I have a confession to make. Even though I’m “the numbers guy” at The Bridge Group, Inc., my formal math education ended with high school calculus.
Early on in my career, I believed every statistic that I encountered. “Does it have a decimal point? It must be true!” Then, one day I made a pitch to my then-CFO on why we needed a new, bright, and shiny technology. I trotted out every acceleration, impact, and ROI stat the vendor supplied.
The CFO, far from being blown away by the overwhelming “scientific proof,” dug into each number – picking them apart one by one.
I was mortified.
I learned a hard lesson that day: Math is a weapon both for good and ill. And I decided to dedicate myself to improving my math fluency. More than 10 years later, I’ve made good progress, but I have miles more to learn.
If you’re like me, and want to hold your own, here are a few resources that I can’t recommend highly enough: The book Naked Statistics, the Coursera class Analytic Techniques for Business, and Professor Jason Delaney’s Youtube channel.