Phil Simon
Author, Speaker, and Professor

Phil Simon is a keynote speaker and recognized technology expert. He is the award-winning author of eight management books, most recently Analytics: The Agile Way. His ninth will be Slack For Dummies (April, 2020, Wiley) He consults organizations on matters related to strategy, data, analytics, and technology. His contributions have appeared in The Harvard Business Review, CNN, Wired, The New York Times, and many other sites. He teaches information systems and analytics at Arizona State University's W. P. Carey School of Business.

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Rafael Nadal and interactive dataviz

Rafael Nadal is nothing less than a freak of nature on the tennis court. One oft-cited stat among tennis aficionados: Nadal routinely hits the ball at 5,000 revolutions per minute. By way of contrast, Roger Federer's strokes come in at 3,200 RPM. Put differently, "Rafa" hits the ball with 50 percent more

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Dataviz: Pretty vs. pretty effective

As I responded to the final edits on The Visual Organization, I couldn't help but reflect a bit. We've come so far since the 1990s with primitive Excel bar and pie charts. Now more than ever, it's easy to create visually compelling graphics that tell a story. Heat maps, tree maps, choropleths

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Will everyone need to learn big data skills?

Fifteen years ago, updating a website required knowledge of HTML. Now, many content management systems like WordPress, Tumblr and Joomla merely require knowledge of WYSIWYG tools like Microsoft Word. So, will the same thing happen with big data? I hesitate to say that everyone will need to learn data-related skills. I

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Dataviz: The case for subtraction

“To attain knowledge, add things every day. To attain wisdom, subtract things every day." --Lao Tzu Dataviz is all the rage these days. We just don't hear the term "chart" as often anymore. It's now a data visualization. George Carlin would be proud. Of course, not all data visualizations are

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On LeBron, big data and investing

"Big data isn't useful for investment purposes." So said my friend Walt during one of our recent arguments discussions. By way of background, Walt is not an über-successful 70-year-old investor who earned his chops well before the advents of Twitter, Facebook and their ilk. Rather, he's a man of a similar age to

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The new data world

How do employees feel about data today? It's an interesting question, and one that I address in my forthcoming book The Visual Organization: How Intelligent Companies Use Data Visualization To Make Better Decisions. As a student of data, management and technology, it's obvious to me that our relationship with data

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The data equation

As I pen these words, the Obama administration is in the midst of an absolute debacle over the botched launch of Regardless of what you think of Obamacare, it's hard to ignore what has become one of the most visible IT project failures of recent memory. Details are still coming

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Similarities between big data and dieting

Every week, it seems, I overhear someone at my gym talking about another fad diet. Cabbage-this or berry-that is supposed to magically make the pounds disappear. Perhaps there are legitimate success stories with these diets. Still, it doesn't take a nutritionist or personal trainer to realize that, for the most part, losing

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Simon's First Law of Data Visualization

There's no shortage of hype and confusion surrounding big data. Plenty of companies are starting to dip their toes in the pool despite the relative paucity of documented case studies – at least compared to ERP, CRM and BI applications. Sometimes people ask me, "Can you give me one tip

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