Can you manage uncertainty without a good grasp of numbers?


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I asked Kaiser Fung this question in my previous podcast, Interpretations of Data. The short answer to that question was

Statistics is not there to eliminate or to cure variability. Variability is something that’s out there that cannot be cured. What statistics does is to create a way for us to measure the degree of variability. Because the whole point is that if you don’t know, as you are unable to measure it, you don’t know how large or how small the variability is. You cannot find ways to minimize it. So it is certainly true that the whole point is to try to figure out how big it is.

The long answer is in this transcription of the original podcast from two years ago. Where we discussed Kaiser first book, Numbers Rule Your World: The Hidden Influence of Probabilities and Statistics on Everything You Do. It is a great introduction to the podcast this week.

Interpretations of Data

PDF Download of the Transcription

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Joseph Dager
Business901 is a firm specializing in bringing the continuous improvement process to the sales and marketing arena. He has authored the books the Lean Marketing House, Marketing with A3 and Marketing with PDCA. The Business901 Blog and Podcast includes many leading edge thinkers and has been featured numerous times for its contributions to the Bloomberg's Business Week Exchange.


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