Decision making in traditional hierachical organisations all too often defaults to a HiPPO.

A HiPPO is a Highest Paid Person’s Opinion.

Typically, they over rule the data, which comes in endless streams of so-called reports (numbers in various, mostly Excel and dashboard, forms, without analysis and insight), and personalise decision making with their opinions.

Post-industrial enterprizes or, if you prefer, enterprize 2.0 entities will make decisions in new ways.

The hierachical-based, HiPPO decision process was the best available option when people assumed that experience equated with competence.

Often these guys, and they were mostly guys, got to the top of the decision-making tree, in part, as a result of their experience, often gained within the one company or several companies in the one industry vertical.

However, today that conventional approach is less and less effective as the speed of digitally-driven change means experience no longer correlates with competence.

Social decision making by inherently collaborative, socially-integrated organisations will challenge and surpass those legacy companies where HiPPO dictates remain the norm.

Marketing in these customer-driven entities will focus on harvesting the right data points, extracting insignts, committing to data-driven actions and making increasingly accurate forecasts.

Entire organisations will obsess about how customers experience their brand.

New sources of competitive advantage will be created and there won’t be a HiPPO in sight.

For more, check out Wired magazine’s great article on the merits of A/B Testing, and the Decision Hacker blog, and Avinash Kaushik’s Seven Steps to Creating a Data-Driven Culture.

And this book will be worth considering when it is published in February 2013: Decision Sourcing by Dale Roberts and Rooven Pakkiri.

A strategic marketing executive with extensive experience delivering business results for Ansell Healthcare, Mercedes-Benz, consultancies and organisations in Australia, Asia and Europe. Leading-edge skills built around the fundamental principle that, in an era of rapid product and service commoditization, the customer experience matters and is a key driver of competitive advantage. Fully cognizant of the need to synchronize processes, business technology and people to ensure that brand promises are mirrored by reinforcing brand actions. Thrives in “can do”, values-driven organisations which are committed to consumer-focused innovation and making a difference by thinking strategically but acting pragmatically. An accomplished, collaborative business leader and communicator with excellent interpersonal and public speaking capabilities. Key strengths: • Building influence across the business • Harnessing emerging customer trends • Thriving on market and technology change • Differentiating the brand experience • Optimizing the marketing and media mix • Creating and nurturing high-performance teams and relationships Specialties Assets and transferable skills include leadership, strategy development, project management, technology utilization, business process improvement, performance metrics and public speaking. Email: