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New in CoachAccountable: Export Your Data

On Friday morning I had a call with an organization considering CoachAccoutable to be the platform for one of its new programs.  During the interview about the system and its capabilities, I was hit with a question I knew would come sooner than later from a more enterprise outfit: “Is there a way to export our data?”

My interviewer went on to elaborate concerns that I found completely understandable and might’ve anticipated: the data of their coaching over the span of a year amounts to so much of their client relationships, and to lose it would be catastrophic to the trust and integrity of those relationships.  “It wouldn’t even have to be readable: something that our admins could run as a weekly backup and have in case anything happened to CoachAccountable’s copy, something we could re-import if ever necessary and be back in business.”

It’s usually my job to say no to feature requests, and only give an eventual yes to the ones that come up for a lot of users (otherwise the system quickly becomes a bloated mess that no one likes).  But in this instance, the peace of mind factor alone really makes the case.

It turns out that a big button for a coach to press to export all of their client data has been on my radar for a while now, something I knew I’d be doing but amid many other fronts it hadn’t yet made the top of my priorities.  I’m a big believer that your data is yours: you should be able to do whatever you want with it and I’ll be darned if any system I create will get in your way.  Moreover, holding customer data hostage an attempt to keep customers tethered to your platform is a nasty practice, and suggests, in my opinion, a weak and insecure way of doing business.

So on Friday the push to prioritize data export came: the time was right to build that big button, stand by my principles on the matter of letting data be free, and let the organization I was talking to know that I took their concern seriously.

Just a click and a download of your data is seconds away.

This is what I love about being a one-man development team: I can get things done really fast and nimbly re-prioritize to handle what’s important in a given moment.  By early Friday evening the export was all done and ready to deploy.  I had wanted so much to email my prospective customer and let them know the feature they thought was important was ready to go and that I wasn’t just making false sales promises when I said “Yeah, that should take about an afternoon to build and I’ll probably get that in in the coming week.”

But alas, the internet connection here at Hacienda Merida, on Lake Ometepe in Lake Nicaragua went down.  I know, it’s an excuse that sounds like “my dog ate my homework”, but them’s the breaks: occupational hazard while traveling.

So here on Sunday I’m releasing this feature.  I’m happy to say that no one ever need feel that the vital data and documentation of their coaching relationships is in any way inaccessible.  Your data is yours.


  1. Dr John Kenworthy said,

    September 30, 2012 @ 9:57 pm

    That was easy to export John.
    And as for the Internet issues in your Hacienda… if you will stay in gorgeous places…

  2. John said,

    October 18, 2012 @ 10:57 am

    Thanks! Yes, super simple was the goal. And indeed, internet access issues is one of the hazards of travel. :)

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