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Data and Advanced Analytics: A Key to Survival


Nope nope hello and welcome to transform. I'm your host. Jim reuss foul drancy. Oh the Digital Bank report and Co publisher. The financial brand when people discuss the importance of data and analytics in banking much. The attention is focused on statistical models the ability increase back office efficiency the importance of various of risk in fraud and how data is the foundation of digital transformation. What is often missed? His how data analytics for the backdrop of an exceptional consumer experience product innovation contextual engagement proactive financial recommendations and the future financial services distribution all rely on data and advanced analytics. Bottom line life and death of financial Organizations in a post covert nineteen world will depend on how consumer insights are collected and how they used for the customers benefit. We're very fortunate to need to be joined by Ryan Caldwell and Brennan Co founders of the technologies located in an area referred to as the silicon slopes right outside Provo Utah one of the most highly regarded and awarded information technology firms in Financial Services. Amex worse with more than two thousand organizations that reach over thirty million users today to discuss the importance of data and dancing legs as the lifeblood to financial institutions consumerist. The future of humanity show gentleman first of all. I need to share that when I was developing the foundation of the banking transform. Podcast last year. You both were one of the first important views I wanted to do. Not just because I consider you both great friends but because I believe your organization is an amazing example of how culture can drive results. I had the privilege to watch. Amex grow from a few great people to a relatively large organization without losing his personality. It's Mojo passion for doing good a walk through the halls of them is always a major high for me reflecting what both of you are who you are as human beings. So can you take our listeners? Back a little bit to the beginning and share how you wanted to build your firm in an how you have kept it on track all these years. Sure brand new start. Yeah go right ahead so you know. It's it's interesting when you're starting a company. There's this hope envision of what you want accomplish long-term and then there's these kind of intermediary visions the saying man. You just get here. What would that be like if we could just get along the way finding people who naturally already resonate with what you're building? I think is key to building the right Culture Nabil big sustainable company and we've kind of followed that as a company I think brandon myself in a few of our other exacts I could say like an eight Gardener James Daughter in a few others down fit this paradigm where when Brandon I I met. It was like to tuning forks getting closer together. They just start resonating right and it. It's a natural occurrence in both brand nights to building our companies separately so I founded an extra money. Desktop and Brandon had founded my jibe which essentially my job in money desktop became what Amex is and when we first met the sales individual had approached Brandon at a conference. I'll him tell that part of the story movies Michelangelo. I'm not sure and it said. Hey you should really talk to her. Ceo If you're thinking about overselling if you're thinking about combining efforts with another company and that led to a trip out to Utah where brand came out and from the moment we started talking about what we wanted to build and this vision that we both had it was just commonality. Commonality that resonance again if you can just imagine to tuning forks getting closer together. And they're just vibrating stronger and stronger and throughout that conversation by the time it ended. Were just like this is going to happen another. We're GONNA find a way to join the suffered a pretty incredible journey at the time. We're in Indianapolis. We were like six people or something like that. We're super small and in Provo. Was the money desktop team at least twice as big but also really small to your earlier point Jim and the truth of the legend. There's always legend and there's always truth and all these things but fortunately this time. The Legend has the convenience of being true was that I never left Provo in fact. I haven't been back to Indianapolis since which makes me feel awful for all of the friends that I have there. But in a decade I have not been backed. Indianapolis in fact we sent movers and stuff back to pick up my stuff but I never went back to Indianapolis and just decided to stay in. Utah and started plowing forward. And you know it's been an incredible journey. And when you Ryan and I are different people in so many aspects and the same in so many aspects where we say you know. It's not cut from the same tree at least from the same forest because there's direction there's drive. There's you know all of these things that you have to have resonance on or else you're going to have a really difficult like building experience and I tell that the new entrepreneurs all the time one. I always recommend having somebody to build with two. How do you figure out where your resonance is because if you can't work together in the toughest of situations don't build a company together it's going to be emotional? It's GonNa be hard. It's going to wreck you one day and it's going to have you sailing high the next day and that has been like the journey of mix. I mean like I ran and I talk about the roller coaster ride nearly every single week. We're at some T- Downer and like you either. Have somebody that that you can join with in that journey or don't go build a company with somebody else because it's going to be really really really difficult and it's been awesome. Well it's funny. 'cause I interviewed in the previous podcast. Tom Peters who wrote the passer for excellence in search for excellence thriving on chaos and all these other books. But I said you've written over eighteen books. Is there anything that has really resonated from the first book to today and he goes people? It's all about the people if you don't hire the right people. It doesn't matter how much skill they have and he goes. You know the thing that can ruin a company is finding people have great skills but are jerks and you know it's basic stuff but I think one thing that you see when wig whenever I'm with anybody from Max. It doesn't matter if you're an event in sundance red money twenty twenty or at innovator or in your offices there's not a person doesn't have a passion for what they do. Passion can't be built. Passion doesn't happen because you've got the great break room passionate you hire for passion and the rest tends to take care of itself. You know it's interesting as your mission. Statement and the value proposition are to say the least a bit ambitious with a mission that you have to empower the world to be financially strong and value statements such as advancing mankind changing the arc of humanity having exuberance for life and a belief in radical honesty and the desire to fail quickly. How do you measure yourself? How do you measure others against these values? I think one of those critical parts is when we were forming the team on a lot of our between brandon and I but also between the top EXAC early team. Right were around. What are we care about or around what drives us? What motivates US and in the interviewing process is we've added team members for quite a while every single interview. I would be the final interview and I'd always ask people tell me about something in the world that you're super passionate about and what's interesting is a lot of people would think. I'd be asking something about our industry or about our company and I wasn't I was asking generally. Is this someone where when they see a problem out in the world they have to fix it like it. Just things eat at them and it can't be everything because that's overwhelming. But they tend to find things like man we we really should fix. It could be something that's related to democracy or could the environment or whatever it is right but if they have that passion is a neatly inside of them as long as your mission is meaningful. So if you're your purposes accompanied is true and it's not fake then people will resonate with that if they're Driven in the first place. So that's why one of our our very first value of our seven values is purposeful contribution so we found that people who believe in that tend to resonate with meaningful companies. It's interesting because again it is. You can do great things if you're passionate about where you're going. You can do a great presentation if you're passionate about what you're speaking about you can reach go or at least get further in it. If that passionate again is there and at the end of the day when you can combine. The I'm going to quote Brandon. I think here if you can combine passion with purpose that even takes to a higher level. And what's interesting is I read those things and say. Oh my God these kind of things you hear a lot of companies say and then. I said okay. I know that know about your company. I can't think of anybody then wouldn't say you play against these all the time and it's obvious that we're lost. You GotTa Go Square peg round hole kind concept but you know what it is. Is that one of the values that have been kiddyish accessories. Years is your belief that data rules all that everything is somewhere founded on the ability to get numbers and get data around it vast assortment of your go to market products are based on the power of data and making insights tangible to the end consumer. How do you help? Firms leverage their vast amounts of data that in many cases especially in financial institutions and especially in the smaller organizations are in different silos. Say just off the bat one of the things that you find particularly in Ryan myself and so many others mexes with a very engineering mindset. You Know Ryan has spent a lot of his career being an engineer. I've spent most of my career being an engineer. And so we although we have these tracks around passion and often often you know. Passion is used as a proxy for emotion and so people say William must not be data driven. Because you're passionate but really at the center of it is we have this amazing engineering mindset. About how do you bring together data? How do you measure things out and you put metrics around things and then how do you add semantic value to things and so instead of just saying this is a string that's from a transaction and it tells us that it was a starbucks? What is starbucks? Where did they actually that? Starbucks exists was the GEO location for it. What's the merchant? What's the hours? What's all these other things? And so as you join together this idea that like we are achieving something greater than any of us could achieve individually and you join that passion with that engineering mindset. It's almost like we can't stop coming up with products that's probably our biggest problem and ms like literally every week. We have a meeting about. Like what do we kill because we expand products faster than we can communicate them internally like it's one of the weird things of like working with a very passionate and yet very engineering mindset at group of people like it's so strange no lack of ideas? Well yeah and I think the desire to solve desire to contribute so everyone from engineering product over to sales. Everyone is looking at it saying wow. That's a problem we solve that and so it's hard to hold that back to say okay. We've got to stay focused on solving the problems. That are the most pressing. But it's a fun problem to have because it's exciting to look at all these things but it's definitely we a problem of wanting to tackle things we have a problem Focus that's interesting because as a current example. The PC small business loan program was a complete disaster. Yup I'm a believer both the political and business world that I don't care whose father was about something happened yesterday. But what are you going to do to Salva tomorrow because pointing fingers assign blame? That doesn't move the process forward. So be it the fact that the government drop something. The laps bankers have wasn't completely well-thought-out. And the fact that ninety five percent of the bank out there were not digital which made it very difficult to take something put in play and change parts of it. If you're a paper based organization in any way shape or form this small business loan program was not really the gift to look and when you have need out there and the small businesses were in tremendous need for a solution. Any delay is extraordinary. And what happened was within a matter of. I would say days and it was very quick. You guys came up with a solution that you for the most part said. Hey banks were offering. It is free use. You can use this to move your whole process forward how that happened in a room. We're talking about development in a completely remote environment where there's no two engineers working side by side I've got to say I mean that was something. The idea was talking to customers about it but products in engineering and I mean they just jumped on this problem and I mean I think brandon you guys were straight through the weekend crazy hours both During to bring that into reality yeah I mean it was a call with one of our partners on a Friday evening and we had been talking internally. We've been having meetings internally about. Hey what can we do to help the industry in general and so we had already been having conversations? About what can we open source? What can we put in the hands of individuals with the lowest friction threshold such that they can start to get enabled digitally and we can help them? And we had a very close partner of ours. Reach out on Friday and we're on the call Friday night and they said hey like we are trying to push all of this data into the VA's portal and none of it's working. I mean it's taking US hours to put in one application and we can't figure this out like we have to say mercy and ask for help and so we ended up on this phone call and we called together a group of about ten engineers. Qa product people and said hey like here's this problem. This problem looks a lot like a lot of problems we saw before and so let's not reinvent the wheel. Let's use existing frameworks infrastructure. Things that we already used a day out. And how quickly can we spin up? Something that's going to be able to go to market and that was it Friday at six thirty PM probably and I called Ryan and I was like a F- Y I found the thing we can do. We can push it out to the market. We can give it to everybody for free. We can open up the source it's going to be royalty free like let's figure out a way to do that and started running with legal. About how do we license it? How do we do also their stuff right? And so that was Friday at about six o'clock and Sunday at about six o'clock so about forty eight hours later. We had our first loan submitted and uploaded into each ran and this last round like VP number. Two you know we've done more than twenty thousand loans and are pushing right now thousands a day. You know through the network that we've built up you know. It really did happen that quickly. The core thing though that I think of is not. Oh my goodness look at this huge problem that we solve like this. It's actually how do you create an organization that works on the Fidelity of day so that you can say security? We need a pen tests and we need you know vulne scans and we need certifications by tomorrow and Legal. We need new licensing by tomorrow and we need another contract by tomorrow. We need Blah Blah Blah Blah Blah Blah and like that entire organizational structure built on. I would say the fidelity of less than a day is actually what causes you to be able to say. Yes Chuck Line. Let's go and Sunday were Rowland. And now we have hundreds of banks that are powered by some level and quite frankly when Ryan. I discussed it that first evening. We're Kinda like Gabby you know. I'll bet a banker to is going to be interested just like took off like it wasn't. It wasn't a banker to so question using this as the backdrop. We've always said the data and insights and ten the backbone upon which everything else in banking bill but has covert nineteen almost highlighted the fact that the survival of a financial institution the life and death of financial choose is really going to be based on how well they can use data advance insights and apply to the digital way to serve consumer. And we've we've talked about forever but Cova nineteen pretty much highlight the fact that guy. It's real now. You just had an almost under dropped it you go. What what you faked before. You can no longer fake going forward. I think it's similar to a heart attack because a wake up call. I think it what happens is it brings into focus the idea. Everyone knows that you should have a healthy heart. You should have low cholesterol. You should exercise. You should have a good diet. We all know that and so it's not that any of the underlying facts have changed at all with Kobe. Nineteen the reality of where everything was heading. Always was that it. You're going to have to have transitioned to not just digital. But you have to have a beautiful incredible powerful digital experience and you can't you don't have a hope of achieving that without really great underlying data and so this has always been true. It's just like a heart attack. It brings into focus like it's the wakeup call and so the acute pain becomes immediately present. And then all of a sudden you say okay. I've got to make the decision. I'm I gonNA change my behavior now. One of the really interesting things with the whole data journey is that we've already seen all the the industries around baking. Go through this that if you're going to offer up great content via the TV or whatever it might be well if you can't get the data of what people watch how they watch it what they click on what view what they read the description of but choose not to watch all that data netflix. So data has created an environment where they can gather data and react to it. Amazon has created an environment where they can gather data. Act on it. Google from research has done the same thing. The whole idea that banking would not want people in these channels where they can digitally see exactly how they're interacting with their money. What they care about what they're checking and then be able to use that data with the sole purpose of better serve in that consumer. If a bank doesn't do that and other banks GonNa do it or new fintech that will eventually become. We'll do it. And they're going to take those customers mindshare. They're gonNA disintermediated that customer from the banks don't do it is interesting because it's not just the first touch your banks has implemented the P P. Program for instance. There's already discussion about the disaster. That's on the back end of this. Which is oh by the way we have to prove that these organizations actually use the funds for what they're going to do. And how do you get into the? There's no liability the small business case that they're going to actually get that money for free again. It gets down to if you don't have that in a digital format it's almost impossible work with but as we're all working remote also it's not like we can pass paperwork from one person to another to another organization and it's a lot easier brandon your teams in every bells teams to be able to to work with this dynamic of data and insights inexperience. When you already have a digitized I look now and I go. The organization said were fate. What I call faking digital on an account opening where they said they had digital. We ended UP SEVENTY PERCENT OF ORDERS. It said they had digital account opening and then two questions later he said. Brandon seventy percent of those said. Yes I go. Well I guess we different our definitions of digital but those seventy percent that requires me come in the branch. All of a sudden couldn't open accounts because they didn't really have complete digital experience. And one of the things that you do allow of the other Susan providers now is you're working with data this not the cleanest you clean up you make it look better you take silos. That are completely different and bring them together. But overall I think as you mentioned brand is that at the end the experience is going to be the key and the ability Ryan to actually make the data hits the consumer because a lot of in banking as I remember going I events out in Sundance and we talked about how people are using their great services of Amex and nine tenths of them said. Well we're using it to definer customer reason all back office and it was right when don had joined the company. He's looking at him going. Oh my God. And he's he's the marketing guys. We send you're going. Nobody's using it for the customer even sees where there's no value proposition here. How do you help your financial institutions? Actually take data from being a back office function to being a front office value proposition. I think at the beginning of that. It's finding a use case that you can do that. That has low friction and high value right. Like that's always the thing where you can insert technology. Is You know lowering the friction as much as possible and increasing the value as much as possible and one of the things that we talk about. All the time is one of the first decisions that you make when building something is what are computers. Good at versus. What are they not good at and I know it seems like the simplest razor to cut with but this is like literally a conversation that we have on a frequent basis is water computers. Good at their great at just sifting. Hey all day long all day long. They'll do it. It's like we talk about robotics. They'll just do it all day. Long across billions of things create associations between billions of things and so one of the very lowest friction things with the highest value where you include technology where it's good is just in cleansing data for the purposes of perceived fraud because so many people believe in. I mean when you're in banking long enough right. I was experienced previous to this endeavor that we're on when you're in this industry long enough you realized that the life or death of many financial institutions is how efficient they can operate a call center. Because that's where there's huge amounts of human capital there's huge amounts of infrastructure investment. And if you can operate it well then you are going to have better efficiency better profitability and you to serve the community's better and I would say that is definitely one of the first landing zones that we step in with technology and say let's automate this perceived fraud problem and start pushing out clean data so instead of saying you know C. H. v. You know. Csi One two three four. Did you shop here? We can say Chevron in Lehi Utah at the corner of main and fourteenth. You bought gas and like just doing that. We see call center volumes. Go Down with a case. Study out there. You know with one of our partners but we see this over and over again and so you find that lowest friction highest value place where you can enter and then you just hit rate was the next thing we're going to on you know I would say that is the beginning of that journey that you're asking about both of you in the rest of your firm are not shy about your belief. The data can open doors to financial inclusion can empower humans to make better decisions and even more lofty can actually improve people's lives. Can you explain that a bit? How do you act against that? I think that yeah. That's quarter our entire. Culture is our belief that data is the thing that is going to enable that passionate. We talked about at the very beginning and I think that for us. That doesn't just apply in our application in banking technology. I mean it's touched. Our personal lives on most occasions. And there's a phrase that I've come to love the last few years which go through tough times and and your understanding of Life Your paradigm and life changes and for me. This expression of life happens for you not to you the whole concept that these challenges that come up for banking our opportunities to grow these challenges that come up in our personal lives are opportunities to grow. We just have to embrace it but the ability to grow in. That opportunity is precluded. If you don't have access to data and i went through some personal challenges with my family is last year's jimmy visited my family when my daughter was in the hospital and a lot of that whole mental paradigm of going after the data looking. Okay this is a tough situation or this is a big obstacle to overcome. It seems insurmountable. How CAN WE LEVERAGE DATA TO GET CLARITY? And so because that's culturally at our core. When we look at the financial industry we look at these people who are stressed out maxed out in their personal lives who feel stuck in their jobs or feel like they can't make that risky to go jump careers or to start their own company and then we look at how empowering the financially strong changes all of that and it literally has these ripple effects. It's really hard to truly calculate the power of a community a country that's financially strong and all the things that that means but when we look at that. The person can't do it without data. Brandon made a really good point about saying as soon as you just see the truth of the transaction you can now as a human interpret doing care about it and the computer getting better better and not just cleansing the transaction but saying Okay I Clinton for you and I've kind of identified what I would estimate to be. Its value to use or new product pulses. An example takes all of that data and it says all right we've seen that when users tend to get data animalistic like this they want it surfaced better this type of group so maybe a baby boomer cares about it this way but a baby boomer. Who's rural cares about a differently than someone who's in a city centre and so as we look at all of this data. Can the machine understand the most meaningful way to surface data to that end users? That injured can just focus on living their life in in accomplishing things that they want to separately from having to manage their money on a daily basis when fifty. I visited China in January and saw that there's organizations there that because they have so much data because they collected from so many different sources including mobile devices person uses their mobile phone thing this nature it allows them to offer financial services to everybody. Because you're not using just traditional credit risks dynamics credit scores do not show of a person a loyal person paying rent or utilities. It doesn't talk about a person's personality. The way they how their life transacts are or how they make payments with a mobile device. It simply looks at what? I'M GONNA call data. It's amazing how within reach. Financial inclusion is how within reach the ability to manage. Your money is but we just haven't traditionally done a really good job because we continue to use older data sources that are not as complete doesn't describe person personality at all and I think that's why by a cultural level why it's so important and I think Brandon would strongly agree with me that if you're culturally always looking for. How do we solve problems with data? How do we take this passion of saying? That's something that we. This is an outcome. We want to avoid or this is a outcome that we want to encourage so then based off of these passions how we want the world to be. How can we take that back to using data if that's not at the Cultural Center of the organization then you're going to be blind to the opportunities to have it affect your industry a totally automatically? Think of you play how you practice if you're practicing in your organization and you're making decisions off of data that you're collecting working through that culturally then as soon as you confront the reality of the frontlines of of our industry. Then you're immediately thinking through patterns that way in creating that type of organization and it automatically happens and so that's one of the reasons that you know you see that reflected internally and then projected out Turnley Externally is because you know we play how we practice and we practice internally with that same type of rigor and then we take it to the field every time. And that's you know where you you see the experiences of people that we work with one of the things that we I think have always done. Well haven't really liked marketed. A Lot. You know we've opened sourced more than eighty libraries from our infrastructure. And so we've always had that mentality with the SBA. Pcs people were till it got headlines and so it's a little bit of the difference between the mentality and the reflection of the mentality that gets the headlines but like we continue to think about that and say okay. How can not only what we do be sold to the industry but also how can what we do sustain well beyond our existence so that because we are not only stewards of the business we are stewards of the world around us and that means that there are some things that matter more than driving profitiblity and one of the one of the aphorisms that we managed to internally is purpose over profit and so let's make sure that we are thinking it'd be one of the one of the things that we do every quarter when we come up with quotas. It was we say. Okay here's your quota. Here's the numbers. This is the value the dollar value of that quota. But let's also map that over here and what's the outcome value of that quota? How many millions of people's lives will be impacted as a result of that quota? Now go after the millions of people's lives go after that and I promise the dollar value of your quota will be met no problem at all and so like it's all about that balance between understanding the tangible quantifiable things that you can measure and in the qualifiable things that are important of the outcomes of those measurements and we just play practice with practice at internally would bring into the field every time and usually. I am not the one to use sports analogies you. The proof in the pudding sometimes is that. I'm going to do a bit of a pivot here and discuss we've talked about. How data is the Lifeblood? The difference between life and death of financial institutions going forward. Because you can't fake it anymore. It's been brought to the forefront and consumers now if my mother has been ordering groceries digitally and over the last eight weeks have them delivered and the delivery has gotten better and better knowing what she needs next. The consumers become very wise anomaly. How much information. And how can be used to her benefit but also how she may want to communicate with their banker going forward. We're using a video cast right now and I try to remember if I did any kind of video on my computer before. Covert in March. And now I think everything is a zoom meeting. Everything's video and assumption but it raises the bar overall but when you look at what you do as a company as you mentioned it. It's deeper than just doing purpose. Over profit your company as you both are very intimately aware has actually saved two lives win the team that is all formed around serving financial services companies and billy financial solutions but Brandon. On Your case your your stage four cancer survivor after very frightening prognosis and I think aged thirty three youngster. F Four years ago. Yeah we're given only a few months to live the team. Max Rallied together to find a better option for you. Can you explain a little bit about how that whole all transpired in? What actually happened there. Well I will try to explain a little bit of it. You Know Ryan and I could probably do a fifty hour show on that occurred between the beginning of that and where we are today at least and so it was quite a shock as you might imagine nobody expects to be thirty three and told my first prognosis was in fact. I remember I. I just walked out of Ryan's office. I was expecting a call from the doctor so the left side of my face had gone paralyzed. They thought that I had bell's Palsy and it went for too long went for two months that had this bell's Palsy and they said Hey let's do some other scans and so they did these scans and they said. Hey we're going to give you a call on on Friday morning and we'll let you know the results of the scans but there was no thinking that it was a big deal and so I was walking into Ryan's office and I was like. Hey Man I'm GonNa you know I don't remember what I was doing. I was leaving to go back home to visit my family or something. Like I'm GonNA head back home and this is my family. I'll give you a call whenever I get the results and I literally go down the elevator and I get the call from my doctor at the bottom of the elevator in the building. And he's like. Hey I'd normally call you in for this but there's just not enough time and so you'll stage four cancer there's eighteen tumors in your lungs there's tumors throughout your head and your neck and you know you probably don't have thirty days but you certainly won't be alive in ninety days and I was like I think he called the wrong guy. This is a sad sad phone call. But it's not my phone call somebody else's Cau- and he's like no no he's like we've checked and double checked and despite the fact your quality of living is high and all this other stuff like it's about to hit you like a wall because you've got these tumors everywhere and like it is consuming your body and it's consuming very quickly and so I remember I went back up the elevator. Back in Ryan's office. I Remember Ryan looking at me and going. What are you back here for? You know and I sat down like in a in a chair and in his office like we so often due to chat and you know just emotionally kind of lost it as you might imagine and said hey man like this is unfortunately the end of the journey for me like I just got this call and you know they're saying thirty days and maximally ninety days and there really are no options and it's everywhere in my body and this is just the anomaly of the anomalies that occurs so I ended up flying back home anyway to see my family. Obviously now I have to talk to my family face to face about some of the worst news I've ever had in my life and that weekend Ryan and so many individuals from I mean product individuals engineers all these other individuals. Get together all weekend and just start. I mean again. It comes down to what computers good for and if you have that mindset like that you need to process huge amount of data in a small amount of time. How do you go about it? And how do you rely on computation? And they spent this weekend just like burning through as much data as possible reaching out to scientists and doctors and all this other stuff and I flew back on that Monday and they had a whole plan. These huge. It's like six feet wide masses like plan over this wall and they're like hey here's the twenty six days. Here's the sixteen. Cancer centers are going to visit. Here's your plights all lined up your back to back like here's all scientists. You're going to visit with. Here's all the doctors are gonNA visit with. Here's the experiments that we've processed. Here's the ninety nine percent of them that we've thrown away and said they're probably not applicable. Here's the one percent of that we're going to like push on like as hard as possible and here's like the set of plans that you know we're going to do a genetic analysis and we're GonNa Boom Boom Boom Boom Boom. Just everything's lined up to like the our right of like back to back. I mean Ryan for the next month are on flights back to back to back to back just all throughout the country quite frankly after this experience and it was one of the things that kind of makes the company better after this experience raising money as easy as an entrepreneur used. Always talk about raising. Money is like you're looking for like one yes in a C. Knows and it's like yeah but like finding a yes and he knows about capital is low stress and easy finding a yes in a sea of knows when you have thirty days to live and you have to fly between like cancer centers to find a scientist. Say Yes. Do you like that is hard and stressful and anxiety. Inducing again and you know of all the people we went and visited with three people say yes and so of probably the sixteen scientists doctors we had talked to with three people. Say yes and say hey. I will experiment. I don't think that you have a chance of survival regardless and the longest prognosis that we got in that period. If we engaged with one of these people and they're wonderful human beings. I mean just wonderful human beings. I'm still grateful to this day that they were willing to engage but they all said you won't live twelve months for sure even if we engage even if it works to the degree that we think it can work to. You won't live twelve months and so like it's your choice. I mean this and we had like tons of hard hard conversations but we just you know in that thirty days pulled the trigger and said yeah like let's go and went to Danafarber get treated there for sixty days that failed. It was really hard and difficult like a cutting edge. You know targeted therapy. That failed and it is a hard hard experience living in Boston and going through that and then went to Fred Hutch of Seattle and luckily this study at Fred Hutch worked. And I'm still alive today and have had most of my tumor volume go away as a result of this study that we found at Fred Hutch. But the interesting part to me. Like there's so many interesting facets to this that I can talk about all day long like one. The first thing that just comes top of mind to me which is a problem. We have in our industry in general around diversity. Is that the only three people that said yes. In the Sea of people we went and talked to where the three women that we talked to. And I still can't process like as an individual of like okay. Why in this field of oncology do the three women say I'm willing to experiment on a guy that I think maybe at the end of his life but I'm at least willing to take a shot versus every other individual that we talked to send now we'll give you morphine? You can die and that was literally are meeting. And you've never seen Ryan called angry until a doctor is saying no. We're not GONNA do anything we'll give you more you're going to die. It's it's an emotional and horrible thing but You know the the second thing that that came out of that so that was absolutely fascinating that you have. The people in these are the three individuals who are willing to take a chance willing to experiment willing to do something bold but the second thing was that very first weekend that the team processed all these studies and Organiz them in prioritize them the actual top one they prioritize that weekend was the one that ended up working. And so like. It's just mind blowing to me that you have this team of non-medical individuals right like who we're just going full force into the wall trying to figure out like how do we separate the wheat from the chaff and determine. What is the Horse? We're going to bet on because you're not going to be able to bet on a couple of horses or a few of them. You're only going to be a bit maximally on to. And so what are the ones that we're going to bet on? How are we gonNA take this field of options and shrink it down to a couple and the number one that came out of that weekend was actually the one that ended up working? And that's just stunning to me to think of the probability of that and then also just to imagine like in of touch. Every single time I think of it is just to think of the team. You know it. We're able to put together and that that Ryan lead through that weekend to say hey in in fact. The aphorism that we came up with this weekend was seemingly impossible certainly improbable but necessary and so like don't get caught up in the bureaucracy of decision making. We gotta make decisions in three days. That are going to impact the rest of Brandon life whether it is thirty days or thirty years and we have to make that decision in three days and there's not a committee that can weigh in. We gotta just go and I mean I think it's obviously fundamentally changed. My life in ways that it would be impossible to articulate. But it's it's changed how we operate as a company how we think is individuals how we escalate things and prioritize things simply stunning endeavor. And I you know again. I'm trying to help some of the shortened version of this once it also I was talking to the CEO of limited insurance couple days ago and he said the thing that stands in a way of disruption and change is legacy thinking and I think that plays a big role in not wanting the way your company addressed it gives. It's normal to say stuff happens and we're going to have to deal with. We're GONNA address it. I Know Ryan's not that kind of person and it says loud by your friendship but it's also about the doctors. Those people had to say I'm going to step out of my comfort zone and I'm GonNa let go of all legacy thinking about what I believe will probably happen of this. And even they cushioned their best. A little bit to do something different and Brian to have that happen in. Your firm once is not only life changing in business changing environment it changes the whole psyche of the organization forever and the culture but unfortunately lightning struck twice in a different way. You in a situation with your daughter and again you relied on the team the data the analytics and the six foot spreadsheet that I actually saw in the hospital room that looked at every possible scenario and the result of dynamic to save your daughter's life. Can you share some of that because and by the way around video because I can't get through this ever without tears it's hard for me not get emotional? Either you know kind of you know. It's a long story about what happened with Brandon It's a beautiful story but I love Brandon like a brother. I feel incredible gratitude getting to build of people that care so much about and when that news came. I remember. Brandon's I was in. You told me you weren't gonNA fight. It is said he said I got accept this and he had close people to him whether it's family or friends who were in the medical field. That said the same thing. This is a death sentence. If you spend the last few months trying to fight it you'll feel sick and you'll waste the last few months of your life that you have in house a tough time. But I remember just feeling the strong impression that people like Brandon. All people are worth saving but Brandon's Using unique individual in the world is so much better we need as many unique individuals. We can keep as we can say you know. It was a worthwhile effort to try to see if there was a possibility in. We're realist realistic. We know that sometimes things are possible but again going back to the data side and both these stories with Brandon with my daughter with cancer. I remember coming back to a house that I both my brothers had him. Come over and said I need your clear your weekend and help to start researching with me and we brought up big whiteboards in my house and cleared whole rooms and and said look. Cancer's is not as much as it feels like. The boogeyman emotionally were again. We're passer people but we're not emotional people or out of control of Basra people. We said it's not the boogeyman their science. Here it's it's code. Your body is somehow following a sequence of codes to what's happening and we may not be able to find out but if we can we can now decide will the passion of this is someone we love and who is. The world is so much better off if they are able to not. Just stay alive but thrive. It's a worthwhile endeavor. How can we use data to accomplish it so when what happened to my daughter happened to my daughter where she routine sickness You know was significant. You'll get a couple of viruses in a little little tiny to natural get pretty sick and we just WanNa be precautious and we took her into the emergency room and she needed oxygen probably at that point because she was having trouble and so it was a wise thing to take her into the hospital but we never could have fathomed that there would be the mix that there was and unfortunately a lethal drug was given to her accidentally. It was not discovered for quite a while. And there's a whole story to that but I'll hope condenser and a what ended up happening. Is they gave us options of saying? Same brand. Said she won't survive and so I remember my wife and I sang. She can survive. Her heart can survive. We she can recover and for us again. It wasn't the thing of blindly believing we just said. Let's look at the evidence. Let's look at the data. What happened to her so in our unwillingness to accept that this just randomly happened to. We can't explain it. We're like we'll their science data here. Something had to cause this and that 'cause has to have a certain amount of damage damage Kansas amount of recoverability. There's this whole process is like a flow. Chart of mapping out. That's the same thing with Brandon of saying. Okay we'll cancer this four vectors of attack to beat this cancer back with what's available without the market. So he's the same approach. You're saying well who is having success with pediatric cardiac recovery after a drug overdose or after a incorrect medication. Being given and what does that. Look like in the experts in this of course the first thing is where they're having success in the world. They're having huge success in Germany. Who are the experts there? And so from there this whole thing unpacked into a took a trip out to Germany met with the doctors. They're person talks to the people who actually invented the medical device. That was on hurt. The life support device the shoes on and she was on life support for five and a half months little tiny two and a half year old. She had two surgeries where they had to open up her chest and pull apart or just to be able to go in and operate on her heart at two and a half and again. It's it's hard to not get emotional. And she overcame Miracle Case but we had to put as many odds in our favor than hoped for that vehicle. And it's the same thing that happened with Brandon. Is We just put as much as much research as we could we mapped out the best possible path using logic and data and then syndicated last bit is out of our hands out of our control? We just have to hope that you know universe God and everything is on our on our side right and but we didn't need the work for someone else to do. We put in the work right and we definitely did that with chloe and one of the things that's magical about as a company in about its culture is the way in which we're able to serve each other as the ebb and flow occurs and when. Brandon was in his darkest day. I've seen such an optimistic wonderful personality. You've got have really well. So he has such a buoyant force right and to see him that down in that out and to be able to have the company rally around him while we continue to thrive and grow as a company and people ask. How do you do that? How do you care so much about your people? How do you care so much about your families in your home life while also being able to aggressively build a company? And we just fundamentally believe that the two are not mutually exclusive. In fact. They're they're they amplify each other. And the fact that we've leaned in around. Brandon were stronger as company result and it was amazing times of her parent and would be working on Amex stuff. He's working on platform staff will. We're on a plane. And I'm sitting there researching how we're going to map out the protein pathways to make sure he gets the right drug for his cancer and he's like. I don't have time for that. I got an issue. The platform stays up. He's focused on the AMEX platform. And I think that that I mean if I could take video screen shot of the plane doing that is the underlying essence of what Amex is about. Is the IT service we WANNA serve so the world can be better and brandon is more worried about making sure the platforms up. We'RE GONNA plane to go visit a doctor to talk about his terminal cancer. And I'm sitting there stressed out about protein pathways to make sure he's GonNa Survive and when my time came which. I couldn't have possibly fathom that just two years later my little girl my wife and our whole world we've got two girls but our little tiny two and a half year old you know is in a hospital on life support constantly dying daily fantasy brandon who come and visit me Nate Gardener James Daughter. All the people who said we've got this. The company's continuing to grow aggressively. We've got this. You focus on your daughter. How can we help you with your daughter? That is this underlying strength that a lot of people could say well. That was a moment where the company was weakened right it was weakened when Brandon through cancer it was weakened when Ryan had his daughter in hospital and the fact that the complete opposite is true that we became stronger than ever during those times. That's I think the true magic of Max when I think what's interesting in both cases Brandon and your daughter. I've always said watch out with survivors like that. Because they are people that are totally willing to blow through walls continuously because they've lost all fear they faced the greatest fear and even a two year. Old Your daughter in in visited about nine months ago and say why she out. Good news is you saved. Your Life. The not expected benefit is. She doesn't have any fear that she can't do. And she's proven that I mean you know. Tiffany is what you've done your daughter the part that she's taken on and surprise you daily with her advancement because of not only your commitment of your wife and your ears to her but her just desire to say. I don't want to go under the impression that I can't do X. and for a youngster to have that. The tenacity says a lot but also as you said the company when you were out of the Office for so long. The company grew phenomenally at the same time and yet at the same time. I know you were feeling guilty. In trying to balance the work life balance. It's tough well and I'd be remiss if I didn't take at least as I say you know. Give my wife just an incredible amount of credit. I mean he saved lives. But what's interesting is that she was actually at the dinner. Let Brandon speak about that where she actually was across the table from Brandon noticing that he had nerves that were not properly reacting on his face and it was actually that night that we went to the Er to go see what was going on with Brandon's face which led to the discovery that cancer. So I just have to give a huge amount of credit to my wonderful brilliant wife. And I know you've got a chance to meet her and see her incredible medical knowledge but she's dedicated to what she does. She's out to save lives. That's for sure one last thing where to time of unparalleled health crisis. I know that Ryan. We've talked about a little bit before the health price even took on but the reality is the health crisis to tip of the iceberg data m annals will find the vaccine will find a cure but the reality is the overall impact of. What's going on right now is dramatic. It is impacting lives everywhere globally. It is impacting personal economies. The future endeavors of people both employment basis but also from financial basis. How do you think data analytics and firms like yours can help address the economic impact that? We're all going to be faced with that. Is going to be far greater than any of the Health Challenges. We've been up against. I mean we. We've never seen a global twenty percent unemployment rate or a tremendous percentage of our populace having in the short-term medium-term no hope of getting out from under the burden of what is happening in a short period of time how can data analytics and corporations work to make life better post virus. Well to hear brandon's thoughts on this. I can tell you that are feeling as a company. Generally broadly is that you cannot properly serve your customer. You cannot be an advocate for your customer and all companies are going to thrive are going to have to be consumer centric. They're going to have to be advocacy focused. You can't have that incredible money experience that you need to provide these users without having the foundation of that being on data that is the critical that we wish all people in this industry would really only be able to get a grip on and it'd be able to adopt that thesis Brenna. Where would you thoughts? We've talked about this Jim that you know that I read a lot and so I immediately think of this is actually one of the quotes that Kinda that we've been sharing internally is as we've been going throughout this entire journey for the last several years is you know. Read kipling wrote the poem if and he says To meet with triumph and disaster and treat those two imposters just the same and quite frankly. I think one of the things that has manifested in my life in Ryan's life and as we've seen these ups and downs. We all experience. Is that when you do? Experience the lows of the lows that we are experiencing right now in this and Democ also know that that is just as false is the highest highs as we experience but also just as fast as the economy could sank is as fast is also it can rise and so there's so many events over the history of mankind that you can say Mike goodness like farming just like the Family Farm. Just like sunk fantastically quickly. It's like yeah well Pharm Tech came about and now all of a sudden we have more efficient. We have bigger and we have wonderful. Inventions like Norman Borlaug. The Weather Defensive Week right and like all of these inventions were predicated on the idea. That first and foremost something went out of fashion failed and something had to be innovated. Comeback in the space to create a higher high than we'd ever experienced before in the important part is understanding that when you sink into that low low that you can't get lost there and you can't stop there because you have to keep driving through walls in order to figure out the innovation or invention that is going to cause us to rise and I firmly believe in that in the near midterm and long term future of the current state of our economy. I have no question about that. Is that innovators builders entrepreneurs you know all these inventors out. There are going to build for us a new future that we did not comprehend yesterday and every single institution that is suffering today in this low low is going to be a beneficiary of that next future that is being built. And there's just nothing in me that believes that it will be in any other way because that is not the evidence that we have over human history over human history the creators builders the innovators they break through the walls and we rise just as fast as we say and quite frankly I mean I know I am and I know Ryan is. We are working on the preparation for the rise. Because there's going to be difficulties in the rise and we're thinking about that every single day is how do you scale 'cause all of a sudden everybody needs what these innovations are breaking through? And so and we've seen that through things like PP. Nobody would have thought that it would have been for us to distribute five hundred billion dollars but we found out that the system can't handle five hundred billion dollars over the course of three weeks. We have to do better. I'll tell you a wrapping up. I want to thank you both for being on the show but I think more importantly I will say that. I'm counting on companies like yours. Help facilitate those financial institutions that you're in contact with to make better communities a lot of your clients. Are The committee. Banco the mid size banks that are out there. They're the closest to the small businesses. We have to do something to make it easier for finances students to help their communities grow as they have throughout time but they're going to be under stress and I think what you did with P and what you've done in the past and there's a number of things it was going to now only give banks and financial institutions hoped. They can help. Their communities could give individuals hope that they can get through the toughest times. We're already seen as you know. A higher savings rate than we've seen basically in our lifetime people are already saying. How can I prepare for the next unforeseen event? Maybe the realization is never take prosperity for granted because I know a lot of it for planning on amazing years as late as early. March things are playing out the way they normally are for most companies but I think business as usual needs to be transformed and legacy thinking needs to be shaken and again I thank you both get you really a great example. Both individually and as as corporation for what can be done if you're willing to think differently and apply data toward solutions and go back to your purpose before profits if people can remember that by the way the prophets still come. Your firm not going broke because you believe in purpose. So thank you again gentlemen. Thanks for the appreciate it. Thanks you. Well there's not much I can add. Ryan and Brandon are two very good friends and people that I look up to his to aspire to his people as well visits people. They've done a lot at Mex and for the banking community. But I think the one major takeaway for every financial institution every corporation is that you will not live. You Will Not Succeed. You not move forward without being able to apply data and advanced analytics for a better consumer outcome. That sounds very cliche but think about it for a while. Think about what you're putting your attention to and say am I applied data or just opinion and moving the customer experience forward for simply trying to save money if you put your passion and your purpose before. Prophet prophets will come and especially after Kobe consumers small businesses corporations more than ever are going to be looking for the financial partners to make them feel better about their current situation. Thanks for listening to bank and Transform. Raise the top. Five banking podcast. I generally appreciate the support you provided since we started this endeavor. If you enjoy what you're doing please be sure to subscribe to banking transformed on your favorite podcast APP. In addition take thirty to forty five seconds to show some love in the form of a review. It means the world to us. Finally we should've kept my recent articles on the financial brand and check out the research. We're doing digital transformation retail banking innovation ginger lending shoe experience and Financial Market for the Digital Bank report. This has been production of Evergreen. Podcast a special. Thank you to our producer. Lee along break an audio engineer. Sean Rule Hoffman. I'm your host Tim. Reuss stay safe and stay healthy.

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