BI: Errors Wanted


If you’re not embarrassed by the first version of your product, you’ve launched too late.  — Reid Hoffman

I recently finished Bold by Peter Diamandis and Steven Kotler. The book is part economic treatise and part playbook for entrepreneurs.

 Diamandis and Kotler argue that we entering an “exponential economy,” where business becomes demonetized, democratized, and rapidly improving.

Want to get rich from this? The authors cover your options, from crowdsourcing to building online communities.

I like being an analyst. The book got me wondering how business analysis and intelligence will change in the world of Bold. Here are the takeaways for my career.

Don’t Leave Your Work at the Office…

The democratization of business means that ideas are shared more freely than ever. More software gets released open-source. People give out their best ideas for free without concern for monetary gain. 

Too many people are content to leave their thoughts on the computer at work. Doing this misses the opportunities of “data democratization.”

Of course I am not suggesting you release proprietary data. But if you learn a new Excel trick, tweet it. If you read an article that changes your thinking, write a post. Interview people you find fascinating.

In an information economy, ideas are the new currency. Sharing your thoughts online is like minting your own money. 

Give Us Your Thoughts — You Never Know What You’ll Receive

A theme of this book is the exponential power of the Internet. Information can travel more rapidly than ever before.

It really helps your ideas become exponential. 

The authors say that “A series of powerful blog posts can get you everything from a date for Friday night to an invitation to speak at a conference.” When I write a blog post, I imagine me bottling up a note and placing it in the vast ocean of the World Wide Web. You never know the result!

 Making Mistakes is Necessary

A common objection to sharing thoughts in BI is “But I don’t really know what I am doing. How can I be a thought leader?”

A great guiding resource to this doubt has been this video on starting an Excel blog (which is the foundation of my own blog). 

My favorite line: “You’re doing it wrong — but so is everyone else.”

Don’t look at these new platforms as ways to demonstrate your expertise. Look at them of ways to pursue your interests and try out new methods.

The Bold economy is built on rapid, low-risk mistake-making. “Infinite computing democratizes error-making, this democratizing experimentation,” the authors state.

It’s a platitude now, but “Fail Early, Fail Often,” captures this ethic.

Not sure if your program will work or you’ve really got a grip on a new model? Share it anyway — provided it’s the best you’ve got. Bandwidth and memory are no longer precious resources.

I recommend Bold not just to entrepreneurs but to anyone excited for tomorrow. For analysts like me, the “exponential economy” means thinking of the world as your workspace and maximizing on the cheap resource of error-making.

BI: Errors Wanted. And make sure you tell us about your first fender-bender! 

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