August 8, 2020

Coping with COVID–19: Econometrician Jerrod Begora Channels the Timely Forces of Communication and Creativity

Jerrod Begora, Director of Analytics at marketing solutions provider Quad, recently spoke about the impact of COVID–19 on economic activities at a virtual talk hosted by workforce accelerator Promotable. He gave a lean tour of sheer disturbance (and disruption) across varied industries, from food processing to retail to hospitality, affected bottom-up, top-down by the pandemic. From his narration of consumer behavior and its potential staging of opportunities for data analytics/science in these unsettling times, I kept channeling (gerund surely intended) a major source of ingenuity. Rather than referring to the world of econometrics which Jerrod geeks on, I contemplated on the world of dance—specifically the pioneering artist Martha Graham (1894–1991), whose prime directive was:

“Keep the channel open.”

Underscore “channel.” In relation to Jerrod’s presentation, the meaning of this word and concept is twofold:

Channel—as in communication channel. Jerrod framed communication within marketing. Content strategy is also a part of this in addition to user experience (UX). To marketers, Jerrod strongly encouraged an omnichannel-data outlook regarding which communication channels are capitalized on by people sheltering in place, along with learning and working remotely. Beyond marketing, communication is a staple of business infrastructure. Pre-pandemic, it may have been regarded as a no-brainer. Post-pandemic, communication is an indispensable capability. To communicate via a variety of methods (omnichannel) will never be observed as a passive priority. One example: communication is at the core of Microsoft’s Workplace Analytics experiment of studying their teams’ adaptation to producing and collaborating from a distance. From its summary: “Human connection matters a lot, and people find a way to get it.” Communication can obviously be channeled in a variety of technological ways—to not be taken for granted.

Channel—as in creative channel. When asked what he would revisit and adjust early on in his career as a Data Analytics Analyst, Jerrod revealed that he “pulled back too much” in sharing ideas. In the search for ideas, Jerrod essentially nudged people to express, not repress. Ideation is a continuum energized by creativity—to be kept channeled.

Thanks again to Promotable who further nurture their virtual courses with expert perspectives through their coordination of regular events online! Explore their YouTube channel and Events at LinkedIn.

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