A warm welcome to my datenlage.blog! For the eagerly curious amongst you: Datenlage is German (so am I).  It’s pronounced [dah:ten:lah:geh] and means “data situation” or “data management”.

My name’s Britta Bettendorf and I’m currently a data science student attending Flatiron School, where I’m expected to graduate in March 2019.

Well, why am I studying data science?

In a nutshell, data science is a perfect match for my temperament, my talents and my interests. Let me explain why and introduce myself.

As someone who likes to stick to the facts and is quite hardheaded by nature, data science is a perfect fit. Data is neat, data is true, data doesn’t pretend to be anything else – obviously, as long as the data scientist approaches the data in a neat, true and candid way.

For example, I also have a great interest in politics and history, and get sick of watching politicians arguing illogically or not breaking down a problem thoroughly to the citizens. I consider myself to be a logical, analytical problem solver – why can’t everyone be one? Why can’t everyone be all eyes and ears when judging something? Well, at least data can be relied on!

Finally, data science not only fits my attitude and talents, but also properly feeds my interests. What other field can provide so much satisfaction for a deep intellectual curiosity like mine? What other field lets you understand and comprehend a new business domain so thoroughly? Allows you to merely listen and carefully watch patterns arising? Data science is very cool for people with a never-ending thirst for knowledge.

Connecting all the dots and looking backward, it seems like it all pointed to today.

I studied psychology, and unlike most of my fellow students, I really enjoyed all the statistics and social psychology. Seeing how people group dynamics influence them to behave and talk differently terrified and intrigued me all at once. I thought to myself: better stick to the facts! And better to do what you think is right, rather than be influenced by groups.

Later on I moved on to qualitative market research, where I experienced how thrilling it is to identify patterns in human behavior. In the media business that followed, I learned about not only the beauty, but also the strength of numbers. Really, they can be used as weapons! Remember Al Capone and his slightly changed quote by Fräulein Bettendorf (aka: me):
„You can get much farther with a kind word and some proven data than you can with a kind word alone.“

Lastly, I run a hotel which taught me that … well, that I’m not the greatest hostess on earth, really. However, it did teach me how to run a business with data-driven decisions, but most importantly, that it’s not at all big deal to start a completely new career at any point in time. I came from psychology and market research knowing nothing about the hospitality industry, but nothing is as difficult as it looks – I learned so much along the way and have been successful. It follows that I’m quite optimistic about transitioning into a career in data science, as I am passionate about it and it is truly the perfect fit for me.

Here I am, that’s me, and that’s how I finally ended up in data science where I seem to have found a new home.

Britta Bettendorf