How To Tame Your Data and Overcome Analysis Paralysis

Posted by Lior Weinstein on Thursday, Mar 21st, 2013
Category : Microsoft Excel, Paperless Office, PDF to Excel Converter, Software

Running on a Hamster Wheel at Work

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Do you ever feel like you are running on a hamster wheel at work? We are becoming overwhelmed with data. Many people are finding that during the course of business, the influx of information has them running in endless circles.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sometimes you just need to learn how to manage all that information that is constantly coming in and going out.

The amount of data business owners, managers and entrepreneurs have to deal with on a daily basis has lead to something called “analysis paralysis”.  Even the most organized person will have crunch times when the amount of information that needs to be sorted, analyzed and formed into a cohesive report will be too much. You have to be able to make quick and informed business decisions, or provide reports or proposals so that others can make those decisions. How do you tame that data and organize your thoughts and your information?

Don’t Procrastinate

Putting it off will just make it worse. Leaving an important project to the last minute leads to mistakes. Make yourself and everyone else involved in the project a schedule in Excel and stick to it. Set aside a certain time of day to work on the difficult projects. Many people find that first thing in the morning is the best time to tackle a challenging project, when their mind is fresh.

Most Productive Time

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Catalog the Data that You Need

Keep track of all your research in a spreadsheet so it is easy to go back and look up that website or other information when you need it. Manage the entire project this way and you’ll be ahead of the game. Sticky notes don’t cut it when you have to prepare a large report.

Make Sure Everyone is on the Same Page

If you are working on a project where you are depending on others to send you data, it is easier if everyone is using the same format. Some of your colleagues may be handing over printouts, others may be sending Word or PDF documents, or you may be downloading information from the Internet. Whether it is statistics, graphs, charts, tables, or the written word, one of the most time consuming jobs is moving all that information into one form. By using a PDF to Excel converter, you can move all that data into Excel. It is also easier to cull redundant data. When you are ready to print your final report and send it off, you can convert that document to a PDF file.


Make Sure the Page Everyone is On is Digital

When you are deluged with data, nothing causes more grief  than piles of paper that need to be sorted. Someone hands you a 50 page printed report, and you cringe.  You will have to go through the entire document, mark pages with sticky tabs and then go back and figure out how to get that data into your project. You could manually copy the data. Not easy to do if it is a chart or a graph. You can scan the page and convert it using a PDF to Excel converter. It’s better not to have to go through paper reports at all if you can help it, but sometimes that is impossible.

If you have the option of accessing the document online, you can search through 50 or 100 pages and find the part you want in no time.

Analysis Paralysis

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Don’t be Afraid to Ask for Help

If you are working for a company that doesn’t have the resources you need, ask for them. Maybe your superior isn’t aware that software can push the project forward faster by allowing you to collaborate on a more effecient level with your colleagues.

Before your next project lands in your lap, make sure you have all the processes in place, so that you can hand over that bound report to your boss ahead of schedule.

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