on analysis one analyst-year in
It's been a little over a year since I joined Gartner.
Some things about analysis stick out one anlayst-year in.
1. Numbers don't lie, but beware averages, timescales, local min/max-es and the like.
You have to dig deep for the real story. Everyone knows this and nearly no one does it. I interact with too many people who say "the forecast says x" or "market share globally is y" without having looked at the breakdown of numbers below the abstract data point. The surprising-est thing about this is how often that person is an investor.
2. Being an analyst is strange.
The weight carried by "Gartner" next to my name is more than I expected by an order of magnitude.
A bit of the job is just playing tech/vendor/market therapist.
It's hard work to not get sucked into one kind of a bubble or another that causes you to lose touch with what's going on in the real world. You have to constantly remind yourself of your biases, background, context, the biases and backgrounds and contexts of the people you're interacting with, and seek out things that check and balance you out.
3. Some significant portion of those engaging with analyst firms have no idea of how to do it or even what it is that they're getting.
They don't know what the range of services is that they have available to them. They have no strategy for engagement. Etc. And they don't ask. They don't seek to find out. I have to figure out that they don't know and then lay out the list of things that could be done differently. This may be as much a problem of customer management as anything, so I don't lay the blame all in one place.