Forbes Technology Council members are in a wide range of industries and come from a diverse set of experiences. However, they all have lots of great insights to share, from best practices for technology departments to smart predictions for the future of tech. To showcase their expertise, we’re profiling Forbes Technology Council members here on the blog. This week: Ben Lee.
What is your background, and how has it influenced what you do today?
I’ve been a technologist for as long as I could remember. I first started helping my father’s battery brick and mortar store by creating HTML landing pages before I was 13.
Suffice to say, I caught the entrepreneurial bug very young. I did everything from bus tables to throw crazy parties in high school that grossed over $20,000 per event. By the time I was 18, I was running two restaurants and one nightclub for one of the more prominent groups in town.
By 22, I had made my first million with Neon Roots and successfully scaled the business to over 35 team members across the globe. Neon Roots has shipped multiple products this year, earning us a No. 1 spot on Product Hunt and other accolades such as inclusion on the Inc 5000 list.
What do you think is the most interesting piece of new technology today? (And / or how do you see the technology landscape changing in the next 5 – 10 years?)
Without a doubt, machine learning (AI) is the most fascinating technology to me. With one Python script, we can analyze so much more data now than we ever could before. With big data, companies have been tracking data for a while but don’t truly understand how to parse it or analyze it effectively (i.e. just capturing the meta data).
With machine learning, this technology is becoming more accessible to the everyday entrpreneur. You don’t need to be a mad scientist to work with ML.
What’s your best piece of advice for technology executives to keep on top of the rapidly evolving tech space?
Understanding how to calculate ROI. Most executives don’t even know how much they should be spending as a business on software development.