Posts tagged ‘failure’


My talk on AB testing at BDNT

On Tuesday I gave a 5 minute talk at the Boulder New Tech Meetup on the value and dangers of AB testing. It’s an area where I’ve made mistakes in the past and it was fun to share my perspective on the topic.

Here’s the entire video from the event.  I start talking around 19:22.

Thanks to Robert Reich for the opportunity to speak, Julie Penner for doing such a great job MCing at the last minute and to Dan Moore for linking me to the video.

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My interview on Mixergy

If you haven’t heard the news yet, Rob and I have decided to shut down EventVue.  As you can probably imagine, it was a incredibly hard decision.  We’ve poured the last three years of our lives into EventVue and it’s tough to say goodbye.

One of the things we wanted to make sure we did was to share some of the lessons we learned.  Our hope is that other entrepreneurs can avoid making the same mistakes we did.  Rob wrote up a good post-mortem on our blog that tells our story in pretty good detail.

On Friday I had the privilege of being interviewed by Andrew Warner on Mixergy.  To be honest, it wasn’t my greatest performance.  I’ve been struggling with a cold and there were a couple times during the interview where I found myself wishing my brain worked faster.  That said, it was a real honor to have been invited on the show and be numbered with the incredible people that Andrew has put together. Speaking of which, if you’re not subscribed to Mixergy, you’re missing out on some fabulous content. Andrew has put together a great set of interviews from countless people I respect like Jimmy Wales, Seth Godin and Paul Graham to name a few.

My interview is about an hour long and is imbedded below.  I hope you’ll check it out:

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One of my favorite quotes

Thanks Theodore Roosevelt. This inspires me every time I read it:

It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.

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Learning from wipe-outs

Over the weekend I had the privilege of hanging out with twelve of my best friends from Clemson. They flew in for MLK weekend, and we spent our time skiing and boarding up in the mountains at Breckenridge.

If you spend any time on the slopes there is one phrase you will hear a lot:

I didn’t fall this time!

I started wondering — is that really the best we can do? Is staying on your feet the best metric of success?

Sure, I could get down most slopes without falling — so why do I fall so much? I’d rather go through some brutal wipe-outs and and improve my snowboarding skills than risk becoming stagnant in my ability.

You might argue that the experience is a lot less enjoyable if you spend most of it on your face in the snow. Why not recognize your limitations and have a good time on the bunny slopes? You have a pretty valid argument. The only problem is this: you’ll spend the rest of your life on the bunny slopes. You’ll never know what it’s like to push yourself and actually succeed. Sure there will be frustration in between, but it might just be worth it.

What about you? Are you continually pushing the envelope and trying new things or are you content setting the bar just high enough not to get hurt?

Is it worth it?

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