Data vs Intuition

In 2001-02, Amazon watched its stock price tumble from $113 to just six dollars per share in the Dotcom Crash.

Steve Anderson, the author of The Bezos Letters, wrote that the person who seemed the least alarmed at the time was Jeff Bezos.

Amazon is famous for its obsession with customer data, analytics, measuring and numbers.

The company has entire departments dedicated to making sense of its enormous collection of data.

It may surprise you to discover that to Bezos, data is extremely important - but not paramount.

"I've noticed when anecdotes and data disagree, anecdotes are usually right," he said.

It turned out, the Dotcom Crash was more of a problem for companies who needed to borrow money.

Amazon wasn't one of them.

They were just six years or so into existence, and growing consistently.

If you're data-smart like Amazon, you might need refreshers on trusting your instincts.

But if you're instinct-driven like me, you might "suck" at capturing and interpreting data.

The simple solution to this is to start measuring, but there's a catch:

What do you measure, and what's the right way to measure it?

I don't have answers to that just yet, but I can certainly measure what I don't know how to measure.

Rather like AA programs train recovering addicts to do a "ruthless inventory" of their flaws.

You can start by making a list of what you do not know.

And then you can begin paying attention as best you as you know how to do.


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