We have used a tagline from time to time. Strength in numbers.

I was reminded of that this past week as participants in our private beta started reporting the ways they are using Lumenous. You can take a tour of the application they are using here.

The most common is exactly what we expected. Their businesses have bank loans and the bank requires periodic financial reports. Other uses include providing an overview of the company to an auditor and using the profile sharing mechanism to cover routine reports to the board of directors so the in-person meetings can focus on strategic matters.

Another business user reports treating the company’s credit profile as a business plan to share and update with the management team. I loved that idea. I remember laboring over my first company’s business plan thinking that of course I’d use it as the guideline for my team. Granted this was before Google docs and the ability to collaborate on the file but even with such a tool, I suspect it would have faced a similar fate. Quickly out of date and mostly forgotten.

I can imagine the team working with the business profile as a visualized representation of their plan. Instead of spreadsheets, they’d all be looking at the same metrics using comments to discuss performance and plans.

This is my favorite part of private beta. I can hardly wait to hear more as these online conversations take off, especially as questions are answered and insights gained. If you are a participant, I hope you’ll let us know your own experiences.