Unlocking the Potential of Data for your Business: A Quick Guide to Ideation Sessions for Data Science

25 Aug, 2023
Xebia Background Header Wave

Are you struggling to identify the best data science opportunities for your organization? Ideation sessions are here to help you! In this quick guide, we’ll show you how to set up your own ideation sessions in six (plus one) easy steps.

Step 0: Choose your audience wisely

Think about your audience. Combine business, data and IT experts, and balance seniority to assure you focus on a valuable and feasible business problem. Only invite participants for whom the (potential output of the) session is useful – nothing drains energy more than participants who can’t articulate "what is in it for me".

Step 1: Set your definition of success

Agree on the goal of the session and make sure it is valuable to everyone involved. Write down the definitions of success and reflect on them throughout the session.

Step 2: Provide inspiring examples and theoretical frameworks

Present inspiring examples of data science products to encourage participants to think outside their box. Make sure to explain the solutions without too many technical details, link them to the overall session goal, and link them to theoretical frameworks that your participants ought to know.

Step 3: Break down the business problem

Start by breaking down the business problem to ensure that the analytics opportunities identified solve a business need. Create a driver tree or sketch the impacted business process to identify where data science can potentially help.

Step 4: Identify data opportunities

Identify where data solutions can potentially help address one or several components from your driver tree or business process. Trace back the data idea to business impact using the framework from step 3. Data opportunities can span all types of analytics (descriptives to prescriptive and generative AI).

Step 5: Prioritize your opportunities balancing impact and feasibility

With your diverse group of participants, add detail to opportunities to assess feasibility with respect to required data, technical (and model) complexity, implementation efforts, and organizational involvement. For impact scoring, you could consider strategic fit, scalability, monetary & non-monetary value. Prioritize based on impact and feasibility.

Step 6: Agree on next steps and timelines

Process all the input received in the session and refine the top opportunity(s) into a use case. Come up with a clear list of activities and timelines. Discuss what support is needed from participants, get their commitment and sign-off to help. Involve a wider group of stakeholders in the follow-up to plant the seed of business ownership and co-creation.


By following these six (plus one) steps, you’ll be able to identify the best data science opportunities for your organization and unlock its full potential through data science and AI. So why wait? Prepare your ideation journey today and take your business to the next level!


Image by Mohamed_hassan on Pixabay


Get in touch with us to learn more about the subject and related solutions

Explore related posts