How the performance score can simplify data

Michael Lieberman

The first point I make with my students in the initial lecture of a basic statistics course is that statistics is simply a numerical description of an event. The mud of correlations, regressions, ANOVAs, null hypotheses (the scary stuff) are no more than techniques to get an idea of what is happening.

Good research is the same. Good information, professionally gathered, well presented – a clear story with actionable, marketable results. Easily understood by the supplier the client, and their chiefs.

There are multitudes of ways to accomplish this. In this piece I explore one increasingly popular technique that can instantly be understood and used in executive decision-making. It boils down a sophisticated back-end to an index, a score, that measures performance. It has been applied to public relations, publishing, advertising, to retail outlet ranking, restaurant chains deciding the bonuses of brand and regional managers, even customer loyalty and professional sports.