Section 003, Instructor: Laurel Miller

Weekly Question #3: Complete by September 22, 2016

Leave your response as a comment on this post by the beginning of class on September 22, 2016. Remember, it only needs to be three or four sentences. For these weekly questions, I’m mainly interested in your opinions, not so much particular “facts” from the class!

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In your opinion, what was the most important takeaway from Maurice Whetstone’s talk on Thursday? What did you learn about the way data is used to make decisions? Relate your observation to the class material if you can.  If you did not attend class you cannot answer this question and this will be the question that you can miss without penalty.

51 Responses to Weekly Question #3: Complete by September 22, 2016

  • The most important takeaway from Maurice’s talk was that data is everywhere and in everything. He also went on to discuss how important meta data is. If people don’t know data about your data they will be less likely to use it. Also, I thought what he said about its not about who you know but who knows you was very important. The more people that know you and think of you when it comes to opportunities the better off you are. The way data is used to make decision at QVC was very interesting. Something as simple as tracking when the host says certain words spike the sales on a segment.

  • I felt that the most important takeaway was data is virtually everywhere and can be applied to anything in life. Mr. Whetstone went into why and how data is important and different jobs that you can do pertaining to data. As to how data is used to makes decisions, he was saying how you can use data to see how and when people started using QVC and how long they had been customers. You could use the information you find to see how and why they are still customers and how much they buy per year.

  • The most important piece of Maurice’s talk today for me was what data can affect. When he was discussing QVC using data and knowing when the commentator would use certain phrases more people would purchase that item was fascinating. Also when he said that he used data to find out that a company that sold silver was allowing customers to purchase silver cleaner. I never would have thought that data would have such an impact like that on a company. Lastly, the piece I would the most astonishing was when Maurice said that QVC uses to see how long customers have bought from them and why they are staying, having a loyal customer base is important to a successful company.

  • Besides class, Maurice further told us that data is essentially unavoidable. It is everywhere and it can affect our daily lives and it may even lead us to a right career path. There is data and data about data. Maurice gave us a good example of how data was used to make decision when he saw that his former company sold silver products but not silver polish. Even the smallest aspects of data can make a huge difference.

  • In my opinion, I think the most important key takeaway from Maurice Whetstone’s talk was the concept that ‘Data is the heart of everything’. He mentioned this idea all throughout his presentation and I truly believe that this concept is the one key takeaway that he wanted all of us to get out it. I really believe he hit the nail on the head with this idea because data is essentially everywhere around us. We accumulate and use data around us every second of the day and by using this type of data, we can learn more and apply it. For example, Maurice mentioned ‘metadata’ which is a terminology that we learned in the class lectures as well. He acknowledges that metadata drives our improvement in society with the continual changes/enhancements in companies to further advance the aspects of our lives. Metadata is just information gathered from data that can be used to learn about future trends that can be used to increase the success of a company’s goals. The raw data that we as consumers accumulate on a day-to-day basis is studied and metadata is created from that raw data to learn about the most successful and efficient way to achieve our goals as consumers. Data is essentially used by companies to learn about what works, what doesn’t, and how to improve from their consumers data.

  • One thing that I took away from Maurice Whetstone’s presentation is the fact that understanding and knowing how to use data is crucial, no matter what your profession. His real-life example of the team of different people that gathered data to help sell products was really cool because it illustrated perfectly how people with different jobs can come together to use data to improve their company. It’s all in the details, and all the details are in data.

  • The most important thing I took away from Maurice Whetsone’s presentation was how data is basically used in EVERYTHING. No matter what your major/profession is, you’re going to be dealing with data. I found it interesting to learn how QVC uses data to make decisions. For example, Maurice talked about how when on live TV they have employees watching the data of sales, when they go up/down/etc., and how they’ll communicate with the TV host on what phrases seem to boost sales the most. I found this very interesting. This isn’t an example I’d think of when imagining a job that works with data. Thus, further proving Maurice’s point that data is used everywhere.

  • The most important thing I learned from Maurice Whitestone was his ability to explain the importance of data and how it is essentially part of every business today. I also enjoyed his discussion about company culture and the role it plays in how successful you can be within a company. I found that his explanation of his previous work places also helped broaden my view on company culture and why choosing the right one is important for you to grow and succeed.

  • Probably the idea that stuck with me the most from Mr. Whitestone’s presentation was how data could be instantly simulated and fed back to the audience. By simply telling the host of a television program what to say, how much of it to repeat, and when to say it, Whitestone’s company was able to excite the crowd significantly based on observations of previous phrases and words spoken. Of course this can be, too, in part to the advance of technology and communication. However, Mr. Whitestone proved to me that you can assemble data from one source (the audience’s reactions), and then feed it back to that same source to get better results.

  • The most important takeaway for me was “not letting anyone treat you disrespectfully when it’s uncalled for” Maurice gave such a great and passionate life lesson speech which I truly appreciate and am grateful for. As for data, what I found out about data and it’s correlation to decision making was predictive or trending analysis on user/target audience feedback. In business decisions this is used to determine high-level product development meetings or tactical strategy meetings analyzing competitor buzzwords, trends, etc.

  • From Mr. Maurice Whetstone’s presentation, the most important takeaway in my opinion was the fact that there is no escaping data and that data is in the heart of everything. His passion for data really did show throughout his presentation. I have no doubts in any of his useful information and/or feedback, because data is in the root of everything around us especially with the growth of technology in the past decade, it will not only improve but keep growing and developing with the help of data at the heart.

  • Although the point of Mr. Whetstone’s presentation was about data, the main takeaway for me personally was his information about working at Urban Outfitters in NYC vs. at QVC in West Chester, because I may want to work at UO in NYC, and it was interesting to hear about how cold people are in the city. However, the most important takeaway from his presentation is that data is everywhere, and is used in every aspect of business (and other things). We learned that data is important in decision-making because without data to back it up, how do you know that you’re making a good decision? Also, metadata is very important, because you need to sort the data to identify it later. I never thought that metadata would be so important, but after the class’s discussion about how much can be determined from phone call metadata and Mr. Whetstone’s presentation, I understand how much metadata can tell you.

  • The most important point Maurice Whetstone made for me was the fact that his bosses, QVC’s CEO’s and “higher-ups” had to learn and accept that data is at the heart of everything. Data is at the center of QVC and the company completely relies on and runs around data. I thought it was very interesting to see the level at which QVC is making an effort to connect data across all countries and really make it an international project. He said it has been extremely difficult to make this international connection and they are years away from fulfilling that goal, but it is the start of a very important and necessary task.

  • One of the major points Maurice touched on is that data is the heart of QVC. He mentioned that QVC wasn’t like a lot of companies that are well known, popular and have physical stores or direct interaction with customers. However, the data and information the company gets and provides is what makes its operation possible and what determines what business decisions to be taken. Another thing I also learnt is that no matter what it would take or how long it may take, do not settle for just any job or career path if it isn’t what you’re content with.

  • I thought a major takeaway from Maurice’s presentation was how data is used in nearly every aspect of the business. Whether it’s for market research, choosing what products to promote, or determining how much of a product they will need, data is central to QVC’s operations. I thought it was interesting when he describe how they use metadata to ease cross departmental interactions.

  • The most important takeaway from Maurice Whetstone was how much data they really used in their company. What really stood out to me was how the one man who worked under Mr. Whetstone and a few co workers created the data to find what consumers liked, words that made them more interested in the product, and questions consumers had about the product. It was amazing how he found data that made the company better by selling more products. Data is used to make decisions by seeing what sells better, the time of day items sell better and what words they use to make items sell faster. Using data like QVC is related to our class by learning different types of data and what data is more important than others.

  • The most important thing I took away from Maurice’s speech was the real life examples he presented us from his own experiences at QVC. Learning about how QVC uses data while they are broadcasting in order to keep viewers attention was very interesting to me. Another thing I took away from his speech that does not entirely relate to the class material but relates to a future career overall is the understanding that not all jobs will be a 9-5 work day. Maurice talked about the different hours he had to come in or stay until to get his business done and I thought this was a great lesson for not only now but the future also.

  • The most important takeaway from Maurice Whetstone’s talk was how data is used in business and the reality that data is used for everything. Mr. Whetstone used his own experience to show us the importance of data in every daily life and it is used in very part of business and data is especially in relatively small and internet- based company. Also I noticed that company culture is a very interesting thing and it is very important to consider it before we choosing jobs.

  • The most important takeaway from Maurice Whetstone’s talk on Thursday is the fact that data is going to change the workplace and the decision making in the future. At QVC, data is central to everything they do and every decision they make are based on information derive from data. The company uses business intelligence software such as Tableau, which we will learn in class, to collect and analyze data and make inform decision.

  • One of the most interesting things that I think Mr. Whetstone mentioned during his presentation was regarding the culture of QVC and how important it was to him. He mentioned how he had worked at other companies before and in those companies people were not friendly at all. I think this emphasizes how important culture is to overall happiness. For example, I want a job after college, but not only do I want a job, I want to enjoy my job. Even if I like my work I am doing in the future, but don’t like the people around me or the nature of the company in general, I don’t think I will be happy with my career. But on the flip side, I could have the most difficult work at my job, but if the people around me make myself feel at home and comfortable, I am going to enjoy my life a lot more when I have to wake up for work in the morning. I think regardless of your major when listening to this presentation, I believe this is a very good takeaway anyone could have gotten from what Mr. Whetstone was saying.

    Regarding data and decision making, I didn’t realize how up-to-the-second QVC’s (and other companies) data analytics tools are. It is really cool to me how instantly his team is able to see the changes of data when it comes to a buzzword that a TV host says or the time a day in which a product is aired, and how because of these analytical tools, how the company can strategize and act upon these statistics. I think that this relates to the class material because if someone of the in QVC’s data department has a hypothesis about a strategy (such as using a specific buzzword more often), they can easily test it and falsify it as soon as they have the idea because they have the tools to do so right in front of them.

  • The most important takeaway from Maurice’s talk last Thursday was that data is continuing to shape the future. I learned that businesses use data to make decisions based on past successes and past failures. In order to stay consistent, or make changes, they must rely on the recorded data. One additional thing that stuck with me was Maurice’s quote: “It’s not about who you know, it’s about who knows you.”

  • The most important thing I learned from Maurice’s talk was how important data is in the world we live in today. There is so much data in the world today, learning to organize it all is very important. We can use the data to make more efficient business decisions that can effect the company and the consumer. Data helps people point pin certain problems and making it easier to find solutions that we once did not have the ability to do. I really enjoyed listening to Maurice talk and how he gave us new insight how data could be used in business.

  • The biggest impression Maurice left on me was not letting anyone ever disrespect you. I believe that that is a lesson that can be applied everywhere, not just in the workplace. Holding yourself in high-regard, and maintaining that image among others is one of the biggest steps towards success. If you don’t respect yourself, how can anyone else?

  • One thing that I loved about Maurice’s talk last week was how passionate he was about his job. The way he spoke made it easy for me to understand and listen to him, and it surprised me how much he has worked with data in his position on QVC. One take away that I had from his talk was when he said “to make sure you love the people that you work with, because you are going to see them more than you see your family”. When Maurice said this, it made me think about my past internship this summer. At my internship, company had a culture that was very welcoming and energetic. Every employee walked around the building with happy faces and no one was ever caught frowning. Being just an intern, we have a number of employees visit us everyday just to make sure we were doing fine. We were also treated as fulltime employees and not just interns, which was one of my favorite things. Thursday’s talk just made me hope that when I do find a full-time job, I want to be just as passionate about my job like Maurice was and I want to work with people who are always keeping their head up.

  • Maurice made some very good points, but I think one of the most important points he made was about metadata. Metadata is data about other data, which can very important and useful. Maurice said that if we did not have metadata, we could be completely lost with the data. We might not know what the data is about if we do not have metadata. Metadata is just as important as the data itself. I also liked how Maurice gave us life tips that will definitely benefit me in the future, he told us to be passionate about what we do and don’t go into something that you are not happy with because you will be doing it for the rest of your life. I enjoyed Maurice’s talk and I think it will benefit me in the future.

  • One of the most important takeaways from Maurice’s talk last week was the fact that data is all around us; we just have to know how to use it. Data can be used to make so many important decisions for a company and Maurice touched up on that with how much he uses data in his role with QVC. For example, when the data showed that customers from the beginning were still buying from QVC, it meant that there was a unique value that QVC was providing and that they should keep doing so to keep these customers. I also noticed how big he was on Tableau and how he uses it in his job. This makes me definitely want to learn how to use Tableau because having Tableau on my resume can give me an advantage when applying for jobs.

  • The main thing that I took away from Maurice’s talk is data plays a significant role in our daily life, because everything could be the data, and it could be comes from everywhere. Refers to the lecture we went through so far, he mentioned metadata as well, the data about the data, which can make finding particular instances of data easier. He also talked about how QVC make decisions using data, and how data affects different businesses. He shared the experience that when he first entering his current job, he feels every employees there are so nice; Finally, he gave us a short life lecture that saids: who knows you are much more important than who you know.

  • In my opinion the most important takeaways from Maurice’s Talk was that data is everywhere. Also, how important the data is in our life. Data has to be used in right way and data have to be found in the right place. When data is abused or data is wrong, it will mess up our life and work.

  • I enjoyed Maurice Whetstone’s talk especially because of his enthusiasm when he spoke about his job. I thought it was funny when he talked about the community at QVC and how positive and friendly everyone on a regular basis. Regarding data, the anecdote he told about his coworkers staying and working overtime to improve the overall quality of the show was very informative and it just goes to show that hard work pays off since they are working towards a patent.

  • In my opinion, the most important takeaway that I got from Maurice’s talk is that data is at the root of everything. As someone who isn’t particularly keen on working with data, I was interested to see him talk about everything that involves data and everything you can do with data. In the decision making process, data can be looked at as a way to see what strategies are working and which ones aren’t giving the company the results it is looking for. The fact that Maurice also talked about metadata and it’s importance means that people actually do apply the stuff we are learning in class in the real world. I am excited to see what working with Tableau is like because he seemed to be a big fan of the program.

  • Without data, every business decision is more or less a guess. Maurice’s talk demonstrated how the use of data improved QVC’s TV sales. The data-driven system immediately had an edge over the intuition-based system that the company had been using before. Obviously the human element is still important, but real-time data provides important feedback that allows for quick adjustments in business strategy, which leads to more sales.

  • The most important takeaway from Maurice Whetstone’s talk is that data is a highly valuable resource that all companies should utilize to identify trends and other insights to develop their business. In class, we discussed how most businesses are drowning in data and Maurice’s role helps to organize and get the appropriate data in the right hands to be analyzed. It is also important to turn data into information and knowledge in order to make it useful and give businesses an actionable insight.

  • The most important thing that I got out of Maurice’s presentation is that data is the heart of everything, and metadata is needed everywhere. I really enjoy his speech as it is very informative. I understood more clearly about what QVC is using data for as well as the system and the work environment there. Maurice is passionate when he talked about his job as a data architect. He also confirms that Tableau is significant in real world by introducing the market-research project that he and his team are working on. I think his project is fantastic as it helps boost the sales using metadata and I am looking forward to learning Tableau as well as how to use data in many aspects/fields!

  • I believed that Maurice explained that data is used in so many different ways. I thought it was very interesting that at his role at QVC he analyzes data by the minute rather that by the day at his previous job. Although, I think the greatest thing that I took out of his presentation is to not allow people treat you with disrespect.

  • According to Maurice: Assumptions will kill you, and Trust but verify. I was very happy to learn that someone made a successful career using these principles, which I support 100%. Also, it’s impressive that QVC monitors social media in real time to feed information about consumers’ reactions to line managers so they can tell hosts which catch phrases to use to increase sales. That’s marketing at your fingertips.

  • Being an employee at QVC (Quality, Value, Convenience), Maurice Whetstone expressed how data was in the heart of everything and could be anywhere. I remembered the story he told about how one of his buddies and a group of others innovated the way data was being used by tracking social media feeds when they aired their shows live. They were able to satisfy the demands of the customers, while proving that data is needed to make the customer and the business happy.

  • The most important thing I took from Maurice was that data is absolutely everywhere and in any business. Just in his job at QVC data is used in so many ways. The thing I found most interesting however, was the fact that people are monitoring cue words and phrases that sell more items on the live shows and then tell the hosts to say them more.

  • Mr. Whetstone was an extremely engaging speaker and it was interesting to hear his real world applications of big data usage. To me the most important takeaway was the advice and stories he gave about conducting yourself in the work place and the world of networking. This was the most important thing because it is applicable to all business professions regardless of major. In terms of data usage in regards to decision making, I found the part where he spoke about real time application of data on live television to be the most intriguing. Before his visit I mostly viewed data applications as solely being an analysis tool after an event. However, it was an intelligent decision QVC made to link real time social media to conduct their live TV promotions.

  • The most important thing I took from his speech was finding something you are passionate about as a career. When you are passionate about your job you will be more effective and happy. In the case of his co-workers, they went beyond their job description and figured out a major algorithm that helped improve QVC’s sales. By doing so they were rewarded with a paid trip and recognized company wide for their accomplishment. I am currently undecided at fox, and that lesson helps me out because I do not want to just dive in to a major until I know I would approach it like Maurice’s coworkers approach their job.

  • The most important takeaway from Maurice’s presentation was that data is important and its everywhere. Data is important no matter what field you work in as the world advances data is beginning to spread everywhere. It was interesting to listen to how data works at QVC and what he does with his team to improve the company. Maurice also talked about standing up for yourself and not taking disrespect which is something that is crucial to anybody’s career.

  • I was very interested to see a non-traditional role in the field of data analytics. As someone who is pursuing a career driven by data, I enjoy seeing the large array of opportunities. Maurice’s presentation was great in that he seem to really embody the culture of QVC. He portrayed it as a wonderful place to work and it seemed like he could not be happier their. His work intrigued me because his and his team’s responsibilities included solving problems that the company was not even aware of at the time.

  • The most important takeaway from Maurice is that data is everywhere. Without data the world would barely be able to function, you use it in everyday life and it’s very important. The most interesting use of data that he talked about was how some guy who worked for him created a whole new department by using data to give real time information to the host on QVC. They are able to see what creates spikes in purchases and get the host to do things like that more often to get more purchases. This is a great example of how data is used in everyday business life to improve it and why it is important.

  • The most important thing I took from Maurice Whitestone was that data is everywhere. Mr. Whetstone was a great speaker and it enjoyed hearing his prospective on data usage.The thing I found most intriguing is the real time data analyzing. I have never thought about the option that QVC (or other companies) are monitoring and analyzing the data as they receive it to improve their sales.

  • One of the most important takeaways from Maurice’s presentation was that he didn’t feel forced into his career. This truly resonates with me because he went through multiple jobs before finding QVC and that encourages not only me but others to not settle for something they aren’t happy and comfortable with. One thing I learned about data is that after it is analyzed it can be used to improve virtually anything. Not only that but it can be used to create algorithms that help companies function more efficiently.

  • I think the most important take away was to network and be respectful. I learned that data doesn’t have to be extremely complicated to make an effective good decision. You have to know what you’re looking at thus the importance of metadata.

  • I believe the most important takeaway from Maurice Whetstone’s presentation was the evolution of data usage for businesses. Companies around the world are now trying to get as much information as possible from the data they have; in turn, this has created a huge demand for individuals who possess the technical skills to interpret and use data. Another important part of his presentation revolved around the future of data usage, as corporations are using data to predict more trends than ever before.

  • I learned a variety of important lessons from Mr.Whetstone. It was very interesting to learn how he utilized big data as well as metadata to keep QVC running smoothly and allowing them to provide products people actually want to buy and use. I also learned some valuable information on respect. He stated, “People will only treat you the way you allow them to”. That really stuck with me, and is something I try to keep in mind when communicating or interacting with any person. It was a phenomenal presentation.

  • The most important that he discusssed was data is everywhere and how data affected virtually everything.
    Data was being used for business problems and usage inside a business. In addition he talked about data doesn’t have to be extremely difficult to make effective decisions.

  • The most important aspect I took away from his speech was the multitude of data in our world that needs to be managed and organized. He talked about data and metadata and I found his company to be very interesting. He was passionate about his career and gave some really good practical advice.

  • One of the most important takeaways for me was how he said we should like the culture of the company that we work for, because that’s one of the reasons that he really likes working at QVC. I will make sure to pay attention to the culture of businesses when i do internships and interviews. I learned that they used the data on what people were talking about on social media to know what the host should say about the products and I found that to be really cool. I also learned that even the smallest piece of data can sometimes be a big help to the company when it is found.

  • I think the biggest takeaway for me was that data is very crucial in life and that it is in pretty much everything we do. Its really pretty awesome what the company QVC does as well. Looking into the television networks and doing what they do is something I would’ve never thought. This talk also made me realize that data could be as small as positive and negative feelings.

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Office Hours
Laurel Miller (instructor) 11:00am-12:00pm, Tuesdays and Thursdays, Speakman Hall 210 or by appointment.
ITA information
Rebecca Jackson (ITA) By appointment only. Email: rebecca.jackson@temple.edu
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