Analytics on Fire podcast

Analytics on Fire

Mico Yuk | Interviews with leaders from enterprise companies about their ex

Analytics on Fire is your backstage pass inside the enterprise analytics and business intelligence world. Join your host BI author, speaker, and co-founder, Mico Yuk (BI Brainz) as she pulls back the curtain on what’s working right now in the enterprise analytics/business intelligence world and what is not. You’ll hear the inside scoop from experienced business leaders on how to plan, implement and gain true business value from your analytics dollars. Visit to subscribe and get weekly insights and freebies!

65 Episodes

  • Analytics on Fire podcast

    83: Data Lake or Data Fake? w/ David Dadoun


    This week we are joined by AoF alumni, David Dadoun to talk about data lakes, data oceans, data puddles, and data platforms, and why so many are confused about the topic. David is a leader, professor, global speaker, and recently transitioned to an exciting new role as Head of Enterprise Data and BI at BRP in Canada.  If you feel unsure about the definition of a data lake vs a data platform, you’re not alone. The concept continues to evolve, to where we are today which is a data platform. As the owner and creators of multiple data platforms, David shared breaks down the key steps to transform your data lake into a data platform. Whether you’re migrating to a more sophisticated data cloud or building a platform from scratch, the rapid pace of change means there’s always something new to be learned. Tune in today for this fascinating conversation on how to master your data platform!   In this episode, you'll learn: [0:07:35] What the ‘data lake’ was and how it has evolved over time. [0:08:35] What is a data fake and how data lakes have evolved into data platforms. [0:12:51] Who needs to own the data platforms and who it’s for. [0:14:41] How to run a data platform depending on the size and structure of your organization. [0:16:05] The different ways that companies can structure their data platform(s). [0:18:02] Why data literacy is crucial for any company with a data culture and how data lakes form part of the core strategy. [0:21:03] How to balance analytics and data goals within your company and teams. [0:24:20] The important steps a company can take towards creating a data lake. [0:28:13] Why it’s necessary to be mindful of the rapid rate of change within data and how it will affect your data platforms. For full show notes, and the links mentioned visit:   Enjoyed the Show?  Please leave us a review on iTunes.
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    82: How to Get Started with Advanced Analytics w/ Ryan Wade


    Ryan Wade joins us on AOF today to talk about how to use advanced analytics in your organization! Ryan has been in the analytics game for the last 20 years and is now a Senior Solution Consultant at Blue Granite, based in Indianapolis, Indiana. He recently authored the amazing must-read book, Advanced Analytics in Power BI with R and Python, and in today's chat, we get to hear all about why he wrote the book, who it is for and how you can use it to accelerate your data journey! I met Ryan while speaking at a few conferences and was always impressed with his knowledge and great sense of humor! A professional football player turned data scientist, Ryan has a passion for breaking down advanced analytics in a way anyone can understand. Whether you’re already using advanced analytics or researching how to get started Ryan’s knowledge on the topic will help you. Tune in with a pencil and paper in hand!   In this episode, you'll learn: [0:09:22] The rise of the R and Python programming languages in the data world. [0:16:44] The necessary, well-thought-out preparatory steps for a project utilizing advanced analytics. [0:19:39] Why attention-grabbing visuals are not the most important part of data storytelling! [0:23:13] Creating a sufficient team for data analytics and the vital roles of the database administrator, active directory administrator, and more! [0:39:07] Client conversations around shortcomings and hurdles in advanced analytics.  For full show notes, and the links mentioned visit:   Enjoyed the Show?  Please leave us a review on iTunes.
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    81: How to think like a CIO using ITIL w/ Mark Bradley


    Today's guest is another day one as he’s been in my community for over a decade and attended my very first Xcelsius training class! Mark Bradley has been in IT for around 30 years and has such a huge amount of knowledge and enthusiasm for the intersection of data, metrics, and leadership, I promise that you are not going to want to miss this amazing data masterclass! If you are thinking about becoming a CIO (Chief Information Officer) or your company is going through a digital transformation, this data masterclass is for you. Join us as discuss the ITIL framework, the topic of Mark’s recent book. We also look at how this relates to DITS or digital and IT strategy and the actionable steps you can take to accelerate your digital transformation! In this episode, you'll learn: [0:07:44] Mark describes the difference between building internally and outsourcing. [0:13:02] Mark teaches why you should focus on data quality vs quantity to build dashboards that serve specific needs of an organization. [0:20:32] The evolution of the ITIL methodology and getting to grips with DITS or digital and IT strategy.  [0:25:13] Specific roles that DITS is most appropriate for: CIOs, aspiring managers, directors, and CTOs.   [0:30:42] How relationships have changed with the subscription model for business. [0:31:37] Who the ITIL® 4 book is best suited to; size of businesses and types of transformations. [0:33:23] The obstacles to building a successful and functional digital strategy for a business. For full show notes, and the links mentioned visit:  Enjoyed the Show?  Please leave us a review on iTunes.
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    80: The Human Element of Digital Transformation w/ Rick Montgomery


    Hey AOF! Today I am joined by one of my first mentors in the BI industry, Rick Montgomery, to unpack why and how you can add the human element to digital transformation. Tune in as Rick shares how to identify, understand and map out the different personalities and parts of your digital transformation. In this episode, you'll learn: [0:09:12] What Rick learned from dropping out of MIT / Harvard. [0:19:39] How automation and analysis can lead to conversations with leadership. [0:21:38] Knowledge Bomb: How to get started with adding the human element and Rick's recommendations for useful books on consultative selling. [0:39:02] Knowledge Bomb: First sell your ignorance, then sell your expertise later! For full show notes, and the links mentioned visit:    Enjoyed the Show?  Please leave us a review on iTunes.
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    79: Behind the Scenes – Creating two Epic Dataviz Templates w/ Raquel Seville and Anna Ria


    Welcome to another exciting masterclass! Today I’m taking you behind the scenes of how two women leaders on our BI Brainz team, created not one, but two of our most downloaded dashboard templates ever! To share these juicy details, we are joined by Raquel Seville, CEO of BI Brainz Caribbean, and Anna Ria, our very own Head of Design and well-known BI Data Storytelling Accelerator trainer. In the first part, you’ll hear from Raquel, as she explains how she used our BI Data Storytelling Framework to transform a 271-page annual report into a simple, insightful Power BI Stock Dashboard template that got a thumbs-up from the company’s CEO on social media. Then, we jump into part two with Anna, as she shares the unique inspiration behind our now-famous Analytics Design Guide template and why she believes it became one of the most downloaded templates in BI Brainz history, with over 600 downloads in the first 48 hours! In this episode, you'll learn: [0:05:33] What Raquel has learned as a woman in a male-dominated industry. [0:06:10] How she built a single view dashboard from a 271-page annual report by focusing on a clear goal. [0:10:16] Raquel’s idea to create the Stock Data Viz Template, a free Power BI Dashboard. [0:28:27] What the Analytics Design Guide (or ADG) actually is: a set of guidelines that anybody can use. [0:30:46] Who will benefit from using the ADG, from novices to dashboard wizards! [0:34:08] How ADG can help users that are “over creative” by honing in on specific areas. [0:35:10] The story-driven analytics that drive the ADG and why Anna believes that storytelling is crucial for success. For full show notes, and the links mentioned visit:  Enjoyed the Show?  Please leave us a review on iTunes.
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    78: Mindset of a Rockstar Data Analyst w/ Trevor Tapscott


    Our focus for this inspiring episode of AOF is mindset, especially if you want to be a standout data analyst! I have brought one of my first ever followers and day ones! Trevor Tapscott is a VP and Analytics Consultant at Wells Fargo and has been in the game for 20 years and counting. We connected in 2008, when he was seeking help with a visualization tool called Xcelsius. In this knowledge bomb filled episode, Trevor shares his thoughts on what sets great data analysts apart, his framework ‘VTAC’ for impactful data analysis, and how to approach making an impression when applying for positions in data!   Trevor makes a number of really important points around understanding the business of data, what the role of an analyst truly is, and what goes into the mindset of a rock star in the space! We unpack indispensable parts of the relationships that make up the work of a data consultant, and our guest talks about getting to grips with a user's vision and their 'why'. Trevor also talks about the recent BIDS Accelerator class that he attended and the lessons he has already started implementing from that! Make sure to stay tuned to the end to hear about the amazing raffle that Trevor is hosting for listeners and how you can enter to win!    In this episode, you'll learn: [0:12:00] Trevor's basic definition of the role of a data analyst and what it means to be a rockstar! [0:15:02] The importance of understanding the business of data and the value of business insights.  [0:18:20] Unpacking Trevor's VTAC process: vision, translation, action, change and how to use it for delivery mode For full show notes, and the links mentioned visit:    Enjoyed the Show?  Please leave us a review on iTunes.
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    77: How to become a BI Data Journalist w/ Kimberly Herrington


    Finding your dream job in the world of data and analytics might not be as hard you think! Our guest today, Kimberly Herrington stands as a testament to this idea and she joins us on AOF to talk about how you can go about identifying and capturing your ideal position in this fascinating space. Kimberly is a data journalist at a large healthcare company in Buffalo, New York, and is also the founder of Buffalo Business Intelligence. She is also a graduate of our BI Data Storytelling Accelerator Workshop and in 2020, she was voted Data Literacy Advocate of the Year. Tune into this episode and you will see why! I am so excited to share this great chat with you, in which we hear about Kimberly's personal method for landing that dream job that you might have thought was only a wish. In our conversation, Kimberly does an amazing job of unpacking some parts of the work she does and the difference between some of the job titles in the space. We also talk about the great learnings she garnered from our workshop, and why you should sign up immediately! I learned so much from today's guest, and you will too, as we run through common mistakes that are made in the pursuit of a great job, how to leverage working at home to your advantage, and the vital importance of community! Kimberly is like a fairy of goodness, and believe me AOF, you will see exactly why I say this!   In this episode, you'll learn: [0:04:13] Kimberly's past work as a professional improv comedian! [0:09:12] Mapping the trajectory of an ideal career in data storytelling and how to start this journey.  [0:18:19] Differentiating between a data journalist, data storyteller, and analytics translator.  [0:24:43] Investing the time and money into valuable education and qualifications. For full show notes, and the links mentioned visit:    Enjoyed the Show?  Please leave us a review on iTunes.
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    76: Data Storytelling from a Data Scientist's POV w/ Kam Lee


    Stakeholders often miss key insights that can be provided by data to drive action forward, due to the way the data is presented and communicated to them. My guest today believes that data storytelling is key to resolving this common pain point. Kam Lee, a BI Data Storytelling Mastery alumn and graduate who has used our framework to surface over $100M for the fintech company he works with! Kam is the Chief Data Scientist at his company Finetooth Analytics (specializing in marketing analytics), working with top marketers like Russell Brunson from Clickfunnels! Our data masterclass with Kam today delves deep into how he used our BI Data Storytelling Methodology and framework to straddle data engineering, data science, and storytelling. Kam shares game-changing concepts from the course and how he has used them to connect to stakeholders, influence their actions, and overcoming what he calls ‘emotional responses’ to data. Tune in to this knowledge bomb-filled episode! In this episode, you'll learn: [0:12:20] Three buckets Kam uses to organize the data storytelling process. [0:14:56] The challenge of dealing with stakeholders who respond emotionally to data. [0:26:48] Whether to start with the storyboarding or the analytics data dictionary first. [0:28:19] The difference between KPIs, trends, and actions. For full show notes, and the links mentioned visit:    Enjoyed the Show?  Please leave us a review on iTunes.
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    75: How to Think like a Product Leader w/ Kevin Greene


    Here on the AOF podcast, I have often spoken about the issue of user adoption and the slow progress we have all been experiencing for a long time. Our guest today has so much to offer in relation to our approach to this challenge! I speak to Kevin Greene, the CEO of Logi Analytics, and we delve deep into why the mentality of product leaders is so valuable right now!  Kevin has a brilliant mind for the field of analytics, sharing how and where to get started with these parts of your leadership and partnerships. Kevin has been in the analytics game for over 20 years and was actually an investor at Logi before he took the reins! This episode is jam-packed with actionable knowledge bombs that you are definitely not going to want to miss, so let's get to it AOF!   In this episode, you'll learn: [15:41] Why Kevin believes enterprises have to start thinking like product leaders.  [22:47] Approaches to building strategic applications with a smaller team. [25:11] Finding the right service partners and the critical nature of owning the application. [28:59] Ensuring success by scheduling time with business leaders, prioritizing, and using collected data. [44:04] Operationalizing your application and bringing it to your end-users. For full show notes, and the links mentioned visit:    Enjoyed the Show?  Please leave us a review on iTunes.
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    74: Creating a Data Literacy Program Using ISL (Information as a Language) w/ Valerie Logan


    Today we have a real data masterclass in store for you! I am joined by the wonderful and inspiring Valerie Logan from The Data Lodge, and we talk about the unique way she approaches data literacy through what she calls ISL or Information as a Second Language®. Valerie does an amazing job of unpacking exactly how this works and adds in loads of useful wisdom and examples that you can add to your existing data literacy program. I would call Valerie a data whisperer, and by the end of this exciting episode, you will see why. Make sure to stay tuned until the end to hear about an extra special offer, that Valerie has for AOF listeners. Trust me you will not want to miss it. So if you want to learn how to create an effective data literacy program from an award-winning expert, join us today!   In this episode, you'll learn: [0:12:20] What is data literacy? What is ISL? Who do they serve? [0:19:46] How Valerie approaches speaking to "non-data people". [0:23:32] The three elements of data literacy programs; engagement, development, enablement. [0:37:06] Valerie's advice for improving the standard of a data program. For full show notes, and the links mentioned visit:   Enjoyed the Show?  Please leave us a review on iTunes.

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