I’ve mentioned in several places how much time I spend in research. There’s an interesting (to me) anecdote tied to that which I’d like to share.
I was in a meeting with a US$5MM company describing what NextStage does. Eventually the questions got around to “How did you figure this out?”
My reply (same now as it was then) was, “I did a little research.” It is, I believe, a truthful statement.
Many of the people in the room, however, rolled their eyes. Some pushed themselves away from the table we were sitting around. Most of them looked at my host as if to say, “Why are you wasting my time with this yutz?”
My host — a woman I consider one of my mentors (Howdy, Laureen!) — moved her hand slightly, a signal to everyone in attendance to wait a second before leaving the room. She asked,
Joseph, can you describe your research, please?
Me, nufratedes (Italian for “Clueless in Seattle”), said matter of factly,
Oh, I was listening to a conversation during lunch as MSU in ’87. That got me started, I published my thesis in ’91 and then…
It was 2003 in which this conversation occurred, you understand.
One of the people at the table replaced his jaw because it had dropped to the floor. “Fifteen-sixteen years and you call that ‘a little research’?”
“To me ‘a little research’ means you looked up something on the web and maybe read one or two papers on the subject.”
This time my jaw dropped. “That would be foolish and a waste of time.”
“What do you call ‘a lot of research’?”
“Oh, I don’t know…a longitudinal study, I guess…sixty-five, seventy years, perhaps.”
Did I ever mention that NextStage Evolution is a research company. NextStage Global [[(Susan closed it down shortly after she took over, hence it is no more)]] productizes and markets what comes from our research [[(Most of this is just available to our members and clients now. And you should be one if you’re not already!)]].