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‘The Hacker Way’: Can eDiscovery Learn from Zuckerberg’s Letter to Investors?

Remember ‘The Hacker Way’?  No, I don’t blame you if you don’t as it was voiced by Mark Zuckerberg way back in early 2012.  That said, his infamous letter to investors is still being referred to by many today, just not by the people that need to know about it… the CEOs.  Regrettably, the eDiscovery industry is amongst that group.  Most CEOs have little knowledge about the fast-paced, every-changing diverse marketplace in front of them and, as such, are unable to manage change, struggle to adapt, and find they are lacking when it comes to responding quickly.

Take the software market; if companies within this industry didn’t understand how important change is, and the need for quick action, their offerings will not remain relevant, they won’t be able to attract the best in today’s talent, and they won’t be able to research and develop new high-tech products.  So, are providers of software to the legal industry going to catch up at some point and be a part of the 21st century?

Zuckerberg’s ‘The Hacker Way’ was developed as a building block to creating a strong company; to ‘cultivate a unique culture and management approach’ to business.  It involves continuous improvement, a belief that it can be better, and it is never complete.  The aim is to build the best services long term by releasing and learning from small building blocks, repetitions, not aiming to get everything right at the same time.  A ‘Hacker’ culture is open, inviting and hands-on; where the idea wins the argument rather than the person, and Zuckerberg developed 5 core values for running Facebook:

1.    Focus on impact
2.    Move fast.
3.    Be bold.
4.    Be open.
5.    Build social value.

eDiscovery experts, Maura Grossman and Gordon Cormack, have been saying that there is a significant shift in review software, i.e. predictive coding, and have been advocating CEOs to stand up, take notice and act!  Be bold, be decisive, act quickly, create impact, develop an open culture, and drive true value.

If you’re involved in legal search and review, time to take stock; predictive coding software is not something that can, or should, be bought off the shelf, or bought based on price and brand; some solutions are better than others, some are more suited to your business than others, some just aren’t worth the box it comes in… Not only that, there is yet to be anyone in the software industry that can provide in-depth, informative, effective training in how to use these new tools.  Predictive coding is completely new to the marketplace and everyone wants a piece of the pie; but if you’re going to offer the technology, you need to tag on the training.  Only when you use such ‘breakthrough’ technology correctly can you understand just how good it is, and put that to good effect!

Before you buy, learn about the technology, the method, how and why it works, then do your homework; not all offerings are the same.  At the same time, embrace ‘The Hacker Way’ to build a better, stronger business.

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