Domain or business context –agnostic – Don’t tell your data scientist what your business is!!
After reading many books, researching many articles, journals, and attending webinars of some renowned people in the analytics world, many of them say that a data scientist (especially the PhDs) should understand their companies or customers business to help drive discerning business decisions.
Most industry experts’ say that the data scientist needs to know and understand their business context otherwise they are highly ineffective just like software developers who write code without knowing where and who it is impacting.
Well, for data scientists, I have different case to make; with the sub-context that a data scientist should know something about the domain he/she is in otherwise the data would have absolutely no relevance to them.
Some of the most significant competitive advantages that companies have found are by allowing their data scientists to explore the unknown “unknown” and giving them the freedom to come up with insights that would not have been possible if they had been clouded or biased by the lingering business context in the sub-conscious at the back of their minds.
Therefore it is important, to always have your data scientists to work on data on enterprise data for which they have no business context attached to it. Data scientists are a breed that evolves into this role, not because they have a degree in mathematics or statistics, but those that have the capability to delve into data and fearlessness to dive deep into it and without bothering about what their resultant efforts would yield for their enterprise.
They become data scientists because they see the data in multi-dimensional perspectives, knowing that at some point, that one pattern or link in this quest could change the business game for their company.
Data scientists who have this quality are the ones who tell the business what the enterprise data is capable of doing and provide that much – needed alternative perspective.
In part conclusion, I believe that data scientists who don’t have the business/domain context often are the ones that enhance a company’s competitive advantage and keep them on a sustained evolutionary break through road map to become innovators and market leaders.