Founders, teach your employees statistics

Everyone is learning statistics because making sense of data is the difference between success and failure. R, the open source statistics language, is about a third as popular as Ruby and growing fast.

Statistics are essential because data is ubiquitous and volumes are growing exponentially, even in startups. CEOs measure key company metrics. Engineers measure application performance and build machine learning models. Marketers measure campaign performance and reach. PMs measure engagement. And so on.

A basic knowledge of statistics has become essential for most roles in business and for most companies, I think it’s worth sending most employees to a statistics course, because understanding the relationships across data is the determinant of success. More information implies better analysis means better decisions.

Venture capital is no different. I spend quite a lot of time with R these days. I’ve written about how I use these for business development. Also, I manage portfolio company performance data, publicly available data like trending applications on the app store. And so on.

If a relationship business like venture capital can benefit from statistics, imagine the impact to a performance oriented startup. So pick up that stats 101 book, fire up R and leverage your data for your success.

Oct 10, 2012

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