🔤 Communicate well

abc, 123, good for you, good for me.

It doesn't matter how good an idea is if no one believes it to be true. If the best ideas require something to 'be different' then good communication is even more important.

Mike Zarren is an assistant general manager with the Boston Celtics and he said, "the communication of the information is as important, if not more important, than the actual quantitative work that you do." Think about that for a moment. It always seems like the hard part would be figuring out a secret, finding buried treasure, or solving the riddle but Zarren is saying that's not it at all. The hardest part is convincing people to join your search party.

Sports demonstrate this contrast clearly. Athletes tend to see the world visually and physically whereas the analysts see the world in numbers, like base rates. Teams succeed when they reframe their black and white numbers into full-color images.

During the Pittsburgh Pirates transition from light to heavy analytics, it was a heat map that got the players to buy-in. Good communication is a way to align stakeholders, as Warren Buffett's letters point out. Buffett said, "there are 600,000 (shareholders) but in my mind, I usually have my two sisters." That's good communication.

Good communication is also a way of framing an issue in a new way. For Zarren it's a way for players to observe their defense. For Buffett, it's a way to shape expectations. For marketers like Rory Sutherland, communicating well is everything.