Friday, March 27, 2015

Starting Big Data and Analytics Project & Tips to Realize the Value

Hi guys. This article is about the reason for starting analytics project, steps or milestone in analytics project management and operational things after the project it self. Some of my customer has analytics in their IT roadmap and then ask me where to start. Some come from the need from business user itself, and the other come when I introduce this solution. Basically when they asked me about that, my first question is : how is the current reporting system? If the current reporting system is complicated, has a long lead time processing, involve many users, then it will be a challenging project. Many of my customer already have good reporting tools even though it is not integrated. That's all right, it means that they are not have any data mart or data warehouse.

We need to know how valuable the data for our customer. Every company should concern about their data since data is a precious asset to help executive make the decision. Make sure that you working with people who understand and appreciate about the data. When their data is not ready, don't be pessimistic about the opportunity. Start with the data they have or start with small department and choose agile methodology while they prepare about the other remaining data.

After we have finished with small pilot project, we should evaluate the result and make some improvement before we start the next project. It should be done parallely because it will take some time until the business user use and feel the result. A successful project will be a strong reference to sell the BI to another department / business user. 

Last, below is an interesting article about tips to realize value from big data and analytics from IBM. If you wanna start the analytics project, I recommend you to read my previous article about hiring business intelligence / analytics consultant. Thank you for reading.

Ten Tips to Realize Value from Big Data and Analytics - From IBM

What does it really take to derive value from Big Data and Analytics? Co-authors of Analytics Across the Enterprise: How IBM Realizes Business Value from Big Data and Analytics, Brenda Dietrich, Emily Plachy and Maureen Norton, identify 10 top tips based on their years of experience at IBM “eating their own cooking.” Interviews with more than 70 executives, managers and analytic practitioners across IBM yielded 31 case studies across 9 different business functions which show the breadth challenges, outcomes, analytics techniques, and lessons learned to make your analytics journey to realize business value successful.

 1. Create a strong culture for the availability and use of data

A strong analytics culture is foundational for getting the most out of big data and analytics. How can you create this culture? Let’s take an example. Think of yourself as the Vice President of Sales for a company. You have called several of your sales managers together to discuss the coming quarter and expected shortfall in revenue. You ask for input on how to optimize the available resources to drive better results. The sales managers start sharing ideas including reassigning resources and new accounts to go after. You respond, “What data do you have to support that? Is this gut-feel supported by facts?” If you are at IBM you would ask the sales manager, “Have you followed the recommendations in the Coverage Optimization for Profitability analytics model?” This example illustrates that encouraging employees to use data to support their assertions can get the whole team thinking about data-driven decision making. Changing culture is never easy – expecting decisions to be fact-based is a good start.

2. Build a team with the right skills

Solving a business challenge using big data and analytics requires a collaborative and multi-disciplined team. A person with expertise in the business is essential. Skill in the business processes is particularly valuable. Also key is an IT person with data expertise in the business. Finally, you need an experienced data scientist or analytics practitioner to understand and prepare the data and to develop and evaluate the analytics model.

3. Estimate the ROI for your project

The Return on Investment (ROI) of an analytics project can be estimated through a disciplined methodology that identifies key value drivers for the business area and assesses costs (for example, estimates of time, talent, software costs, training costs, Subject Matter Expert (SME) time). Value driver trees are an effective way to determine the benefits the project can drive. Identify the key value drivers for the process and quantify the impact that an improvement in that process could drive. Existing research and SME input can guide the value tree development and quantification of both hard and soft benefits. Once you understand those value levers you can estimate the expected return. It is important not to underestimate the training costs of getting people to use the analytics within the business process. Change is hard and some end users will require more knowledge of the tool than others.

4. Start with the data you have

Waiting for perfect data can take time, causing you to miss an opportunity for action. Use analytics techniques that can fill in gaps in imperfect data so that business value can be realized. Think about the jigsaw puzzle analogy that IBM Fellow Jeff Jonas uses to illustrate this point. Each piece of the puzzle represents a transaction or data. As you put more of the puzzle pieces together it becomes easier to complete the puzzle; in fact the last piece of is the easiest to put in. Even without the last few pieces of the puzzle you are likely to have enough context to infer what the missing pieces would be like. Analytics can be used to fill in those gaps like the last few pieces of the puzzle so that business value can be derived sooner.

5. Deliver results iteratively

Rather than planning to develop a large analytics solution in several years, with one delivery at the end, put a stake in the ground to drive progress and get results. Iterative development of analytics solutions has several advantages. First, it allows you to obtain feedback from your stakeholders and target user group early. This feedback may cause you to have to make adjustments, which are much easier to make early than later. As soon as you have a working prototype, you can use it to create buy-in from your target users. Second, developing iteratively decreases the time to value.

6. Engage target users early

Deploying a new analytics solution widely is key to increasing the amount of value realized by an enterprise. Every target user who fails to use the analytics solution reduces the value realized. One of the best ways to help your target users buy into your new solution is to expose them to an early prototype both to allow them to see what the prototype can do and to get their feedback. Fortunately, those following tip 5 will have an early prototype. By way of example, a team developing a new quality detection solution needed a way show why yet another quality detection solution was needed. They asked target users to provide historical data containing their gnarliest problems so that this data could be fed into the prototype. The prototype team was not told what the problem was. The prototype identified some of these historical problems 6 weeks earlier than the tradition quality detection solution did. These results caused the target users to look forward to the new solution.

7. Use proven analytics solutions even if you do not understand the underlying analytics technology

Analytics is a broad field encompassing a range of techniques for extracting insight from data. Many of the techniques have been verified both through rigorous mathematical methods and through extensive evaluation and have been made available for use as robust software packages or services. Understanding when and how to use the methods is essential; understanding exactly how the methods work is not. Just as most users of digital technology, ranging from cameras to music players to cell phone, don’t understand the details of how sound or light is converted into bits to be stored or transmitted, and then converted back to sound or pixels to be enjoyed, it is not necessary for users of analytic methods to understand how the analytic algorithms process numerical data to find correlations or patterns, or explore a set of possible solutions to pick the best one. It is, however, important to understand when the use of a method is appropriate and how to interpret the output of the method. As in any technical field, in analytics there will be a small number of people who create new methods and a larger group of people who create new applications of methods (both old and new), and a very large group of people who use the applications to create enterprise or personal value.

8. Take action from insight to realize value

Analytics is often described as the process of extracting insight from data. While insight is far better than hindsight or no-sight, insight alone does not create value for an enterprise. It is insight, coupled with actions inspired or influenced by that insight, which can create value. Of particular value is insight that allows you to understand the likely result of specific actions. Then you can select from among possible actions the one most likely to produce the desired result. Further, using advanced analytic methods such as mathematical optimization, you can use this type of insight to understand and evaluate complex multi-part decisions, such as the allocation of scarce resources among activities. Finally, it is important to consider the action(s) taken, the expected result, and the actual result as additional data. This data should be further analyzed to gain additional insight that can be used to influence future decisions. This final step makes analytics an adaptive and learning process, which can continually improve outcomes.

9. Measure to gauge success

The primary reason for running a big data and analytics project is to achieve a business outcome. In order to know if a business outcome was achieved, the outcome must be measured. As an example, a proactive retention project used predictive analytics to identify high-value employees with a propensity to leave the company. Human Resources (HR) knew the attrition rate of high-value employees in the previous year. After predicting which high-value employees were likely to leave, HR increased salaries or paid retention bonuses. Attrition of high-value employees for the current year decreased. Measurements allow you to evaluate progress and decide if the outcome is acceptable or if additional measures should be taken to improve the outcome.

10. Share big data and analytics assets across business units to drive additional value

In addition to being used to support individual decision processes, analytics can be used to facilitate collaboration and learning within an enterprise. The simple act of agreeing on the source and meaning of data can bring together process teams from different organizations within an enterprise. Discussion of how the different data elements are used, whether for measurement and reporting or for decision making, can lead to greater understanding of the overall drivers of enterprise performance. Further, identifying the various decisions that are made based on this data in the end-to-end execution of business can lead to both better alignment of unit measurements and the identification of opportunities for collaboration. In the transformation of IBM’s supply chain, analytics revealed opportunities to share both physical and information resources between units to better serve customers. It also enabled collaborative decision making between IBM and its distributors.

Source : IBM Press Books

Thursday, March 26, 2015

BI Consultation and 7 Questions to Ask Before Hiring a BI Consultant

Hi guys. It's been 3 years since I work as Analytics / BI Consultant. From projects and opportunities I have been through, I find many facts and interesting ideas about the BI consultant. All of the customer / prospects always ask about the product first. How the product capabilities can fulfill their needs. Some customer who had conducted some research about this, may come up with other questions like template or industry solution. 

Next, they will ask about our capability and experience as vendor or partner. How long we have been selling this product. Who are the project references? This question will followed with the full solution instead of only the BI product. Fyi, in BI Solution mostly we need to understand about the Data Warehouse and ETL solution too. So, the customer would like to ask about the whole package solution. Some of the customer will also ask about the technical, such as project management and detail phases. Some will ask about the ability to connect to their existing system or environment.

Last, they would like to know about the price. Is the price match the owner estimation or not. This will become a problem when they ask for the whole package solution, because every solution has their own product. To complete this post, I found an interesting article related with my story above. There are 7 questions that related. Please read the full article below. Thank you.

7 Questions to Ask Before Hiring a BI Consultant - By TDWI (John Remby)

For companies implementing business intelligence (BI) solutions, just as important as what technology they buy is who will implement that technology. Choosing the wrong BI consultant for your project can lead to disastrous results.

When you are evaluating consultants, ask the following seven questions to make sure your consultant meets your needs.

#1: How long have you been working with the software?

Experience counts. Software in general is often easy to learn but hard to master. The more familiar and proficient your consultant is with the BI tool, the better the economies of scale. An experienced consultant will be more productive, offer faster turnaround on issues, and provide more value. A master of the software will have dealt with any complex problem you have and will likely be able to come up with creative solutions.

#2: How long have you been working in my industry?

Knowing the software is essential, but just as invaluable is knowing your industry. Data is data, and the mechanisms and methodologies for analysis don't really change from industry to industry, but the nature of your business does. What you do with the data and how you analyze it likely varies greatly. A consultant who has spent a great deal of time in your industry is going to be more familiar with what you likely want to measure and can offer suggestions based on what he or she has seen or done for others.

#3: Are you familiar with my source system(s)?

If you already have dedicated resources to generate feeds from your source system(s), then this question may be unnecessary. However, if you expect your consultant to also pull the data from your source system(s), expertise here will be instrumental. Understanding the schema well enough to know where to go for the necessary data elements is extremely valuable.

Just knowing the way around different data structures will save time. A relational database varies greatly from a hierarchical database. The more internal knowledge of your own systems you have, the more this becomes nice to have rather than a must have. At minimum, your consultant should be able to navigate through your system. That said, it’s always helpful to provide a reference person to answer your consultant’s questions.

#4: At the end of the consulting engagement, what's the plan for transition?
If you intend to take over your BI project after the consulting project is complete, ask this question upfront because you will need to budget for both time and training. The consultant’s answer may also determine the scope of implementation. Consulting deliverables might be adjusted to include additional comments about any coding and include additional documentation to make the transition easier.

You also want to consider your transition options. Will there be a massive knowledge transfer at the project's end or will you work in tandem with the consultant as an observer and learn as the project develops? If the consultant is amenable to the latter methodology, this may be your best chance for a successful transition. It will likely take longer and drive up costs in the short term; however, these upfront costs will be worth it if it increases your chance of success.

#5: What do I do if/when you're unavailable?
If you have a software-related question, you should be able to contact your software vendor’s support line. However, for a more complex issue (such as troubleshooting a failure or a detailed question related to the specifics of your implementation), you’ll want to talk to your consultant. Here, consistency counts. Your consultant is familiar with your implementation and you feel comfortable with that person, so what happens when he or she is unavailable?

You need to know your service won't be interrupted, so make sure you have a backup plan. Redundancy on your project will ensure there is more than one consultant familiar with your implementation, thus ensuring consistent support.

#6: How successful are your past customers?
When it comes down to it, results speak louder than words. Ask for references. A consultant's job is not just to perform a series of implementation tasks -- it's to help improve your situation and, most important, to deliver business results. If a consultant is successful, he or she should have a multitude of satisfied customers and should be willing to share them with you.

#7: What do you need from me?
BI implementations succeed when both the customer and the vendor work together to achieve results. On the consultant’s end, it is a huge help to know the main point of contact for each data source. In bigger organizations with multiple data sources, there may be a point person for each data source system who will be the best person to talk to when there are questions about where to find the data and any special rules to be aware of within your organization.

In addition, it’s especially helpful to know who the business owners of the metrics are. Who in your organization has their success or failure measured on the basis of these metrics? These will be the primary users of the analytics and data visualizations we create, and as such, they should participate in the business rule definitions. They should be available for questions as well. On the whole, identifying your desired metrics, metric definitions, data sources, and the main contacts mentioned above is a huge help when starting the project.

Ask More Questions

These seven questions are by no means the only questions to ask when you embark on a BI project. However, they serve as a good foundation as you begin your selection process.

Original Source : John Remby, Consultant, Dimensional Insight

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Your Problems Make You Stronger Than Before

Seekor monyet sedang berada di pucuk pohon kelapa. Dia tidak sadar sedang di perhatikan oleh dua macam angin yaitu Angin PUYUH dan Angin TOPAN. 

Kedua angin itu sedang bertaruh siapa yang paling cepat dapat menjatuhkan si monyet dari pohon kelapa.

Akhirnya satu persatu, kedua angin itu maju. Angin PUYUH yang pertama memulai aksinya, Zzzyy.. dia meniup sekencang-kencangnya, Wuuusss… Merasa ada angin gede datang, si monyet langsung memegang batang pohon kelapa, Dia pegang sekuat-kuatnya. Beberapa menit lewatlah sudah, si monyet pun tidak terjatuh. Angin PUYUH pun menyerah. 

Giliran Angin TOPAN. Wuuusss… Wuuusss… Dia meniup sekencang-kencangnya. Tetapi monyet itu tidak terjatuh juga. Lebih kenceng lagi dia tiup. Wuuuss… Wuuuss… Wuuuss… Si monyet malah makin kenceng pegangannya. Nggak jatuh-jatuh.

Kedua angin gede itu akhirnya ngakuin, si monyet memang jagoan. Tangguh. Daya tahannya luar biasa. Tidak lama kemudian, datanglah angin SEPOI-SEPOI.

Keinginan angin SEPOI-SEPOI di tertawakan oleh dua angin lainnya. Dua angin besar aja tidak bisa menjatuhkan monyet tersebut, apalagi yang sekecil ini anginnya. Kedua angin itu meremehkan angin SEPOI-SEPOI yang hanya bisa bertiup pelan-pelan. 

Tanpa banyak bicara, angin SEPOI-SEPOI langsung niup ubun-ubun si monyet. Psssss… Enak banget. Adem… Seger… Riyep-riyep matanya si monyet. Tidak lama kemudian tertidurlah monyet itu dan melepas pegangannya. Akhirnya, monyet itu terjatuh ke tanah.

Melalui PERMASALAHAN, KESUSAHAN, PENDERITAAN bahkan MALAPETAKA yang kita lalui, kita menjadi kuat bahkan lebih kuat dari sebelumnya... 
Namun jika hanya dengan KENIKMATAN... KESENANGAN... KELIMPAHAN... Disinilah kejatuhan itu terjadi.

So, jangan sampai kita merasa NIKMAT... SENANG... LIMPAH... karena orang lain yang menghadapi dan melaluinya.
Karena sesungguhnya kekuatan itu ada pada orang lain itu.

Hadapi dan lalui PERMASALAHAN, KESUSAHAN, PENDERITAAN bahkan orang lain bilang  MALAPETAKA sekalipun !!! 
Jadilah kuat dan pemenang atas PERMASALAHAN, KESUSAHAN, PENDERITAAN bahkan MALAPETAKA Anda.

"Your victories don't make you stronger - But overcoming your problems do!"

(Chinese Proverb)

Sumber : Agus Gunawan (Chief HCM - PT AGIT - Via Email Blast 27 Februari 2015)

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Spirit of Giving

Seorang anak kecil menarik-narik sang pedagang balon dan bertanya :

  • Anak : "Pak, apakah balon kuning kalau dilepas akan terbang juga?"
  • Pedagang : "Bukan warna balon ini yang menentukan apakah balon ini dapat terbang atau tidak, tapi apa yang ada di dalamnya."
  • Anak pun tersenyum, lalu ...
  • Pedagang : "dan yang paling penting adalah balon itu tidak dapat terbang, walaupun apa yang ada di dalamnya bisa membuat terbang jika si empunya balon tidak mau melepaskan balon itu."

Cerita diatas mengingat kita semua, tidaklah berguna manusia penuh dengan sarat kepandaian / pengetahuan, jika semuanya tidak dipraktekan di dalam hidup kita. Ayo kita berbagi kepandaian atau pengetahuan dan segala potensi diri kita kepada sesama, dan jadikan hidup penuh makna.

“Hanya sesuatu yang Anda milikilah yang dapat Anda berikan kepada orang lain”
(Firman Pratama)

Sumber : Agus Gunawan (Chief HCM - PT AGIT - Via Email Blast 13 Februari 2015)

Monday, March 23, 2015

Penjelasan Mengenai CPU dan Core

Mungkin anda mendengar istilah tersebut dari sebuah CPU (Central Processing Unit). Saat ini, CPU sudah sangat canggih dan tidak seperti dulu lagi. Dulu, CPU hanya memiliki satu core. Sekarang, ada yang mencapai dual core, quad core, bahkan octo core. Jika anda belum mengerti yang saya katakan, tenang saja. Di artikel ini, kita akan membahas sama-sama apa aja istilah dalam dunia CPU.

Mempelajari CPU sangatlah penting, jika anda ingin membeli CPU baru. Jika anda ingin menghemat, mungkin anda memilih CPU yang memiliki core yang dikit atau anda lebih tertarik dengan performa. Jika iya, maka CPU dengan core yang banyak merupakan pilihan tepat. Dengan mengerti CPU dual core ataupun quad core, memilih sebuah CPU nantinya dapat lebih mudah. Mari kita mulai penjelasannya.

Apakah “Core” itu?
Setiap “core” pada CPU sebenarnya adalah sebuah CPU terpisah, dan merupakan bagian dari CPU itu sendiri yang bekerja saling berdampingan. Contohnya seperti ini, CPU dengan dual core sebenarnya bisa dikatakan sebagai 2 CPU. Jadinya, jika anda membeli CPU dengan dual core, maka sebenarnya anda telah membeli 2 CPU sekaligus dalam satu chip CPU.

Itu artinya, CPU dengan dual core akan 2 kali lebih cepat dibandingkan dengan yang single core. Misalnya jika anda memiliki komputer desktop dengan CPU single core dan anda mengupgradenya dengan dual core, anda akan merasakan komputer anda akan lebih cepat dari biasanya.

Fungsi dari core adalah agar tugas yang anda kerjakan di komputer anda dapat dibagi prosesnya pada tiap core. Misalnya, pada saat bersamaan anda sedang melakukan browsing internet dan membuat dokumen di Microsoft Word. Browsing internet akan dikerjakan oleh core pertama dan Microsoft Word akan dikerjakan pada core kedua. Tentu saja, ini berdampakk positif pada performa komputer. Bayangkan jika memiliki single core, maka kedua kegiatan tersebut akan dilakukan pada satu core saja.

Pada intinya, semakin banyak core yang dimiliki, kecepatan komputer anda akan lebih cepat. Semua proses yang dikerjakan di Windows, kerjanya akan dibagi-bagi pada tiap core. Jika anda pengguna Google Chrome, jika anda buka Task Manager, anda akan melihat bahwa proses Chrome sangatlah banyak menurut dari tab yang anda buka. Chrome melakukan tersebut agar proses pada tiap tab dapat dikerjakan oleh core lainnya, tidak hanya bergantung dengan satu core.

Apakah Clock Speed?
Clock speed adalah kecepatan dari CPU itu sendiri. Jika anda memiliki CPU dengan kecepatan 2.4 GHz, maka tiap core yang dimiliki berkecepatan 2.4 GHz. Seperti CPU yang saya miliki, yaitu Intel Core i5 M450, ia memiliki kecepatan 2.4 GHz pada masing-masing corenya.

Multi-threaded Core
Tergantung dari teknologi dari sebuah CPU, banyak CPU yang masih menggunakan single-threaded pada tiap core. Artinya adalah pada tiap-tiap core tersebut, tugas untuk mengkomputasikan proses tidak bisa dibagi. Artinya jika ada program yang memiliki satu proses, proses tersebut tidak bisa dibagi pada satu core.

Kenapa harus dibagi? Karena nantinya akan lebih cepat. Itu semua tergantung dari teknologi CPU itu sendiri dan apakah aplikasi itu mendukung multi-threaded. Jika aplikasi itu mendukung multi-threaded, maka proses yang ia miliki akan dibagi-bagi pada tiap core yang menghasilkan performa lebih cepat.

Jika CPU anda memiliki kecepatan 3.0 GHz pada dual core, itu tidak sama dengan 6.0 GHz jika digabungkan. Jadi, prosesor yang anda miliki tetap 3.0 GHz, bukan digabungkan. Jika ada aplikasi yang memiliki proses, maka proses tersebut akan berjalan pada core pertama dan core lainnya akan stand by menunggu proses lainnya muncul.

Perlu diperhatikan juga terhadap aplikasi yang mendukung lebih dari satu core. Jika anda menggunakan aplikasi yang hanya mendukung single core, maka jika dijalankan pada dual core, atau quad core, performanya akan sama saja di single core. Jika aplikasi itu mendukung lebih dari satu core, seperti browser Google Chrome, maka performa Google Chrome akan lebih cepat.

Istilah Banyaknya Core
Dibawah ini adalah istilah yang digunakan untuk menyebutkan banyaknya core:

  • Single Core: 1 Core
  • Dual Core: 2 Core
  • Quad Core: 4 Core
  • Hexa Core: 6 Core
  • Octo Core: 8 Core
  • Deca Core: 10 Core
  • dll

Melakukan Kontrol dan Monitoring pada Core 
Sebenarnya, anda bisa mengatur proses apa saja yang menggunakan core pada CPU anda dengan menggunakan Task Manager. Klik kanan pada proses dan klik “Set Affinity…”

Lalu, anda dapat mengatur berapa core yang dapat digunakan pada proses tersebut. Saya sarankan untuk tidak mengubah-ubahnya. Biarkan saja seperti itu. Saya beritahukan langkah ini hanya sebagai pengetahuan saja. Hal ini dapat berguna, jika anda sedang memainkan game komputer yang lama dan tidak mendukung multi-core. 

Dari task manager pada menu Performance, anda bisa melihat proses pada tiap corenya.

Teknologi Hyper-Threading Pada Prosesor Intel
Prosesor Intel memiliki teknologi “Hyper-Threading”. Dengan teknologi ini, setiap core pada CPU sama saja dengan 2 logical core. Jadinya, jika anda memiliki dual core CPU, itu sama saja dengan Quad Core CPU jika dipikirkan secara logic. Pada screenshot diatas, komputer yang saya miliki adalah Dual Core, namun karena memiliki teknologi “Hyper-Threading”, jadinya CPU saya ada 4 core.

Lalu, apakah performa Dual Core dengan Hyper-threading sama dengan Quad Core? Bisa dikatakan hampir sama, karena tiap core memiliki 2 bagian yang dapat membagi-bagi tugas pada tiap prosesnya.

Sumber Asli : Windowsku

Friday, March 20, 2015

Why Your Relationship And Life Decisions Are So Difficult and How To Make Them Easier

We’ve all been there. Stuck at the crossroads of an important decision and can’t seem to make a decision.  We have considered everything worth considering and yet there we are, standing at the intersection of LEFT and RIGHT. Stuck in the paralysis of analysis…not moving backwards but not moving forward either.

Should you take this apartment or that one? Take this job or that one? Date this person or that person? Eat at this restaurant or that one?

Decisions! Decisions! Decisions! Sure some simple decisions don’t require a spreadsheet but some are pretty important.

So why are some of our decisions so difficult? Why do we find ourselves in frustrating situations when we are making decisions about our lives and relationships?

Well, here are a few reasons I have encountered in my own life and have helped many people resolve in my coaching sessions. These are not all conclusive but understanding these, and making adjustments where appropriate, might just make all the difference when it comes to making decisions on your life’s journey.

A)  You start from POSSIBILITIES not from PURPOSE: 
This is one of the greatest and most popular mistakes that people make when it comes to making decisions. They start looking at the POSSIBILITIES before establishing the PURPOSE. Let’s look a bit more closely at that.

So say you are trying to decide on a vehicle to purchase and you start to brainstorm on the possibilities. You quickly become overwhelmed by the gazillion possibilities. SUV, Minivan, coupe, or 4 door sedan.  Japanese, German, or American? Hybrid or Regular? Blue, White, Green or Fuchsia? New, Used or Certified Preowned? That can get overwhelming very quickly.

What if you did it the other way round? What if BEFORE you started looking at the possibilities, you started by defining the purpose first?

What if you spend time to first establish the purpose that the car will serve? You establish the fact that that this is a vehicle that you will drive more than 15,000 highway miles a year, one that will double as a family car for your growing family when you are not on the business trips and one that can take all the equipment for each family member’s hobby.

THEN…at the point when you have established purpose, you lift your head/mind to look for possibilities and you’ll see that the decision is much easier.

Same thing with those “potential relationships”. Should I date this one or that one? Person A has attribute 1, 3, 6, 8 and 10 but person B has 1, 3, 4, 5, 7 and 9. You will confuse and frustrate yourself if you try to make decisions based on the possibilities in front of you without first establishing the purpose.

What if you stopped looking at the options for a second and thought deeply about the PURPOSE that relationship will (or is meant to) serve  in your life and you realize that attributes 1,3,7 and 9 are the most important for you to have…you would have just significantly reduced the difficulty of making that decision.

So : 
When it comes to decisions in your life, always start from purpose before you explore possibilities - Tobi Atte

Unless you can properly define the purpose behind a decision, you are not ready to make that decision.

B) You over rely on reviews (and don’t know how to read/utilize them): 

Reviews are great. I read reviews ALL the time but I know that they have their place. The problem arises when you over rely on reviews when trying to make a decision.

The problem with reviews is that you are relying on people’s experiences with someone/something/somewhere in a context that may not be the same context that YOU will be engaging in.

The problem is where you can’t make a decision until/unless it is a decision that the majority will make.
The problem is when you absolutely have to feel that people approve of that thing/place/person/decision

I recently wanted to buy a presentation clicker as I am constantly in front of an audience presenting but as I scanned the reviews, I came across a couple of unhappy customers. On the surface, I would have simply decided not to buy the clicker. Looking deeper in, I realized that they were using the clicker for purposes different from my intended use.

When you rely on reviews …reviews about things or people, be sure you don’t over rely on them and ensure that you are properly defining the context that you are looking to review in.

Like someone renting a car for a day and it didn’t drive well so they wrote a review about it and you swear never to buy that kind of car—Not the way to utilize a review.

Here are 4 quick things to remember when using reviews :

1) It is not always a deal breaker that some people express dissatisfaction with someone or something. WHY? Because people are more likely to express their dissatisfaction than their satisfaction anyway. Think about it. Think about the last time you had TERRIBLE service at a place of business or retailer. You were more likely to tell anyone that would listen, than when you had great service. We are more likely to share our negative experiences than our positive ones. So if your review has a few more bad ones than good ones, it may not necessarily be a deal breaker.

2) Look for consistency:  The most reliable reviews are those that give a recurring trend…you know…where there is mention of a recurring theme/trend/issue whether good or bad. Reviews that are all over the place are not as useful because they are one off situations where people may have had bad experiences and interpreted it in a certain way.

3) Remember to consider timelines:
Reviews that are old are almost useless. People, places, things, processes change…for the better or worse…but they can change. So that guy or girl that you knew in High School may be a completely different person today and that 2 year old review about that restaurant on B street is probably no longer accurate. Look for current reviews.

4) Remember to review the reviewer. Sure your best friend may the absolute best reviewer when it comes to shopping for handbags but is she the best for giving the last word about a potential man in your life? Sure your boy is great at giving financial reviews and advice but is he the best to talk to about raising kids?

It's great to get reviews from people we TRUST, but we must also seek to get it from people who are QUALIFIED - Tobi Atte

So sure…use reviews…”ask around” but make sure you are keeping reviews in its place. If you make it too important, you will be at the mercy of other people’s insatiable appetite.

C) You are thinking PERFECTION not IMPROVEMENT: 

It’s good to have great goals. Goals that challenge you and stretch you outside of your normal comfort zone for achievement….but there is a fine line. There is a point where a goal that we unconsciously perceive as “impossible” will cause us to not even attempt.

Same thing applies to decisions we are trying to make about things, purchases or choices. When you think perfection, it can make you extremely indecisive and immobile in your life. That’s not to say that we shouldn’t work towards or desire the very best for ourselves. It just means that:

Sometimes in life, making a good decision (instead of a perfect decision) is better than not making a decision at all.

Sometimes in life, making the best decision you can make now is better than not making a decision at all - Tobi Atte

So … eating in an “ok” (as opposed to eating at the absolute fanciest restaurant in your city) tonight might be better than not eating at all.

Here is the other VERY subtle thing about decision making. Ready?

Sometimes, people use the “desire to look for the best” as an excuse to not have to make a decision.

So it’s not that the decision is really hard, it’s just that they are afraid to make one so they would rather wait for an unreachable BEST rather than decide on the reachable GOOD in front of them.

That’s why people don’t start “good” things because they can’t get “perfect” right away. That’s why people won’t start that good business because it’s not world class yet. It’s the reason why people won’t be “friends” with someone because that person isn’t “marriage” material (More of that in “Don’t Prequalify your lead”).

So make a move. Sure sometimes you should wait it out Sure you should always weigh your decisons…but many times in life you have to make the absolute best decision that you can make with the information/resources in front of you and leave space to forgive yourself if things don’t turn out perfectly.

D) You are too terrified of failure …because you don’t know how to forgive yourself: 
I am going to invade your personal space on this one…but you’ll thank me for it later.

Most people I have coached on decision making all share this trait. They are so hard on themselves that they stay clear of tough decisions all together. When they make mistakes, they beat themselves up so hard that they never want to let themselves down ever again. One bad experience in that relationship/decision and they shut that part of themselves down.

Unfortunately, the more you do this, the weaker your self-confidence, the weaker you look to yourself and to others and the less capable you are of taking advantage of unique opportunities that come your way (that may be outside of your comfort zone). The more that happens, the more your life tends to stay the same…average. The more this happens, the more risk averse you become but life….the extraordinary life you admire and aspire to have, takes some level of risk to reach and achieve.

Failure can be devastating…I know. I have had my share of that…but I know the importance of maintaining the “desire to try again”. When you are so afraid of failure, when you can’t forgive yourself for making a mistake, your life clams up and that’s not good…because to live your best life, you must be OPEN.

So say it with me. “I forgive myself for making that mistake. I made the best decision I knew how to make at that time. I know better now but I am glad I was able to actually try. My failed attempt is not what makes me a failure. It’s my inability to get up and try again that does.” - Tobi Atte

That’s it! Hope this helps.

Original Source : Tobi Atte - I Just Met Me

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

The Power Is In Yourself

Setiap orang di dunia yang hobi bola pasti sudah tidak asing lagi dengan pemain berbakat terbaik dunia saat ini, dialah Lionel messi pemain mungil dengan kelincahan dan kecepatannya serta keakuratan tendangannya.

Namun tahukah Anda? Lionel Messi sewaktu kecil ternyata kekurangan hormon HGH atau hormon pertumbuhan. Dan diperkirakan tinggi tubuhnya hanya berkisar 140 cm saat dewasa. Beruntung, saat usia 13 tahun ia dikontrak Charles Rexach (pencari bakat Club sepakbola Barcelona) dan bersedia membiayai seluruh biaya terapi hormon pertumbuhan. Dan saat ini tinggi badan messi mencapai 169 cm, cukup tinggi untuk ukuran indonesia. Namun, termasuk masih mungil karena kebanyakan pemain bola tingginya 180 cm ke atas.

Bersama Messi Barcelona memenangkan banyak gelar diantaranya

  • Uefa champion league (liga champion) 2005–06, 2008–09, 2010–11
  • La liga 2004–05, 2005–06, 2008–09, 2009–10, 2010–11
  • Copa del rey 2008–09
  • Fifa club world cup 2009, 2011
  • Supercopa de EspaƱa 2005, 2006, 2009, 2010, 2011
  • UEFA super cup 2009, 2011; lebih detail : Wikipedia

Bagaimana ia dapat bermain begitu baik? 
Ia berkata, Pertama-tama Anda harus mencintai permainan.
Berapa banyak?
Yah dari usia tiga tahun saya bermain setiap hari: setiap pagi, sore dan malam hari.
Di dalam rumah, juga. Itu rahasianya.

Belajar dari Messi, ternyata kekuatan diri kita ada di dalam diri kita sendiri. Dengan mencintai apa yang kita kerjakan dan terus melatih diri dengan menyelesaikan setiap permasalahan yang ada, menjadikan kita semakin ber-kompetence.

The Power is in yourself!!!

Sumber : Agus Gunawan (Chief HCM - PT AGIT - Via Email Blast 6 Februari 2015)

Monday, March 16, 2015

It’s Not About Knowing, But About Doing

Ada pepatah kuno bagi mereka yang ingin mengapai cita-cita dalam hidup ini, yang berbunyi : "Keinginan adalah peta harta karun, Pengetahuan adalah peti harta karun, Kearifan adalah batu permata, Tanpa tindakan semuanya tetap terkubur di bawah lautan yang luas."

Dibutuhkan jembatan penghubung faktor internal dan eksternal kita yang tidak lain adalah tindakan-tindakan kita. Orang yang penuh dengan pengetahuan, namun tidak mengaplikasikan dalam hidupnya akan berakhir frustasi karena tidak dapat meraih cita-citanya.

Nathaniel Branden (USA Psikolog dan Penulis buku) mengingatkan "jika Anda tidak melakukan sesuatu, keadaan tidak akan berubah menjadi lebih baik".

Inilah saatnya untuk menerapkan pengetahuan Anda menjadi tindakan dan kebiasaan dalam hidup.

"It’s not about knowing, but about doing."

(William Durant – Founder of General Motors)

Sumber : Agus Gunawan (Chief HCM - PT AGIT - Via Email Blast 30 Januari 2015)

Sunday, March 15, 2015

AGIT Training 2015 - Recreating Valuable Services

Selamat malam. Saya mau berbagi pengalaman saya selama training 2 hari kemarin. Training ini murni disponsori oleh perusahaan dan saya merasa sangat beruntung bisa terpilih untuk mengikutinya. Tema trainingnya adalah "AGIT Re-Creating Valuable Services". Training ini dikemas menarik dalam bentuk inclass training + outbound yang diadakan tentunya bukan di kantor melainkan di Bumi Gumati Convention Resort & Hotel, Bogor dengan menggunakan jasa dari "kang Harri Firmansyah & Team dari Butterfly Act".

Disini saya tidak akan menceritakan tentang bagaimana perjalanannya, bagaimana hotel dan pelayanannya, melainkan inspirasi dan ilmu yang saya dapatkan selama training kemarin. Saya melihat di dinding ada banner yang menarik tentang service, berikut adalah beberapa isi banner tersebut :
  • Service is taking action to create value for someone else.
  • Service is transformation of attitude from command to creativity.
  • Service is commitment to taking action and creating values.
  • Service is curiosity to listen intently and appreciate others.
  • Service is transformation of behavior from compliance and control to concern and compassionate.
  • Service is gateway to fulfillment, satisfaction and delight.
  • Uplifting what you do for other people is the key to uplifting yourself.
Berikut adalah poin - poin training kemarin yang dibagi kepada 3 sesi :

Sesi 1 - Service
Quality of Service by Ron Kaufman

Ada 5 service level :
  1. Basic = sesuka hatinya asalkan tujuannya tercapai.
  2. Expected = sesuai SOP atau sudah seharusnya.
  3. Desired = diharapkan oleh customer.
  4. Surprising = wow, mengejutkan atau diluar ekspektasi
  5. Unbelievable = luar biasa, sepenuh hati, suprising dalam tahap konsisten.
Service is about how you response.
Response Ability (Our Choice) >>> Responsibility (Given)

Prinsip Pertama = service lahir dari mengenali personal value dan corporate value.
Prinsip Kedua = semakin baik memberikan service akan semakin baik pula dalam menerima amanah. Semakin baik menerima amanah maka perusahaan dan kita sendiri akan semakin naik.

Values drive Dreams + Motivation
Values = hot button (something that will drive you)
  • What we think
  • What we feel
  • What we act
Value >>> Culture
AGIT & AG Culture = VIPS

Notes about Leadership :
  • Our emotion is created by our motion.
  • Pembicara yang hebat selalu mengakhiri dengan mengajak.
  • Leadership is define reality and giving hope.
Sesi 2 - Service Design
Apa itu service & customer menurut anda? 
Siapa customer bagi anda? = Our next process is our customer.
Apa yang harus anda lakukan untuk mereka? = Excellent Services

The moments when people experience your service an form their opinions are called Perception Points (Ron Kaufman)

Perception Points can be external customer or internal colleagues

Service is delivered in a sequence.

Service Transaction in AGIT :
  1. Presales Activity (Design)
  2. Implementation (Delivery)
  3. Maintenance & Operation
  4. Optimization & Improvment
How to up your business perception points :
#1. Person
  • professionality
  • personality
  • dress code
  • eye contact
  • body language
  • voice tone
  • product knowledge
  • punctuality
  • flexibility
  • level of confidence
#2. Product
  • features
  • performance
  • design
  • durability
  • ease of operation
  • ease of maintenance
  • availability
  • compatibility
  • upgradeability
  • power consumption
  • price
#3. Your Policies
customer feel welcome, tolerated or punished by your policies for pricing, payment, warranty, guarantee, maintenance, delivery, etc...

#4. Your Progress
  • fast or slow serve?
  • slow / fast respond?
  • single point or one stop point?
  • warm?
  • problem solving on the spot?
Sesi 3 - Service Communication (Engagement)
  • Keep your people up to date with whats happening, whats changing, whats coming next and most of all whats needed now.
  • Can educate and inform, connect people and encourage collaboration, motivate, courage, encourage and inspire.
Dasar-dasar percakapan yang berhasil :
  • kejujuran
  • integritas
  • kepedulian
Charismatic character :
Yang membangun karisma adalah :
  • presence (the power of listening, lihat dibawah)
  • warmth (lihat dibawah)
  • power (lihat dibawah)
The power of listening :
  • personal listening = asumsi pribadi pada saat mendengar orang lain.
  • focused listening = membuang asumsi pribadi anda, dan menanyakan apa maksudnya / klarifikasi hal yang tidak dimengerti.
  • global listening = focused listening + grab / catch their feeling
Tahapan global listening :
  • apa maksud lebih jelasnya?
  • apa yang kamu inginkan?
  • apa yang akan kamu lakukan?
  • apa yang menjadi prioritas apa yang akan anda lakukan untuk mengatasi masalah itu?
  • apa yang bisa saya bantu?
Warmth :
  • the true power of water > apresiasi
  • giving positive feedback
  • mengucapkan terima kasih
  • menggunakan verbal yang baik
Power : 
  • garis nasib = gerakan > perasaan > keputusan > tindakan / respon > kebiasaan > karakter > nasib
Mungkin tidak semua mengerti hanya dari poin - poin diatas. Secara ringkasnya, training ini dibagi kepada 3 sesi : dasar service, desain service dan pengaplikasian / komunikasi service itu sendiri. Dalam sesi pertama, kita harus memilih level service yang ingin kita berikan, tentunya semakin atas levelnya semakin baik. Kemudian bagaimana kita mengenai value dan hot button yang kita miliki agar selalu bisa memberikan service yang terbaik. Pada sesi kedua, kita mendesain service itu sendiri, berdasarkan bisnis nya AGIT dalam setiap service transactions. Selain itu kita belajar meningkatkan perception points dari bisnis / service itu sendiri. Terakhir, pada sesi ketiga kita belajar untuk mengaplikasikan dan mengkomunikasikan service kita lewat percakapan yang berhasil, menjadi karakter atau pribadi yang berkarisma.

Mungkin itu saja yang dapat saya sampaikan dalam artikel blog ini. Kalau ada teman-teman yang masih ingin bertanya atau berdiskusi tentang hal ini silahkan japri saja. Terakhir saya ingin mengucapkan terima kasih tentunya kepada perusahaan saya AGIT untuk kesempatan belajar lewat training ini dan kepada team ButterflyAct untuk ilmu dan wawasan yang dibagikan di training ini. Sukses selalu untuk kita semua. Amin.

Layanan AGIT :
Inspiring Business, Delivering Value.

Layanan ButterflyAct : 
The key to realizing a dream is to focus not on success but significance - and then even the small steps and little victories along your path will take on greater meaning. 
Oprah Winfrey, O Magazine, September 2002

Thursday, March 12, 2015

My Business Development VS Sales Job Overview

Good morning. Today, I would like to share about my job as a Business Development & PRM in IT industry. PRM stand for Partner Relationship Manager. So one of my job is to maintain relationship with partner or principal. In my case I manage several products like MicroStrategy, IBM, TIBCO, etc... It's quite easy to tell you about the PRM, but how about business development?

Some people say business development / BD is about sales. Some say it is about marketing. So, which one is correct? Well, I don't know but with my experience I can tell you that both of them is correct. In my company, I do both roles, sales & marketing. Before we going further, let's understand the BD definition from this 2 source:

Business development comprises a number of tasks and processes generally aiming at developing and implementing growth opportunities between multiple organizations. It is a subset of the fields of business, commerce and organizational theory. Business development is the creation of long-term value for an organization from customers, markets, and relationships. 

Business function focused on strategy, creating strategic partnerships and long-term relationships with suppliers and customers. The business development function within a business can be thought of as a jack-of-all-trades position focused on strategic deal-making with an eye toward increasing sales and expanding the company’s long-term business success or scope. 

So? From the paragraphs above, 1 word across my mind, it is strategy. Strategy how business can survive and grow in the market. Next, what is the difference between sales and business development? I would like to share article by Andrew Dumont. It is very clear and insightful.

The Difference Between Sales and Business Development

When you think about the function of business development, it should be thought of as a marketing function. Yes, there are some soft sales skills (qualification, negotiation, etc.) that are necessary to become a good business development professional, but at the end of the day, it's a marketing function.

If you were to think about it on a sliding scale between a pure function of sales or marketing, it would wind up somewhere around here.

The reason behind this, is that typical goals of business development include brand placement, market expansion, new user acquisition, and awareness -- all of which are shared goals of marketing. The slight slide towards sales is simply because of the tactics business development employs to achieve those goals.

Which is where we get into the meat of it.

Regardless of the company, business development tends to hold the same structure, which I sketched up quickly below.

Simply stated, the function of sales is to sell directly to the end customer. The function of business development is to work through partners to sell to the end customer, in a scalable way.

That last part is key.

Scalability is the differentiator. It allows a company to use pre-existing sales teams or communities that a partner has developed to reach new audiences. Sales is very much an equation of capacity, which is why sales teams tend to grow so large. Business development teams, on the other hand, are typically very small, maintaining their small size by working through existing partner infrastructures. The art of business development comes in identifying partners that fit that description, while finding a way to provide value to the partner's end customer and business.


I agree with Andrew, that based on function, sales is to sell directly to end customer, but BD is to work through partners or through sales it self. In my company "through sales it self" called presales. So I need to support the sales team before the project deal. I conduct some product and competitor research, create a solution and strategy, negotiate the solution with customer and in summary coordinate and bridging the sales and the customer. I have to manage relationship with customer too, so we can identify what they really needs and to build trust. 

Beyond that, I develop concept and content for the business development itself. Concept is about whole package solution or framework. How we improve our solution in the future. Content is about how we are going to achieve or realize the concept. So maybe that's all I can tell you about my job in business development. I am also a business analyst and analytics (business intelligence) consultant. But let's discuss it later. I have to go to work. Thank you for reading. :)

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

What Is Churn Rate ? - Churn Rate Analysis Overview

Hello everybody. Today I would like to share about churn overview. Some of you might be have known about this, but some of you might not. So what is churn? what is churn analysis? what is churn rate? I have been tried to research about this, and below is the summary:

Customer attrition, also known as customer churn, customer turnover, or customer defection, is the loss of clients or customers.

The primary goal of churn analysis is to identify those customers that are most likely to discontinue using your service or product. In this dynamic financial industry, companies are progressively providing products and services with similar features. Amidst this ever growing competition, the cost of acquiring a new customer typically exceeds the cost of retaining a current customer. Existing customers are a valuable asset. Furthermore, given the nature of the financial services industry, where customers generally tend to stay with a company for a longer term, churning could lead to substantial revenue loss.

is the amount of customers or subscribers who cut ties with your service or company during a given time period. These customers have “churned.”

Churn rate can be represented in a number of ways, including:

It is possible to have a negative churn rate. This happens when your existing customer base spends more in a given month than they did in the previous month. Businesses who “upsell” their customers to more expensive plans without losing existing business experience negative churn.

Keeping track of your churn rate is tantamount to success. Normally, it’s cheaper and easier to retain customers than it is to go through the process of acquiring new ones. Monitoring churn allows you to consider what you’re doing to keep customers, and see what actions might result in a higher retention rate.

Calculating Churn Rate

Let’s say you are a company that publishes a magazine. You have 100 subscribers. In the month of May, you have seven new customers sign up for subscription service and have 3 end their subscriptions.

Different practitioners may choose to calculate the “churn rate” for this month in different ways. The most traditional formula would be the number of customers lost divided by the number of customers at the start of the month.

Some businesses choose to base their churn rate off of the number of subscribers at the end of the period instead of the beginning of the period.

Churn Rate for eCommerce Businesses

Sometimes, an eCommerce business may wish to calculate its churn rate. However, most eCommerce businesses do not have a recurring revenue model or explicitly defined “subscribers” or “subscriptions.”

To resolve this, eCommerce companies must decide what characteristics constitute a “churn” event. For example, if a company knows that most of their customers who will make a repeat purchase do so within 90 days, they may choose to mark any customer who has not made a purchase in 90 days as “churned.”


Currently, in my job I am trying to conduct this churn analysis. As a business development and sales engineer, I have to know about my market. I have to identify customers that using my product and services. I do have same opinion like the article above that maintain customer in my case =  accounts is much much more easier thank create / acquire another account. B2B is very different with B2C, but this churn analysis is very useful for both of them.

When the churn rate is increasing, I discover that something wrong happened with my company, product or services. We may have loss some business value. We should aware that the "relationship" with the customer is in danger. The other customers that used the same product or service may have been impacted as well. We should find the fix the root cause as soon as possible. I hope this article could be useful for you guys. Thank you.