Phil Simon

Award-winning author.

Speaker. Advisor.

Rent my brain

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I find the signal in the noise.

Phil Simon is…

A frequent keynote speaker and recognized technology authority An award-winning author of seven management books that don’t suck An advisor to organizations and individuals on strategy, management, platforms, communication, Big Data, and technology A freelance writer for hire and unabashed fan of the Oxford comma A contributor to Harvard Business Review, CNN, Wired, NBC, CNBC, Inc., BusinessWeek, HuffPo, InformationWeek, Quartz, The New York Times, and other prominent media outlets


Message Not Received

Why Business Communication Is Broken and How to Fix It

A great deal of business communication just doesn’t work and hasn’t for a long time. My seventh book examines a pernicious combination: our over-reliance upon one tool (e-mail), as well as our use—and often misuse—of language. It’s high time to examine not only what we say at work, but how we say it.

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The Visual Organization

Data Visualization, Big Data, and the Quest for Better Decisions

Progressive organizations like eBay, Netflix, and the University of Texas have moved well beyond simple spreadsheets, dashboards, and KPIs. They are using interactive dataviz tools and Big Data to ask better questions and make business decisions. My sixth book explores how.

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Too Big to Ignore

The Business Case for Big Data

My fifth book looks at the nascent trend of Big Data and explains why it’s such a big deal. In plain English, I describe its genesis, current applications, drawbacks (read: privacy and security), and future. I detail a wide variety of ways in which intelligent organizations are using it today. It’s a jargon-free, very accessible text with more than 40 positive reviews on Amazon.

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The Age of the Platform

How Amazon, Apple, Facebook, and Google Have Redefined Business

My award-winning fourth book examines the most important business model in business today: the platform. I focus on how four companies have embraced platforms, planks, ecosystems, SDKs, APIs, and external development–and how they have achieved amazing results.

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The New Small

How a New Breed of Small Businesses Is Harnessing the Power of Emerging Technologies

Up until relatively recently, only large companies could afford state-of-the-art tech. Not any more. Increasingly tech-savvy small businesses can do things that were simply impossible even five years ago. Through the course of eleven case studies, my third book demonstrates that small is indeed the new big.

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The Next Wave of Technologies

Opportunities in Chaos

Organizations are finally getting with the times. They are starting to move beyond simple e-mail, back-office systems, and BI. Many are adopting open-source software, SaaS, mobile technologies, cloud computing, and emerging enterprise technologies. Lamentably, most are still struggling with Enterprise 2.0, and my second book serves as a much-needed primer.

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Why New Systems Fail

An Insider’s Guide to Successful IT Projects

More than 60 percent of IT projects break bad. The obvious question is why. Culled from the decade I spent implementing new enterprise systems, my first book serves as a no-holds-barred guide on improving this dismal statistic. Via extensive case studies, I offer a great deal of advice on how minimize the chance of system failures.

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The ability to express an idea is well nigh as important as the idea itself.

—Bernard Baruch


I speak to organizations of all types and sizes about communicationsBig Data, platforms, technology, management, and communication. Some events are public; the rest are private. Recent talks have included Cisco SystemsZappos, NetflixAutodesk, Carnegie Mellon, and Harvard Business School. Watch one of my featured talks on the right or go nuts on my speaking archive page.

“Phil is an engaging speaker with the rare ability to make what may seem dry and complex topics both compelling and entertaining.”
—Joris Evers, Netflix VP, Head of Communications for Europe

Today the costs of inaction almost always exceed the costs of action.


For nearly two decades, I have worked with individuals and organizations in a wide variety of industries and capacities. At a high level, I do two things today. First, I advise organizations on how to understand and use technology and data better. Second, I help my clients communicate better, whether it’s internally, externally, or both.

Book Coaching

I help authors clarify and crystallize their ideas into high-quality non-fiction books.


I help individuals and companies navigate an increasingly complex business world.


Personalized content from a recognized technology and management authority.


Customized, intimate, on-site seminars designed for maximum impact.


Timely, jargon-free observations, analysis, and predictions in both short and long formats.

There is no such thing as a 'conversation' over e-mail.


I write about Big Dataplatforms, management, communication, trends, and technology. I have an aversion to jargon and an affinity for Breaking Bad and Rush references. Over the last six years, I’ve penned thousands of posts, more than 900 of which live on this site.

Featured Posts

We need to start getting comfortable with being uncomfortable.