Things I'm Thankful For

Jake Freivald's picture
 By | November 27, 2013
in thanksgiving
November 27, 2013

One of those personal things I'm thankful for. That, and broccoli-cheese casserole. Mmmm..... :) Photo courtesy of jdolenga on Flickr, licensed CC-by.

There are a ton of things I'm thankful for that don't belong on a work blog post. Suffice it to say that the personal list goes on and on and on.
Here are some specific things that I'm thankful for in this job, in this industry.
1. Customers. Few things are as cool as sharing a vision of future success with people -- and customers are always people, never just companies -- who are willing to pay you to help you achieve it. We have great customers, too. Over 200 of our customers have even allowed us to post their stories. Many of them keep coming back for new projects. Being able to work with them to achieve something important feels great and helps us earn our paychecks at the same time. Gotta love that.
2. A dynamic industry. Ten years ago, if you looked at the business intelligence or integration marketplaces, you might have thought that it was stagnating. Many people actually thought that, in fact. And there are few things worse than doing a boring job. Well, we haven't been bored! Radical changes in data architecture, real-time integration, the advent of so-called "Big Data", in-memory analytics, columnar and other new database designs, web services and related technologies, the rise of predictive analytics, the rise of data visualization and data discovery, the swing from fat client to thin client to middleweight client (browser and mobile) architectures, mobile computing, cloud computing, social networking... Look, it's a blog post, I have to stop somewhere. The point is that if you're bored in this industry, you're not really paying attention.
3. Competitors. Sure, I want to kick their butts and win more customers. But being too comfortable isn't good for business. Competitors help us discover underserved parts of the market, find new sources of revenue, and extend the vision of business intelligence, integration, and data integrity we create with our customers. 
4. Information Builders. I've been here for fifteen years, which is a lifetime in the software business. We have a unique company culture, we're totally focused on our customers, and we have cool technology. Suffice it to say that not everyone has had that experience in this industry.
There's more, but that's enough for now. What are you thankful for?