value stories, are a way to document change and value in a business. These are of extreme importance, not only for new users but also for leadership. In the remit of a new user, it will have greater impact if the value story is already one of our business, however sometimes that isn’t possible, so sharing the value or success stories from similar industries, can create the empathy intended.

Catering for all the needs, entails creating different types of users. Within a business, we need:

  • analytics evangelists (Ambassadors)

  • tool experts or subject matter expert (Data Champion)

  • users that need the technical know-how of how to use a tool but don’t wish to be experts (Creators)

  • users that need to know how to consume analysis or create ad-hoc analysis themselves (Explorers)

Once we have user types, is now time to structure leaning paths for each of those users.

Inspired by the Fi Gordon skill belts, I have created four skill belts, each with five stages (with exception of Data Champions) that are built upon each other and with tests at the end of each stage to ensure quality.(Please have a look at the skill belts here).

The progression should be tracked via a Tableau dashboard or via a learning platform such as Degreed. When completing each stage, the user is awarded a certificate and an e-signature badge. Their line manager is also notified of the successful completion of each stage.

This allows easy navigation through PDPs (Personal Development Plans), business recognition and gamification within teams.

This way, any user knows which steps to follow, allows also communication with the Ambassadors and analytics team, growing the community and ensuring the success of data and analytics within the business.

Thank you for reading, please stay tuned as I’ll keep expanding on this topic.



Adoption –transfer (conversion) between an old system | way of working and a target system | way of working in an organisation (or more broadly, by anyone).

Enablement – ‘the action of giving someone the means to do something’

Self-serve – ‘using the resources available to you to learn about almost any desired subject matter on your own initiative, without guidance or prompts, undertaking research and learning from self-found materials.’

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