A Halloween Tale That Turns Non-Invasive

Once upon a dark and eerie night, in the heart of the bustling city, there lived a data governance practitioner named Victor. Victor was known for his sharp mind and forward-thinking ideas, but he faced a daunting challenge: convincing his old and set-in-their-ways management that non-invasive data governance was the least scary of alternatives to implementing an effective data governance program.

Victor often spoke of a brighter future, while recalling the haunting tales of data chaos that lurked in the shadows of their current practices. He described the nightmares of duplicate records, where the same spectral data haunted multiple systems, causing confusion and misalignment among teams. Victor hoped that the board members could almost feel the chilling touch of inefficiency that had plagued their operations for far too long.

The company, nestled in a mammoth historic building that creaked with every gust of wind, was shrouded in mystery and tradition. Their board of directors, a group of stern-faced individuals, were known for their resistance to change. Victor’s success was seemingly doomed from the very beginning.

As the moon cast long shadows through the chilly fall office windows, Victor prepared his business case for implementing a non-invasive data governance program. Armed with charts, graphs, and a touch of Halloween flair, he entered the boardroom. The air seemed to chill as he spoke, “Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you a new approach to data governance — non-invasive and far less terrifying than the alternatives.”

The board members exchanged skeptical glances, their brows furrowing like dark storm clouds. Victor continued, his voice steady and persuasive, “Non-invasive data governance focuses on collaboration and transparency. It doesn’t disrupt existing processes, but enhances them, ensuring data quality and compliance seamlessly.”

Old Mr. Hargrove, the chairman, leaned forward, his eyes gleaming with suspicion. “But how can we trust this newfangled approach? We’ve relied on our traditional methods for years!”

Victor, undeterred, reached into his bag and pulled out a glowing orb. With a flourish, he projected a holographic visualization of their data ecosystem. “Gentlemen, consider this orb a representation of our data. Non-invasive governance is like a gentle hand guiding it, rather than a sledgehammer smashing through it.”

He went on, painting a vivid picture of a future where data flowed freely, where teams collaborated effortlessly, and where compliance was woven into the fabric of their operations. He went on further to describe metadata and the wealth and fortune that could be brought to the company through formal data documentation. The room, once shrouded in skepticism, began to brighten with possibility.

Victor spoke of the specters of non-compliance, the ghastly apparitions of regulatory fines and legal troubles that could materialize from the shadows at any moment. These were the ghosts that could drain the lifeblood from the company, leaving it weakened and vulnerable to the predatory forces of the market.

He painted a vivid picture of the poltergeists of inaccurate reporting, where phantom numbers danced across spreadsheets, misleading decision-makers and casting doubt on the very foundation of their business. The board members could almost hear the echoing cries of lost opportunities, like mournful wails in the night.

As he described the horrors of data breaches, where malevolent forces sought to steal and exploit sensitive information, the room seemed to grow colder, as if an evil presence had entered. The board members could feel the icy fingers of fear creeping up their spines, understanding the true cost of neglecting data governance.

By the time Victor concluded his presentation, the once stern faces of the board were now etched with a newfound understanding. They could see the ghosts of their past mistakes, lurking in the shadows, waiting to strike. The promise of non-invasive data governance was like a protective ward, guarding against the malicious forces that threatened to unravel their company.

As Victor spoke, he could sense the tide turning. He recounted stories of other successful companies that had embraced non-invasive governance, and how they had thrived in a rapidly changing world. The once set-in-their-ways board members started to nod, their expressions softening.

Finally, Mr. Hargrove spoke, his voice less gruff and more contemplative. “Perhaps, Victor, there is merit in this non-invasive approach. It seems less like a haunted house and more like a well-lit path forward.”

As Hargrove continued, his voice carried a weighty gravitas, as if he was invoking incantations from the beyond. “You have uncovered a portal to a new realm of possibilities. It is time we cast aside our old, haunted methods and embrace this new path.”

With those words, the room seemed to exhale a collective breath, as if a long-held enchantment had been broken. The once stern faces of the board members now held a glimmer of anticipation, like souls seeing a glimpse of light in the darkest of nights.

The room erupted into a chorus of agreement. Victor’s heart swelled with triumph. He had managed to dispel the ghosts of fear and resistance that haunted the board, replacing them with the promise of progress and efficiency.

As the meeting concluded, Victor left the boardroom, his steps light and confident. The moon outside had emerged from behind the clouds, casting a gentle glow over the city. He knew that the journey ahead would not be without its challenges, but he also knew that he had turned a corner, leading his company towards a future where non-invasive data governance would be the norm.

Victor couldn’t shake the feeling that he had navigated through a realm of the supernatural. The radiant glow left long spectral shadows on the cobblestone streets. He knew that he had stepped into a new chapter, one where the ghosts of resistance had been laid to rest, and the promise of progress shone like a beacon through the fog of uncertainty.

Victor had proven that even in the most haunted of environments, innovation could prevail. And so, on that Halloween night, he walked the spectral path toward a future where non-invasive data governance would reign, leaving behind the echoes of the past in favor of an optimistic dawn.

Victor validated that sometimes, the least scary path is also the most transformative. The spirits of innovation and collaboration walked hand in hand with him, lighting the way towards a brighter, data-driven future.

Copyright © 2023 – Robert S. Seiner and KIK Consulting & Educational Services

Image used under license from Shutterstock.com

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Robert S. Seiner

Robert S. Seiner

Robert (Bob) S. Seiner is the President and Principal of KIK Consulting & Educational Services and the Publisher Emeritus of The Data Administration Newsletter. Seiner is a thought-leader in the fields of data governance and metadata management. KIK (which stands for “knowledge is king”) offers consulting, mentoring and educational services focused on Non-Invasive Data Governance, data stewardship, data management and metadata management solutions. Seiner is the author of the industry’s top selling book on data governance – Non-Invasive Data Governance: The Path of Least Resistance and Greatest Success (Technics Publications 2014) and the followup book - Non-Invasive Data Governance Strikes Again: Gaining Experience and Perspective (Technics 2023), and has hosted the popular monthly webinar series on data governance called Real-World Data Governance (w Dataversity) since 2012. Seiner holds the position of Adjunct Faculty and Instructor for the Carnegie Mellon University Heinz College Chief Data Officer Executive Education program.

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