What Today’s Enterprises Can Learn from Aquaman When it Comes to Data Management

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I’ve always been a fan of the comic book universe and the super hero blockbusters that have defined generations – from Spiderman and Batman to the Avengers and the Justice League – these superhero movies offer an escape from reality, and a world of entertainment for viewing audiences. As a true technology enthusiast, the upcoming release of the Aquaman movie release inspired me, and I couldn’t help but notice the similarities and themes woven throughout these superhero films that can find grounding in the challenges and opportunities I see in the business world when it comes to wrangling data in the digital age.

So what lessons can today’s data teams learn from the superhero universe when it comes to data management?

Move quickly and have a back-up plan

When it comes to Aquaman – and the superhero universe more broadly – one common theme or “lesson” that always seems to play into the plot is that the superheroes first plan never works out – because of course if it did, the movie would be over in 20 minutes!

Even if, like Arthur Curry, you have been trained your whole career to approach data management in one way, you should always be open to learning from mistakes, growing and evolving your systems to meet new demands. A backup plan is critical in the digital age with the influx of data constantly expanding, bringing with it, a new set of challenges. Your data management platform must have this learning elasticity to enable your organization to be agile, adopting quickly to changing market trends, and staying a step ahead of the competition.

Having an arsenal of “super powers” is the only way to wrangle the universe of bad guys (and disparate, siloed data sets and unstructured, foreign data)

Aquaman does not simply rely on only one of his super powers to get the job done, but rather by combining his abilities such as breathing under water and controlling the minds of sea life he is able to diversify his plans of attack. Your data management system should mirror this strategy and feature a combination of solutions to organize, analyze and make data actionable, ultimately giving your system the upper hand. In the digital economy today, having a central hub or control center of solutions is your best line of attack against the force fields surrounding siloed data sets.

Having a central hub to pipeline, warehouse, mash-up and analyze the explosion of data sources and endpoints (e.g., enterprise apps, sensor data, social media, etc.) also makes it easier for enterprises to apply advanced technologies, such as machine learning and artificial intelligence, which can ultimately fuel the intelligent enterprise by automating time-consuming tasks for data insights and productivity.

Be careful in protecting the identity of your data

As the King of Atlantis, Aquaman has a huge responsibility when it comes to protecting his Atlanteans – similar to huge responsibility data management solutions have in protecting your enterprise information. As any great superhero knows, hiding your real identity to protect family and loved ones is a critical safeguard. In order to ensure data security, organizations today need a data anonymization solution to make sure the right people can glean valuable insight without compromising data privacy guidelines.  As Aquaman’s brother, and enemy, Orm states, “A war is coming to the surface whether you like it or not,” so be prepared with anonymization to ensure your data doesn’t get into enemy hands.

Don’t wade too deep without your team of sidekicks

While Aquaman is quite the powerful superhero in his own right, even he occasionally needs back-up from his comrades in the Justice League when it comes to taking down the bad guys – and this rings true when it comes to data management as well. Enterprises today need to seek out technology sidekicks to partner with them as they take on the unique challenges of today’s expansive digital business environments. Whether you are looking to develop and deploy new applications, securely extend your business processes and workflows, or harness your diverse business landscapes, having a data management provider that is in-tune to your unique business challenges and needs is critical to meeting the demands of customers, and fending off competitors and villains.

Similar to uniting the worlds of the surface and the sea, there is a lot today’s data management teams can learn from superheroes like Aquaman, when it comes to implementing digital platforms that support a winning strategy for enabling the intelligent enterprise.

About the Author

Philip On is technology expert in database and data management with over 20 years of experience working for market leaders like SAP, Oracle, Business Objects, salesforce.com and Intel. He is currently the Global Vice President of Product Marketing, Data Management for SAP.


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