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Financial Investing Radio Grant Larsen

    • Business
    • 5.0 • 4 Ratings

Welcome to Financial Investing Radio, where we discuss investing in your business, the markets, real estate, and how technology can help (or hinder!).

Join Grant on his journey through Financial Investing in the markets, real estate, and amazing other areas!

Remember to subscribe and leave feedback!

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    FIR 123: Nutritional AI That YOU CAN EAT !!

    FIR 123: Nutritional AI That YOU CAN EAT !!

    In this episode, I have a guest who discusses nutritional AI that you can eat.

    Grant
    Everybody, this is Grant Larsen. Welcome to another episode of ClickAI radio. Wow. Today I have in the house with me. Mr. Daniel DeMillard, he is the CTO of FoodSpace, and I am just honored for the opportunity to meet him and to get to hear his story and what he and his organization has been doing with AI. Alright, let's jump into this. Okay, so, Daniel, first of all, welcome.
    Daniel
    Thanks for having me, Grant. Great to be here.
    Grant
    It is, it is really great to have you here and to have another another patriots in AI, right things that you guys are doing, as I got to know you. And before we started this recording, I was fascinated with the kind of work that you guys are doing and where you focus your use and application of AI. But before we get too deep into that, would you step back in time and tell us? Who's Daniel, where do you come from? And what is it that's brought you to this point to be CTO applying AI in such a cool way?
    Daniel
    Yep, so I actually studied economics and finance in school and came across an online class by Andrew Yang on Coursera. And at that point, I just absolutely fell in love with machine learning and artificial intelligence. And I was like, wow, this is absolutely what I'm wanting. Yeah, with my life. So, you know, started studying a lot. Got a job eventually at IBM Watson, and worked at a small company doing what type classification, then I was doing some consulting on the side, where I actually got connected with iosshare, Nike, the CEO of foods, but at the time, it was a lunchbox. And they were developing a consumer facing app that, you know, they were trying to pair people with recipes. And you could set up a diet profile for yourself, and instantly order things online through instacart, based on recipes that you find. And I initially got engaged with them, building a wine pairing recommendation application, where, given a certain recipe will automatically recommend a wine pairing that would go well, really well I
    Grant
    ...need that certain kind of food, you're like, Hey, this is the right, right,
    Daniel
    ...we're gonna wanna medium red wine with that right or a very sweet dessert wine.
    Grant
    Until it this where lunchbox started, they were focusing on solving that problem.
    Daniel
    They were focused on solving the one stop shop for keeping all of your recipes together, ordering food very easily. And then also being able to manage your diets, and allergens, and just make making sure all of that was really seamless. And they also had a great mission of trying to mitigate food waste, so that they could recommend given all of the stuff that you have in your fridge that would normally sit there and forget about they could recommend a recipe and for you to make of the things that you've already selected. And so
    Grant
    all right, very good. All right. So so then you bumped into them, and you started to work with them. Tell us a little bit about the transition over to food space. How did the vision change?
    Daniel
    Yeah, it was actually pretty serendipitous, and rather abrupt. So back in 2019, io was a part of grocery shop, which is a big conference in the CPG space and food industry. And he's trying to pitch this idea of lunchbox to brands and retailers to get them to sign up for it. And they all have basically kept telling them the same thing of like, hey, it's a great idea. It's super interesting. I would love to but what you're asking for with all of these like dietary profiles, and The information necessary to build these types of recommendation algorithms. It's we just don't have it, we don't have ingredients and digitized nutrition labels. And, you know, we have the very minimum. So given that that information is like, Okay, well, we've got to take a step back. So he calls me up. And he says, you know, hey, Daniel, would it be possible given a bunch of computer or a bunch of e commerce image

    • 33 min
    FIR 122: What I Don't Know - IS HURTING MY SMB !

    FIR 122: What I Don't Know - IS HURTING MY SMB !

    What I didn't know that I didn't know cause my very first startup company to fail.

    Thanks for joining, this is Grant. So we started this company, I was right out of college. And as you probably recall, I turn to my wife and said, Hey, I'm not going to take the secure job, I'm going to go do this, this startup company. So we headed to Chicago, and we started working on this company, the focus of the company was to deliver some technology solutions to the healthcare world. That's that's honorable, right? Well, as we all know, in the world of all possible knowledge, there's the sliver of things that you know, and then of course, there's there's the section of, you know, the things that you know, that you don't know, and then there's this big wedge of the things that you don't even know that you don't know. Well, what we did know was that my main partner, he had years of healthcare experience and tons of connections.
    So we knew that. All right. And then what we knew that we didn't know, was we weren't familiar with the healthcare payer details, right? We were focused on health care providers, right and the solutions around there. But what we didn't know that we didn't know, that was the level of investment that these health care providers were putting into technical solutions. It far surpassed our ability to support, right, so just a couple of us guys coming in saying, Hey, we're gonna go solve this serious healthcare problem for you. Yeah. Now, the other thing that I didn't know, that I didn't know, was that my partner was unwilling to accept input, he was unwilling to change course, and align with the market better, right. And so that unwillingness to change, that's a common challenge for many SMBs. Hackett's common challenge in big companies to, but the ones that pivot both the large as well as the small companies, that pivot, right, that shows some willingness to adjust course, with some market input. That's a critical skill set for business survival and growth.
    So of course, the key is to be open to change. And there's a few things to consider there. Number one, commitment, right, make a conscious commitment to be open number two, trust, trust that you're heading in the direction. Not that you want to say is right, but you're always heading in a direction of new knowledge, right? second, or third curiosity. So allow yourself course to experience the curiosity of not knowing, right, some that sometimes we get uncomfortable with that we want to stay safely in the things that we know. But curiosity is actually critical to the business pivoting and growing. And then fourth, is around freedom. And that's basically the freedom of experiencing something new and unexpected. So getting open to change is a critical part of any SMB. Now, you know, dive I have plenty stories of things that I didn't know that I didn't know, one of those was even years before the startup that I did. This was well before college. But before I went into college, I had an opportunity to run a business for a friend of mine, and he was going to be away from his business for a year so and so on paper, this looked great with like a great deal. He had set up about $100,000 in business contracts, all I needed to do was to fill on those and you know, keep the profit. Now, the team was small, and this was back in the 80s. So everyone had big hair Anyway, you know, to a young pre college age kid this this looks like a lot of money. So I'm thinking hey, how could I pass up such great opportunity?
    Oh, and by the way, I could use that money later for paying for college. So in my mind, it was a win win win. So I told him, yes. Well, I got a few weeks into this and he hadn't left yet. And one day I got this pit in my stomach, right? Something just did not feel right. And this not at me for several days. So I eventually got some alone time, right? Just ponder and think about this right? What is going on. And during that time, I got some clarity. And I went back to

    • 10 min
    FIR 121: I Tried It Once ... IT DIDN'T WORK !!

    FIR 121: I Tried It Once ... IT DIDN'T WORK !!

    Hey, we tried it once it didn't work, so why would I even try AI?

    Hey, this is Grant, thank you for joining in this episode. So okay, we tried it once it didn't work. Why would I even try AI? Well, it turns out the global artificial intelligence market, I think Market Insight report estimated it to be I think it top $40 billion in 2020. That's a cumulative or compound annual growth rate at 43%. That's pretty amazing.
    So there are some amazing achievements around AI. However, you know, there's still a lot of bugs to work out with this stuff. Let's take a look at some. Okay, so let's take a look at one of these failures. That was gender phi, right? 98.4% probability that the word male match to the word professor, and if you put in the word stupid and come back and say 61.7% was female prediction, oops, what the hack right? what it what a mistake. Here's another failure, right, this facial recognition, I'm sure you've heard of this one. You know, you've got some 94 year old granny who has to be held up, you know, in front of the picture, you know, in her Chinese bank, to just to get her face, right, just that there's some usability challenges there, right?
    Uber course walks away from driverless citing adolescent AI, obviously, Amazon, they axed AI for their recruitment, because they found out that we've had bias at all had a lot of bias in it. And that's, you know, eventually damage Amazon engineers realize that, that the AI was indicating that the male candidates were automatically better outs. Not good. Here's another Amazon failure. Right? There facial recognition software match 28 US Congress people with criminal mug shots. Yep. Yep, that's facial recognition thing is, is tough. All right. So in short, what does AI actually work for? Right? Where does it actually succeeding? Where's it doing? Well, well, McKinsey points out that AI is shining in the area of big companies that are now reporting 20 plus percent of their revenue coming from AI insights, that's pretty big. Two thirds of those big companies are using it to increase sales. And these companies plan to invest more into AI in response to COVID.
    So that's a success story seems like a lot of these facial recognition things. Heck, I think even IBM was applying it, you know, in some of the cancer, cancer use cases right, with with their Watson technology, and the doctors rejected it, claiming it was giving some some really bad advice. So the areas where he tends to do better is when it comes to the area of sales and sales planning. Now, the question is, is how do you identify the best AI project? What does that look like? Well, in typical, you know, typically, what you're looking for is something that's going to give some level of conversion, or attrition impact. So if you can increase your sales, conversion, or reduce the attrition of your people, that's typically where it tends to do well. So your sales and account management teams, typically are benefited from this. So you got to build a business case around it.
    In fact, there's an article by a guy by the name of Jeff Caitlyn. This is on Forbes, he pointed out a couple things here. He said, Look, typically you're looking to predict customer churn or you're looking to handle and review or handle online reviews better or improve your messaging. But the bottom line is, you're really going to build out a business case for AI much like you would other business cases. What does it take for me to put into this, what's the effort and then can I get something out of it and the place that the large companies tend to be getting some traction with it is in this sales improvement area. So three things here. Number one, AI has been bringing positive impact to sales and Supply Chain use cases number two, identify which sales or supply print you know, supply chain problem areas that you're going to focus on.
    And then number three, of course, as an SMB don't go build this out yourself. It's too costly, it takes too long to t

    • 5 min
    FIR 120: Running From YOUR SMB PAIN !!

    FIR 120: Running From YOUR SMB PAIN !!

    In this episode, we'll take a look at how to run from your SMB pain.

    Okay, welcome, everybody. So AI requires months and years of training before results are seen. Where do we heard this before? Right? Well, we saw some material not long ago, of course, and we've all experienced this on Amazon, right? Where they're spending well over $20 billion annually on you know, research and development, things like that. What they do is they collect data to give product recommendations for AI, right, and we've been on Amazon, we see a product. And of course, out of that then comes this other set of related products that might be interesting, right or might be related to what we bought. That takes a long time for them to gather that. And as an SMB, of course, we certainly can't take that long, or certainly even spend at that level to get those kinds of AI results. In fact, when you look at it, some people feel that it takes six months just to learn how to do data science. Now that's just to learn it, that's not to actually become an expert, and be proficient at it. That doesn't even include building an AI model. And then finally, eventually getting some business results. Another group, they say that it takes their teams 30 days just to get their AI models deployed and functional. As an SMB owner, you don't have time for that.
    And another set of group said, it takes six months just to build their AI models and deploy them six months, can you imagine as an SMB owner taking six months to do that? Now, I found out looking at some other stats in over 60% of the RL artificial intelligence projects. They don't even get past the initial proof of concept and data preparation stages. So you know, pay, you're just trying to figure out is this even feasible? over 60% doting get through those phases, that's, that's huge. So look, take, take the pain out of your SMB and don't even do those steps, right? Put that into the hands as someone else Unless, of course, you got you got money to burn, right and you got time to waste. I guess if you do, that's the way to go. But as an SMB owner, it makes, you know, doesn't really make sense to build out all of those teams and to take months, eventually, to get something to help your business grow. I was looking at a case study recently, where a group came back and they had used some AI. And they said, Look, the time and the effort that it took for them to find $3 million in additional sales leads, it was only a matter of a few days. That's huge. So by the time they got their data, a little bit of cleansing, and then ran it through this advanced AI platform, hey, came down to just just in a few days, they found $3 million in additional sales leads. Now the point is, that obviously is a very short time with a huge turn right a huge, huge result for this medium sized business. Nevertheless, it is indicative of the other side of the spectrum, which is you're not spending the months, lots of months, your eye to get these teams set up to go try to find some sort of business value. So to reduce the time that it takes to get value from AI for your SMB. There's three steps that I'm going to go through here writing three steps to reduce the time that it takes.
    Step number one, list the areas of your business that you're trying to move away from pain, it might be in the marketing part of your business might be around sales, or the supply chain. But the key here is you got to get specific with this because as we know as a human race, we tend to move away from pain faster than we move towards other emotions. Alright, so that's step one. list out the areas of your business that you're feeling the pain. Step two for each of those areas might be in the sales area. Identify with Current processes are, are the activities that you do around that right where the pain is actually occurring. All right, so that's, that's step two, step three, for each of those processes, identify which ones you're willing to make a change on. A

    • 13 min
    FIR 119: How To GET MORE TIME FOR YOUR MONEY !!

    FIR 119: How To GET MORE TIME FOR YOUR MONEY !!

    In this episode, we take a look at how to get more time for your money.

    So time, what a crazy concept right? Have you guys ever listened to Myron golden? If not, you should look him up. He's got a great, great segment on this right, which is, what's the relationship of time and money? Right? We've all heard the statement. Time is money, but my run really throw some rocks at that right? And then he convinces Yeah, you know what? It's actually time is more valuable than money. And that's how I feel about it as well, it is more valuable than money. So what is the value of it? What's the value of your time? If you looked at 2500 hours working hours per year, and let's say you made $12,316 per year, then your time is worth $4.93 an hour? like wow, how'd you come up with that? At one point that was the poverty line in the United States? So $4.93 an hour is what your time is worth.
    So that today that's actually worth or excuse me, that's actually below the poverty line. So the question is, what is your time worth? I have a brother speaking very personally, here I have a brother who has ALS. And it's been disabling him over the last few years for him. And for me, time is the most precious commodity that we have. And it's even become more more more pronounced since this has come about. So when life hands you a situation like that it innately changes the value of time as it has for us, for him especially. But for all of us involved. Now, you know, a second is still a second, right and a minute, still a minute. From that perspective, nothing's changed, right? Time still clicks on from that perspective continuously. But what has changed is the value the intrinsic value that that we associate with that second, or with that minute. Now associated with this is the perception of how fast time goes by all right. And we've all heard of studies like this, there was there was a study of the fluidity of time.
    And scientists were looking at how to figure out our emotions, affecting our perception of time value, and how fast time goes. And, and, you know, we've all experienced this, right? When we're doing something that we think is fun, or we think it's a high value activity to us. Time tends to go more quickly. That's our perception anyway, right? And then when we're bored, then the you know, the perception is that time seems to drag. And we've all experienced that phenomenon. But the scientists were looking to sort of prove that. So they did some experiments. And in one experiment, the researchers took some train participants, and they took him to tell the difference between pictures and pictures that were shown for a short period of time or a long period of time. And the participants then viewed the pictures, some that were neutral, right? Or some that were positive, or some that were maybe not as exciting, right, so they had these different ranges like somewhere flowers, somewhere delicious desserts, right somewhere, geometric shapes, I guess if you're a mathematician, though, that might be pretty exciting.
    So for each picture, though, they had to indicate whether the picture had been displayed for short or a long period of time. And just as the researchers had thought that participants perceive the enticing pictures of the desserts, as having been displayed for a shorter amount of time, regardless of the actual duration. Then compared to other geometric shapes that were shown or even some pleasing pictures of flowers. So in general, the peoples that ate the dessert pictures weren't shown As long as some of the others fascinating, right, they also found that that the perceived amount of time for the enticing pictures was also related to when the participants had eaten that day. So they found out that someone had eaten recently, then then those people actually felt like these desert pictures were displayed for a longer period of time. So some of it gets quite situational, right? In terms of what what have we already been satisfied, righ

    • 11 min
    FIR 118: I DON'T HAVE THE TIME To Do ONE MORE THING !!

    FIR 118: I DON'T HAVE THE TIME To Do ONE MORE THING !!

    In this episode, we look at why I don't have the time and you don't have the time to do one more thing.

    Hey, everybody, welcome to another episode of ClickAI Radio. All right, who's got the time? You know, as I work across a lot of different companies, that is one of the common themes right from company to company. It's everyone's slammed everyone's busy, who has got the time to do one more thing, you constantly are struggling, each of us are with a I don't have the time or the energy or the resources to get things done. And the stuff that really matters. I would even add that that applies to this whole AI business. Right? Which is okay, fine. I got some AI insights, Holy smokes, don't have the time to actually do this. You know, think back to the last time you implemented something in your business, and it took longer than what you expected. That is a recurring theme across tons of projects, tons of companies. So how on earth?
    Could it be any different with AI? You know, I've, I've always liked Ted, you know, Ted.com, I just love the format of they figured out sort of this formula of Hey, if you, if you do it in less than a 20 minute conversation, we seem to have time to watch one of those right or to listen to something that someone's prepared. That actually takes more work, doesn't it to actually get it small enough, in fact, wasn't a Mark Twain that said, Hey, I would have written a shorter letter, but that would have taken more time. So it actually takes more time to produce things in a more succinct way. So the question is, what are the things that we do take time for? I've come up with a moniker that I use to help me describe that I call it click time, a click time is seven minutes, right?
    So I look at things in terms of click time units, am I willing to invest seven minutes of my time into something? And so as we've seen and applied AI to multiple organizations, we'll take a look at how many click times did it require of their time? And how many click times did it require for them to be able to then make a decision? You know, each of us wants to know what needs to be done, but in simple steps, and then you want to be able to get the guidance in a short time, and then move on with it. I was fascinated with this when I started to look at how much time did it take for us as humans to get through a drive through a drive thru restaurant right for fast food. So I started looking for some stats on that. And I found something interesting. This is from 2018 research.
    There's some a little bit newer, but for whatever reason, I grabbed the 2018. One, our Here we go. So this is the amount of time that we're willing to invest. So right we make the argument, I don't have time, and yet we still spend our time on things. In what chunks do we do that? Well, this is in this is in descending order. In other words, the first one that I read off to you is the one that takes the longest. All right. Now what this means though, is that just because it takes the longest, right? It doesn't really mean that it's the worst drive thru, or could it also be a function of, hey, there's a lot of people that want to go there. It's probably something between the two of those, right? So for example, the one with the longest wait time in 2018. Now for the drive thru was McDonald's. It came in at four minutes and 33 seconds. That was the average. All right, so if you want those chicken nuggets or for me, it's the Egg McMuffin. All right, you're gonna wait four minutes and 33 seconds. That's less than a click time. All right, the next one is chick fil a four minutes and 21 seconds. And then we've got Carl's Jr. Four minutes and 13 seconds. And again, these are average wait times. party's four minutes and 16 seconds.
    And then we drop we break the four minute barrier just like you know we did that with running the mile, right? We Break the four minute barrier, we've got Arby's, and Taco Bell come in about the same three minutes and 58 seconds. Wendy

    • 10 min

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