This Blog is About Challenging the Status Quo
By: Brooke Landrum
So I am not going to have an official headline
We owe a debt of gratitude to those that like to challenge the status quo. Think about the top 10 problems in your life that you would want to solve. A few years ago the difficulty of getting a cab was nowhere near the top of my list, rightfully so. It was still a pain in my life, but I was content to live with this inconvenience and accept it as the status quo. Then, suddenly, Uber came to be. A problem I never knew I had was solved and my life is easier.
I have been spending a lot of time lately thinking about problems that we don’t know we have until they get solved.
I saw a vintage ad for RadioShack the other day and it showed many different products for sale that today are all on our cell phones: a landline telephone, a walkman, a GPS, a calculator, an alarm clock, a camera, a camcorder, etc. Remember these?
We had no idea how inconvenient it was to have to carry all of these things until they were finally melded together. For so long, it was just the way things were and most of us never thought about any other way to do it. We are so ingrained in the status quo that we never think to challenge it.
This isn’t a diss
I am not making a social commentary saying we are stuck in a rut or anything. It’s just what we do as humans. Cavemen lived in the dark and didn’t think to change until a tree got struck by lightning and their entire world changed.
Changing the status quo is hard, it even seems impossible most of the time. It is very easy to stay the same when expectations are clearly set and you are pretty good at meeting them. Even if you did want to do something radical, where would you start? Most people don’t know, so they don’t try.
This tendency is one of the biggest challenges for innovative businesses. It is hard to get people excited for a product that solves a problem they don’t know they have. Not many people sit in their offices thinking “man I really wish my dashboards would just tell me a story about what I need to know.” So they don’t Google that problem, so they don’t learn about data storytelling, so they don’t learn about Narrative Science.
You’re not inventing fire though, so what’s the deal?
We are challenging the status quo in a new way. We are taking the change that came when business intelligence and data visualization tools came to the mainstream in the market and taking it one step further.
We are not challenging data. We are challenging WHY you want data. Do you want to stare at a dashboard, that you don’t understand, or do you want to figure out what is important in your data? Do you want the why and the how? Or do you just want the what?
We are challenging the mental model people have for how they get their data. We want the idea of having to look across multiple platforms to get all the information you need to be absolutely absurd to people. We want them to only accept efficient data consumption. We want a new paradigm. We want you to read a story.
And that is exactly what we are doing. If you asked someone at Narrative Science to go back to the “status quo” way of analyzing data, they would likely question why it’s not a story. We’re not perfect, but well on our way… It’s the old joke about not being able to unsee something once you’ve seen it. It’s the “curse of knowledge”. We have our sales team prepping for pipeline meetings with Lexio. The RevOps team has a monthly metrics presentation called, “This Deck Should Not Exist”. Even our engineers have found ways to incorporate it data storytelling to manage performance. Our paradigm has shifted. We have challenged the status quo and are better off for it.
We don’t want to hoard this newfound freedom, we want to share it with the world. We want to talk to you and we want to change your data consumption paradigm. Trying Lexio is like jumping from the old Radio Shack ad into the new iPhone. You’ll never understand why you stayed in the past for so long. We promise you will never see your day to day the same.
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