Focus on the impact of the output
We were joined by Lindsey Dietz, Stress Testing Production Function Lead at the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. Lindsey leads a team of quants & data scientists implementing and analyzing stress testing models in the Federal Reserve System. She loves diving into the nitty gritty of data and using R code to better understand the statistical dynamics we observe in the banking sector.
Loved kicking off the session with tips for communicating technical results to the business.
It’s key to think of pretty much every audience as a non-technical audience, even when you have people you know are technical. It’s best not to assume that your audience ever knows the things you know because it’s unlikely that anyone will be as deeply immersed in a problem as you are.
Focus on the impact of the output first. I like to tell my team that what you might think is the smallest piece of work, someone else is going to think that is magic. I was actually just telling someone this earlier today. They were talking about the coding they had done and I said, “you know, the thing that is going to really impress people is that you generated this automated piece of documentation from your code basically for free.”
I remember someone at the RStudio Conference talking about “minimizing time to magic” and that is really the impact driver for most people. Focus on the impact in your regular words and remove the jargon.
Trust yourself that you’ve done all the checking, the assumptions, and the technical details. Write that down for yourself and have a good appendix or technical paper to go with your work.
Non-technical audiences may ask you questions that you didn’t even think about that are really helpful in being proactive for future analysis.
Practice your translation skills, even if you know they’re not going to understand your world and you’re not necessarily going to understand theirs. For decision makers – bottom lines are important, right? How does this save us time, how does it save us money? These are key concepts that you should keep in mind for non-technical spaces.
Resources shared: Stress Testing Publications: https://lnkd.in/egXfajBF
📚 Info on Stress Testing data submitted by banks: https://lnkd.in/eqh5AckU
📚Where to download some useful public bank data: https://lnkd.in/eRiceXaU
📚 Upcoming R Ladies meetups around the world! https://lnkd.in/dzcpRT-D
📚 Upcoming R user groups around the world as well! https://lnkd.in/esNku4Ei
Featured in this episode
Lindsey leads a team of data scientists working on stress testing in the Federal Reserve System. Her experience ranges across several financial risks and the full statistical modeling lifecycle including development, implementation, and validation. She is a passionate supporter of women in Science, Tech, Engineering, and Math (STEM).