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What Does It Mean to Be an Entrepreneur? | @BigDataExpo #BigData #BusinessIntelligence
My daughter is taking a class on entrepreneurship in her senior year of high school

My daughter is taking a class on entrepreneurship in her senior year of high school (yep, that’s the Silicon Valley for you). She loves the class, the energy of the teacher, and the creativity associated with the subject. As a result, we have had several conversations about what does it mean to be an entrepreneur.

While I am sure there are folks more qualified than me to define what it means to be an entrepreneur, I’ve run into enough of those folks over the years to believe that I have a pretty decent perspective.

So honey, this blog is for you!

Entrepreneur Characteristics
I run into all types of people in my job – people starting up new companies as well as people inside of larger organizations who are trying to embrace a “think differently” approach to their jobs and their business challenges. Each of these folks share a core set of characteristics that differentiate them from others who are equally smart, but lack that impassioned entrepreneurial thinking.

  1. On a mission. These folks have found their passion and are on a mission to change the world. No small thinking for these folks, and while they are looking to solve cancer or cure world hunger, they also have another important, very practical skill…
  2. Know how to decompose a problem. Entrepreneurs are very good at decomposing or breaking down a problem into its core components. In this way, they don’t let a complex and challenging problem overwhelm them. By breaking the problem done into its core components and then taking the time to understand the relationships between those components, it gives them a leg up on solving that problem. The folks creating the autonomous driving car have taken this approach, and consequently, something that I truly believed was a decade away is now just around the corner.
  3. Keep moving forward. They never stop moving, but progress isn’t measured with a straight line. Sometimes progress comes in fits and spurts.  In fact, there may be times when the entrepreneur feels like no progress is being made, but this is when the next characteristic kicks in…
  4. Failure is learning = Failure is progress. Entrepreneurs understand that failure is part of the learning and development process. That’s probably why the Venture Capitalists on Sand Hill Road as so eager to invest in entrepreneurs with experience, whether that experience was successful or not. Heck, learning from failure may be an entrepreneur’s most important characteristic.
  5. Like a damn bulldog! Once they get their teeth onto an idea, they just won’t let go. They’ll hang onto that idea as if their lives depended upon it, even has others are trying to pull it away from them.
  6. Refuse to be knocked down. Some folks would say that this arrogance, but I’d say that it’s an unwillingness to be knocked off the hill; that they are going to stay on top of that hill until they finally achieve success. By the way, this characteristic is also why some entrepreneurs struggle to run their organizations once that organization starts to mature. Yea, those skills and characteristics that make one a good entrepreneur may not make one a good manager.
  7. Open to others’ perspectives and thoughts. But while they are open to others’ perspectives and thoughts, they never let those perspectives and thoughts get in the way of their mission. They are constantly looking to learn, but they are quick to internalize what they learn. The entrepreneur reframes the new learnings in light of their mission.
  8. Collaborative but ultimately hold themselves accountable for the end results. They never abdicate responsibility to others. And consequently, they never blame others for their failures. If they are blaming others for their failures, then they’ll never learn from those failures.
  9. Well read, but don’t just focus on only their area of expertise. They are looking for outside stimuli and different perspectives to expand their own perspectives. They understand that they don’t have all the answers (heck, they may not even know all the questions yet), but they are eager to look in other places for clues and new perspectives.
  10. Strong focus on superior outcomes. They understand that whatever their mission, they ultimately need to deliver compelling and differentiated outcomes in order to be successful. Looking for 10% improvements is not enough. Entrepreneurs look for 10x improvements!
  11. Resilient; willing to be fired for what they believe. They don’t work at jobs; entrepreneurs work on a mission, and as long as their job and their mission are in sync, great. But the minute those two diverge, then the entrepreneur is onto something that moves them closer to their mission.

I really appreciate Woody Allen movies, especially his earlier ones.  He always seemed to have a different perspective on the topic under discussion. It wasn’t that he looked at the glass as either half-full or half-empty, instead he looked at the glass from an entirely new angle and he always seemed to see something entirely different.

I admire that in a person; someone who refuses to accept that which is right in front of them as the “truth.” Entrepreneurs challenge commonly held truths; they put a question mark at the end of the “statement of truth” in order to see what different angles they might uncover.  When you can do that, life becomes very exciting…and fun.

Best of luck Amelia! I am jealous of what is in front of you!

The post What Does It Mean To Be An Entrepreneur? appeared first on InFocus Blog | Dell EMC Services.

Read the original blog entry...

About William Schmarzo
Bill Schmarzo, author of “Big Data: Understanding How Data Powers Big Business” and “Big Data MBA: Driving Business Strategies with Data Science”, is responsible for setting strategy and defining the Big Data service offerings for Hitachi Vantara as CTO, IoT and Analytics.

Previously, as a CTO within Dell EMC’s 2,000+ person consulting organization, he works with organizations to identify where and how to start their big data journeys. He’s written white papers, is an avid blogger and is a frequent speaker on the use of Big Data and data science to power an organization’s key business initiatives. He is a University of San Francisco School of Management (SOM) Executive Fellow where he teaches the “Big Data MBA” course. Bill also just completed a research paper on “Determining The Economic Value of Data”. Onalytica recently ranked Bill as #4 Big Data Influencer worldwide.

Bill has over three decades of experience in data warehousing, BI and analytics. Bill authored the Vision Workshop methodology that links an organization’s strategic business initiatives with their supporting data and analytic requirements. Bill serves on the City of San Jose’s Technology Innovation Board, and on the faculties of The Data Warehouse Institute and Strata.

Previously, Bill was vice president of Analytics at Yahoo where he was responsible for the development of Yahoo’s Advertiser and Website analytics products, including the delivery of “actionable insights” through a holistic user experience. Before that, Bill oversaw the Analytic Applications business unit at Business Objects, including the development, marketing and sales of their industry-defining analytic applications.

Bill holds a Masters Business Administration from University of Iowa and a Bachelor of Science degree in Mathematics, Computer Science and Business Administration from Coe College.

Presentation Slides
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CloudEXPO Stories
Extreme Computing is the ability to leverage highly performant infrastructure and software to accelerate Big Data, machine learning, HPC, and Enterprise applications. High IOPS Storage, low-latency networks, in-memory databases, GPUs and other parallel accelerators are being used to achieve faster results and help businesses make better decisions. In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Michael O'Neill, Strategic Business Development at NVIDIA, focused on some of the unique ways extreme computing is being used on IBM Cloud, Amazon, and Microsoft Azure and how to gain access to these resources in the cloud... for FREE!
Fact: storage performance problems have only gotten more complicated, as applications not only have become largely virtualized, but also have moved to cloud-based infrastructures. Storage performance in virtualized environments isn’t just about IOPS anymore. Instead, you need to guarantee performance for individual VMs, helping applications maintain performance as the number of VMs continues to go up in real time. In his session at Cloud Expo, Dhiraj Sehgal, Product and Marketing at Tintri, shared success stories from a few folks who have already started using VM-aware storage. By managing storage operations at the VM-level, they’ve been able to solve their most vexing storage problems, and create infrastructures that scale to meet the needs of their applications. Best of all, they’ve got predictable, manageable storage performance – at a level conventional storage can’t match. ...
"We do one of the best file systems in the world. We learned how to deal with Big Data many years ago and we implemented this knowledge into our software," explained Jakub Ratajczak, Business Development Manager at MooseFS, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
Traditional IT, great for stable systems of record, is struggling to cope with newer, agile systems of engagement requirements coming straight from the business. In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, William Morrish, General Manager of Product Sales at Interoute, will outline ways of exploiting new architectures to enable both systems and building them to support your existing platforms, with an eye for the future. Technologies such as Docker and the hyper-convergence of computing, networking and storage creates a platform for consolidation, migration and enabling digital transformation.
Using new techniques of information modeling, indexing, and processing, new cloud-based systems can support cloud-based workloads previously not possible for high-throughput insurance, banking, and case-based applications. In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, John Newton, CTO, Founder and Chairman of Alfresco, described how to scale cloud-based content management repositories to store, manage, and retrieve billions of documents and related information with fast and linear scalability. He addressed the challenges of scaling document repositories to this level; architectural approaches for coordinating data; search and storage technologies, Solr, and Amazon storage and database technologies; the breadth of use cases that modern content systems need to support; how to support user applications that require subsecond response times.

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My discussions with organizations looking to “digitally transform” themselves is yielding some interesting observations. I expect that when these discussions move into the execution phase, we will start to create some “Laws of Digital Transformation” that will guide organizations digital transformation journey. So with that in mind, let me start by proposing these “4 Laws of Digital Transformation.”
Containers, microservices and DevOps are all the rage lately. You can read about how great they are and how they’ll change your life and the industry everywhere. So naturally when we started a new company and were deciding how to architect our app, we went with microservices, containers and DevOps. About now you’re expecting a story of how everything went so smoothly, we’re now pushing out code ten times a day, but the reality is quite different.
Gone are the days when application development was the daunting task of the highly skilled developers backed with strong IT skills, low code application development has democratized app development and empowered a new generation of citizen developers. There was a time when app development was in the domain of people with complex coding and technical skills. We called these people by various names like programmers, coders, techies, and they usually worked in a world oblivious of the everyday priorities of the business world. However, with the passage of time, this scenario is much more democr...