Best Advice Ever For a Newbie Data Scientist

“Data is hard to come by… so your goal should be to come across as the kind of data science-obsessed lunatic who will build your own goddamn dataset if that’s what it takes to get the job done.”

The above quote by Jeremie Harris of is from his article:

It is probably the best advice I have ever come across by an aspiring data scientist.

As I tour around SE Asia and the United States talking about big data, A.I. and other geek stuff, I get asked quite often, “What skills do I need to be a data scientist.” People expect me to rattle off a series of apps, languages and programs that will help them get a good data science job. And I do often recommend they learn Python, Tableau, SQL etc.

However, my first bit of advice is to study the employer you want to work for. Find out what they need. Get curious so when you connect with the decision-makers and prepare for your interview make sure you know what you can do to help them.

Jeremie’s advice goes one better. Don’t just come ready to solve a problem, bring data with you.

The market has a lot of people trying to get started in data science so on the surface it can seem like a seller’s market. So many candidattes have a sense that they can just present themselves, their education and their skills on a piece of paper or with some kind of theoretical construct and people will be dying to hire them.

As W. Edwards Deming famously said, “In God We Trust, All Others Must Bring Data”.

Literally, apply that to your job search and I’d definitely be impressed.

Daniel Meyer heads Sonic Analytics, an analytics firm with offices in Manila, the San Francisco Bay Area and as of February 2019, Ocala, FL. With over 20 years in Big Data, Dan is one of the most sought-after public speakers in Asia and offers big data coaching and analytics training seminars on both sides of the Pacific. Dan has also recently joined the Powerteam International family as a small business analytics resource speaker.

Sonic Analytics( brings big data analytics solutions like business intelligence, business dashboards and data storytelling to small and medium sized organizations looking to enhance their data-driven decision-making capabilities. We also advocate the use of analytics for civic responsibility through training, consulting and education.

As citizens of this great democracy, we need to look at the data (analytics), plan a course of action (strategy) and share our data-driven viewpoints (presentation). This approach to a data savvy work force starts in school. So, we started an internship program to empower our youth to use Analytics, plan Strategy and Present their insights… ASP!

When not training current and future analysts, you can find Dan championing the use of analytics to empower data-driven citizenship by volunteering his expertise with schools and non-profits dedicated to evidence-based social progress like Saint Leo University’s Women in STEAM 2020 Conference.


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