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The Connection Challenge

The challenge of connecting with our internal stakeholders was the overarching message from the three speakers at our inaugural INsightsOUT event.

On the one hand this challenge steps beyond the mechanics and art of communication to tackle the issues of preconceived views of the truth, internal politics, and as Mercedes Clark-Smith from Sky Insights pointed out, the risks inherent with creating citizen analysts. Indeed, as Mike O’Donohue from Camelot stated so emphatically, it raises the question as to why people ‘leave their humanity at the door’ when they come to work.

However, why the psychology of engaging and communicating with people may be the primary challenge we all face, ultimately it is the approaches we take that have to provide the solution.

For that reason, the event proved a great platform for knowledge sharing. Alex Maude, the event’s host from News UK, ran through that organisation’s engagement strategy that is designed to deal with the issues of cultural resistance, low levels of data literacy, staff turnover and the essential limitations of access to data. For News UK this involves a three-pronged outbound engagement strategy involving a revitalised Knowledge Hub, fortnightly Audience Voice newsletter and data insights reports.

The Sky Insights team – which, by the way, sits on so much data that it would fill 53 million four-drawer filing cabinets which, give or take a stadium or two, would in turn fill 134k football pitches – has introduced a raft of content outputs to disseminate this massive data volume and deal with issues the business faces of having a poor corporate memory. As well as a feature-rich portal and an iPad app for the Sky Execs, they have also introduced fun ways to market the content including advent calendars and other games.

We would like to thank our speakers for participating in the event: Mercedes Clark-Smith, Head of Data Products at Sky; Alex Maude, Knowledge Manager & Insight Editor at News UK; and Mike O’Donohue, Chief Data Officer at Camelot. We would also like to thank News UK for hosting the event.

INsightsOUT is a networking event for data and insights professionals looking to engage and communicate with internal stakeholders. Jointly organised by News UK and Seen&Read, we are on the lookout for anyone who like to join our small but perfectly formed steering group. Our aim is to hold the next event in February and if you are interested in speaking or hosting any of our events, please contact Scott McLean at

This article has been written by the Seen&Read team as a fair representation of the event. However, for full disclosure both News UK and Camelot are clients of Seen&Read.

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