22 December 2006

Long Time No See Beta

"Time is free, but it's priceless. You can't own it, but you can use it. You can't keep it, but you can spend it. Once you've lost it you can never get it back." Harvey MacKay

Nei ho ma?

Ng g lei?

U no la!

No good wor.

I don't have bor.

Not me ar.

Ma fan lor.

Difficult ga!


What...? What did you say?

Don't get panic and confused. You are not alone. "La ar wor" is a different kind of "language" developed by the new generation of Hongkongers. If you are from the older generation, it is perfectly normal that you do not understand.

However, nothing is non-understandable as long as there is a way to understand it. Willing or not, that is the question.

"La ar wor" is not morse code. It can be cracked easily. One of the ways is to understand Cantonese slang.

Each letter or word selected has similar pronounciation of the word in Cantonese. For example, "ng" means "don't", and "g" means "know." "Ng g" means "don't know." Sometimes, it is the Hong Kong's way of pronouncing English. "No" actually means "know."

"La ar wor" definitely is not English. It is not even slang. If slang can be categorized into good and bad, then "law ar wor" is the worst. However, it may one day become the norm, such as "long time no see."

Although the language is commonly used among a group of young generation, it is starting to affect the society as a whole, and even becomes acceptable.

Some even encourage the new generation to write the worst slang because writing in bad quality is better than nothing at all. The older generation can at least understand the younger generation better. However, is this conversation without communication?

There are 4 types of people in terms of "la ar wor."

Noble - You know the meaning but you won't write it.

Gen BB* - You know nothing about it, that's why you won't be able to write it

Gen Z* - You know the meaning, and you use it

Copycat - You don't know "la ar wor" but you use it because everyone
around you uses it

Good English... long time no see...

* BB stands for baby boomer. Z implies inferior, the last letter in alphabet.

21 December 2006

Word Ladder

"If the ladder is not leaning against the right wall, every step we take just gets us to the wrong place faster." Stephen R Covey

A word ladder is simply a series of words in which each successive word is constructed by adding/removing/changing only one letter in the preceeding word.

For example, change LOSE to FIND.


The objectives of the game are twofold. First, change the start word to the end word. Second, change the word in the fewest steps possible.

Most buildings nowadyas have both elevator and ladder, and most people would opt for elevator most of the time. It is time saving, but it is usually crowded during peak hours. Although it is a healthy exercise to climb the ladder, it requires more physical effort and takes more time. However, in case of emergency, it is advised that everyone should take ladder instead of elevator.

Old things still have their value when everything is back to basics.

Word ladder is invented by Lewis Carroll.

11 December 2006

Sleepless in... Beta

"Tomorrow night is nothing but one long sleepless wrestle with yesterday's omissions and regrets." William Faulkner

It is difficult for some people to sleep. They just have difficulties to repay sleep debt. To sleep more is impossible.

How much sleep is really needed? 8 hours, the common recommendation? More, or less?

To those who have problems getting enough sleep, 1 hour is more than enough. However, sleeping more does not mean the person will be healthier.

If one does not have enough sleep, the person is more likely to have impaired judgment, diminished creativity and productivity, inability to concentrate, reduced language and communication skills, slow reaction times, and decreased abilities to learn and remember are just some of the resutls of insomnia.

Sleep quality is more important than sleep quantity.

06 December 2006

X in 1 Beta

Nowadays, almost everything comes in a combination of several deliverables, such as mobile-PDA-MP3-Camera, and printer-fax-scanner-copier. This mix-and-match is designed to provide convenience to users, but there is tradeoff. Quality of each function suffers.

One benefit of X-in-one, where X represents the number of deliverables combined, is that everything comes in handy. However, it is like putting all eggs in one basket. If one deliverable is out of order, then the value of the whole deliverable
may drop. In order to minimize negative experience, contingency plan may be required. If backup is needed to maintain positive experience, then why X-in-1 in the first place? Backup increases the total cost of ownership (TCO).

As a matter of fact, everything should be backed up. Backup is about risk management. It ensures continuity, and continuity makes endurance possible. Backup strengthens confidence by shortening recovery time when things go wrong.

If there is backup, eveyone feels more comfortable and secure. However, Backup does not actually minimize risk, because people with contingency plans are more proned to take challenge. Backup promotes risk taking. If plan A fails, then there is always plan B. Although the alternative may not be the best of the best option, it won't be
the worst, and as long as it is not the worst, it is definitely better than nothing.

Which is better? X-in-1, or many different single identities? There is no absolute answer. As long as the deliverables touchpoint experience is positive, it can be a combination of both X-in-1 and many ones.

26 November 2006


"Hope for the best, prepare for the worst." Anonymous

Everyone wants to be happy. But how? There ain't no such thing as a free lunch. Nothing is free, because everything has an opportunity cost. Even air, the necessity of human life, is not free. Everyone has to spend effort to breathe in and out effortlessly. Healthy life cannot be achieved at no cost. If one wants to acquire cleaned but not polluted air, effort will be enormous.

One gets what one pays for. Nobody is nice enough to offer anyone anything for free. Unconditional offering is a smokescreen. Sooner or later, everyone expects at least something in return. After all, who is willing to forever give without ever taking? Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me!

Happiness? Try UPOD.

UPOD stands for "under-promise over-deliver." Why under promise? Simple. Set low expectations. When nobody has any expectation on anything, disappointment is distant. Life will be easier. Once expectation is set, especially high expectation, everything starts to tense up, and becomes fragile. Touchpoint experience is usually negative when expectation is high.

Touchpoint experience is more likely to be positive when there is no expectation. No expectation is different from no hope. Expectation asks for something in return. Return is a condition. Hope is just a wishful thinking, and does not necessarily have an expectation. Return is a bonus.

Peter hopes he has a girl friend. No harm done if he has not. John expects he will have a girl friend soon because of his achievement. He will be upset if he is still single for months. David expects a so-so girl friend, but his girl friend is angel from heaven. He is more than happy!

When the deliverable is over-delivered, the experience will be positive. How to OD? UP!

UPOD makes WOW possible.


"Hatred does not cease by hatred, but only by love; this is the eternal rule." Buddha

Hatred is settled anger.

19 November 2006

Music Beta

"There is no noise, only sound." John Cage

A song consists of two major elements: melody and lyrics. People are easily attracted to good melody, but may not pay much attention to lyrics quality.

Melody is just like words. As long as one knows the 26 alphabets, one can create any words using any combination. Be creative, and think out of the box. They don't have to make sense. Play with the notes, and anyone can then be a composer.

But lyrics, it's trying to make sense out of nothing. Each word has to form rthyme with the melody. The deliverable is produced within limitation, or a defined framework.

Lyrics is more difficult to create than melody.

Melody is like outer beauty, and lyrics inner beauty.

One may love a song because of its melody. There is "love at first sight", so there has to be "love at first sound."

One can have three types of feelings towards a song: positive, neutral, and negative. It is a very subjective feeling. Nobody can force anyone to love a song. Great songs have the ability to
touch people's heart. Bad songs simply create noise!

Noise is sound when the melody is relevant. Some people like Jazz but don't like Rock. To them, rock is noise. Some people like R&B but not folk, folk to them is noise. It's all about relevance.

However, relevance won't lead to compromise and deliver positive results. Relevance is the A in the AIDA model, or Attention, Interest, Desire and Action.

Relevance definitely helps attract attention, and may also help arouse interest, but it may not be able to stimulate desire and prompt action.

Desire is an emotion. Nobody can force anyone to do anything the person isn't willing to do. Sometimes logic just won't do. Social pressure may help, but people with strong ego won't be affected.

Action is taken under two situations: impulse and calculated.

13 November 2006

Zebra Beta

"Light is meaningful only in relation to darkness, and truth presupposes error. It is these mingled opposites which people our life, which make it pungent, intoxicating. We only exist in terms of this conflict, in the zone where black and white clash." Louis Aragon

Zebra exists in the form of black and white, similar to panda. The only difference between the two is the color layout. Zebra comes in stripes, where panda is usually white with black patches around the eyes, ears, shoulders, chest, legs, and feet. Although both animals are in black and white, zebra is more complicated. Is zebra is white with black or black with white? This is an unorthodoxical. It is like asking which comes first: chicken or eggs.

Interestingly enough, this is human nature. People like to do sophisticated things to either show off or pretend that they are deep. They want to be different. Everyone has the tendency to complicate simple things. If the complications bring in benefits, it at least is worthwhile to understand the results. Else, if the complication is complicated only for the sake of complication, then it is only going
to be a waste of time.

Black and white has a sharp contrast. The opposite of black is white, and vice versa. In the world of black and white, there is no rainbow. There is no red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo and violet. Everything is simple, and there is a clear line drawn between everything. What is yours is not mine, and what is mine is not yours. Everything is clearly defined that no grey area exists.

Color creates significant visual impact, but everything becomes complicated. Everyone has to make choice when there is more than one, and he or she has to go through more complicated decision making process when there are more than two.

Which color is better? Grey? How grey? Red? Bloody red? When color is color, the choice is simply personal preference. But when color is used to represent personal character, everything is simply in chaos.

If black is negative and white is positive, then where is neutral? It has to be somewhere in between, and that is the grey area. In the grey area, nobody is sure of anything. It is like the color of sky. If it is blue, the weather is fine. If it is black, then it will rain like cats and dogs. But grey, is it going to rain or not? How should everyone prepare? Everything is indecisive and in a wait-and-see
mode. Nobody can move forward or backward. It just stucks!

When there is only black and white, even the mathematical function is simpler. Black plus white equals grey.

04 November 2006

Happy Birthday

"I binge when I'm happy. When everything is going really well, every day is like I'm at a birthday party." Kirstie Alley

Everyone has a birthday, and everyone has only one birthday. The birthday is unique. Because it is so unique and it is "owned" by the person, the birthday person expects something special on his or her birthday. If nothing happens on birthday, the birthday person may get upset because of expectation.

Birthday is usually celebrated with gifts and surprises. Birthday is about happiness. No matter how unhappy the person is, he or she has to be happy if the day is birthday. It is simply not right to have sadness on birthday. It is against the norm.

However, if birthday is really about happiness, then every day is birthday when every second is filled with joy. If continuous efforts are required to create happiness, then it is not true happiness. It is only about return on investment. True happiness is a natural state, and definitely not artificial.

Happy birthday is only an excuse to do something special. But why anyone needs this excuse? Follow heart, and just do it!

Nobody is going to be truly happy if the happiness relies on something external, like a job, a spouse, or money. True happiness comes from within.

Happy birthday!

31 October 2006

Black Magic Beta

"Magic is believing in yourself, if you can do that, you can make anything happen." Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

A is apple, B is banana, C is coconut, what is D? (Answer will be given later.)

Black is not white, but it usually represents bad luck. It is just a color. Why is there relationship between luck and color?

Is it because the pronunciation of black is similar to bad, so everyone associates black with bad? Or because black is the color of the night, and night is related to rest, and rest is somewhat related to death, so black is the symbol of angel of death?

Nobody knows for sure, and who cares? When the majority refers black to bad luck, then the only option for the rest is to follow suit in order not to be isolated. Going with the main stream is the survival of the smartest.

Magic is either about making something out of nothing, or turning everything into nothing. Magic creates surprises by not meeting expectations.

What is black magic?

It is just a name. Everything has to have an identity.

Now close your eyes and image, under a grey sky, with a blue mood, drinking a cup of black coffee...

(D could be anything as long as the answer starts with "D is...")

22 October 2006


"Uncertainty and mystery are energies of life. Don't let them scare you unduly, for they keep boredom at bay and spark creativity." R I Fitzhenry

Everyone wants to remove the fear of uncertainty from the future. Regrettably, unknown is part of life. Perhaps x is the most used alphabet to represent the unknown.

Everyone would rather remember positive things than negative, because the good old memories are always happier. Life already has more downs than ups. Positive memories can give hope that tomorrow will be better, and serve as a balance.

Negative will reinforce negative, and push everything to negative further. When the limit is reached, and point of return is impossible, everything becomes irrelevant to everyone, because nobody likes to get involved with negativity. It is therefore important to turn every negative into positive, and stay positive.

Without negativity, the concept of positive does not exist. Everything is relative. Because there is black, there is white. Because there is right, there is wrong. Because there is certainty, there is uncertainty.

Fear uncertainty not, as nothing is certain. Everyone fears death, and death is unavoidable. Nobody can escape from it. It is just another certainty. Certainty plus uncertainty equals everything. If everyone fears everything, nobody is brave enough to do anything, and everything ultimately results in nothing.

Instead of worrying about uncertainty, try to enjoy uncertainty. Forget about prediction. It is just another waste of time. Nothing is predictable. The ability to manage adversity positively is all.

15 October 2006

Bye Beta

"When great love is rejected, something inside a man dies. So all he can do is run away, where he can meet the girl he'll love second most... unless... unless you can get to him before he closes the book on you. But once it's closed, it's closed. It's finished. It's gone, dead. It's crushed. It's beaten. It's buried. It is lost for all of time in a sea..." Cathy in Win a Date with Tad Hamilton

Change is the only constant. Nobody has control over anything, and nothing is certain but death, taxes and holidays. When something has changed, it is no longer the same, and impossible to return to square one. Let bygones be bygones, and start everything from scratch pretending that nothing has ever happened? Is that possible, even though impossible is nothing?

History is memory. Unless the person is suffered from permanent loss of memory, every little change has more or less some impact. Not only the bygones will not be forgotten, but the possibility of building the yet-to-come is very limited.

It is difficult to say bye to almost everything, particularly positive deliverables. However, everything goes through the same up and down pattern, just like the product life cycle. Lucky are those who do not have to repeat the pattern frequently. Positive deliverables, if not properly maintained, will eventually turn into negative deliverables.

People just do not let go. They cling on to the positive deliverables till the end, even when they have actually become rotten. They have difficulties realizing that what they once have is not the same.


08 October 2006


"Seeing the BMW may make you feel unhappy, but, psychological studies show, obtaining the BMW would not make you happy! Envy and dissatisfaction come from lacking what others possess, but coming into possession of those things does not confer happiness." Gregg Easterbrook

BMW stands for "big mouth woman", a person who can't keep any secret. But why women? Men don't gossip? Men are good at keeping secrets? If not, then why not BMM, but BMW? Is this term created by some male chauvinist pigs, who like to discriminate against women?

There are many other funny words, such as STOP meaning "Same Time Old Place", VSOP for "Very Stupid Old Potato", and MBA "Married But Available".

Except for STOP, BMW and VSOP are negative. MBA is ethically incorrect.

What is wrong with potato? Why is potato old and stupid? Because of its shape and surface? It is not a sin to look ugly, but it is a sin to judge. Nobody is qualified to judge others. Moreover, there is no relationship between ugly and intelligence. Why potato, but not tomato?

MBA is a status. However, having an MBA doesn't necessarily provide the shortcut to rich and famous. Originally an MBA is a must-have to those who want to climb up the corporate ladder, but now who wants an MBA if it means an animal engaging actively in sexual activities? It may still be a nice-to-have for those who can afford the time and money.


Chill out... nothing personal.

People use these terms only to help people relate and therefore remember.

When BMW is used, everyone can relate it to "the ultimate driving machine". But BMM? Nobody can associate BMM to anything. Instead of requiring people to memorize one more irrelevant thing, one has to make irrelevant relevant, especially when everyone has limited RAM, or Random Assess Memory. Association helps make irrelevant relevant.

Nickname is also about association. As long as the nickname contains no personal detriment and has special meaning, it breaks the ice faster, and fosters positive touchpoint experience.

30 September 2006

The End

"This is not the end. It is not even the beginning of the end. But it is, perhaps, the end of the beginning." Winston Churchill

People usually experience negativity when good things come to an end. Everyone wants good things to last. When luck is on one's side, nothing is impossible. Nobody welcomes bad things. If unfortunately they have to come, everyone wants them to be the beginning of the end, and gets rid of them as soon as possible.

Life full of downs is miserable. Who wants a life like this? Who doesn't want a happy life, from start to completion? But if this is the life, what can one do? Some may be mourning everyday. Some may even commit suicide. Some may be brave enough to challenge destiny, and work hard to change the situation. How many of those efforts will have tangible payoff? How many dreams can come true? Pareto's 80/20 rule says it all. Approximately 20% of the world population can live a happy life, where the remaining 80% on the edge of poverty line. How can one be the lucky few? It is like giving birth to a baby. Over one hundred million sperm is ejaculated during sexual stimulation and excitement, but only a few dozen can complete the journey, and of these, only one will succeed in fertilizing the egg.

Forget about it!

It's all about attitude.

Those who live a sad life should be happy that they are at least living. As long as they are living in good health, there is always hope. Hope for the best, but always prepare for the worst. Happy are those who are content with what they already have, instead of complaining what haven't and why isn't.

Life itself is neutral. It has meaning when people starts to compare with an attitude.

Everything can be positive if one has the right attitude.

24 September 2006


"It is not who is right, but what is right, that is of importance." Thomas Huxley

"Do you love me?"
"What do you think?"

"Can you please do me a favor?"

"Do you understand?"
"Does it matter?"

Whenever a question is asked, everyone expects an answer related to the question. Answering question with question only deliver negative touchpoint experience. This kind of answering technique is not funny, and definitely not the art of negotiation!

Every question has only two types of answers: yes, and no. Everything else is just the process of getting to yes or no.

Nobody is going to have problem with yes, but if the answer is no, the person can either keep asking why no, or simply give up. Although no may deliver negative experience, no at least provides a direction. Nobody has to guess anything. Guessing is a time-consuming and torturing exercise. If the answer is just another question, who has the patience and motivation to solve one question after another?

The other common unproductive answers are "don't know", "maybe", and "depends".

"Don't know" is not an answer but excuse. Nobody wants an excuse as the answer, because everyone is already good at making excuses. Besides, excuses produce nothing. Everyone simply wants an actionable answer to move forward.

"Maybe" is just another piece of bullshit. Yes is yes, and no means no. Is maybe a no or yes? A question is in fact an identified trouble which needs to be solved as soon as possible before another question pops up. Who wants to spend time figuring out what the maybe actually implies! Similarly, black is black, and white is white. Gray area is where chaos lies.

"Depends" is another waste of time. Everyone knows everything is dependent on other factors. Who needs others to tell everyone the obvious!? What everyone wants is a solution, not more complications.

"Do you love me?"
"Yes, I do!"

"Can you please do me a favor?"
"No, sorry."

"Do you understand?"
"Yes, thank you."

17 September 2006

Survival of the Fittest Beta

"Though nature grants vast periods of time for the work of natural selection, she does not grant an indefinite period; for as all organic beings are striving, it may be said, to seize on each place in the economy of nature, if any one species does not become modified and improved in a corresponding degree with its competitors, it will soon be exterminated." Charles Darwin

What is the key message of "survival of the fittest"?

Everyone should make oneself relevant and others irrelevant, although being relevant won't necessarily get anyone anywhere.

There are two types of relevance: true and false. True relevance is about things relevant to one naturally, such as kinship and personal needs. False relevance is about creating relevance in order to survive, such as working relationship in an internal organization.

In true relevance, it is difficult to make relevant irrelevant, but it's possible to make irrelevant relevant. Once the bond is formed, it becomes part of everyone's everything. Nobody can break the linkage,

In false relevance, it's all about tangible value, or return on investment (ROI), and intangible value, or experience. Experience is also a kind of ROI. The better the experience, the higher the ROI. Positive ROI and experience are therefore the keys to make irrelevant relevant.

13 September 2006

Rest Beta

"It is not good for all our wishes to be filled; through sickness we recognize the value of health; through evil, the value of good; through hunger, the value of food; through exertion, the value of rest." Dorothy Canfield Fisher

Nobody can work 24x7 for 365 days without a break. People are only flesh-and-blood human beings, and need rest in order to refresh and recharge, and more importantly avoid burnout.

Workaholic keeps working, blindly believe that this is the most effective way to get things done. However, working long hours is ineffective. Productivity drops. Pressure increases. Performance suffers. The idea of "the longer hours one works, the more one achieves" is simply not true.

Effectiveness is about getting right things done. But what are the right things? Defining them is already a time consuming exercise. People seldom plan before act, and don't like to invent the wheel. Invention is about trial and error. Who likes to be judged and critized by others on a regular basis? In order to save face, almost everyone chooses to be a follower instead of being a pioneer. It's better to be a winning follower than a losing pioneer.

Most people are good at doing things right, and they rather do things right than do right things. As long as something is done right, people will get recognized. Right things? It is difficult to identify right things, but it is not difficult to do things right. Solutions are available everywhere. Even if the solutions are not available, they are sooner or later made available.

Commitment is more important. Workaholic may not be effective. If effective, then why keep working?


TBC can either stand for "to be continued" or "to be confirmed".

For the past few months, this blog has been producing article almost on a daily basis. Everyone has only 24 hours a day. Writing a blog takes up about 2 hours. Another 6 hours go for sleeping. 10 hours working. 2 hours traveling. 4 hours surfing the net. Time is simply not enough. What should be done will never get done if the existing pattern persists.

Instead of writing blog every day, it will be updated on a weekly basis.


12 September 2006

Take-it-or-leave-it Beta

"Love grows by giving. The love we give away is the only love we keep. The only way to retain love is to give it away." Elbert Hubbard

11 September 2006

911 - Beta

"The attack of 9/11 was just a bigger and more effective terrorist attack. For a century and more, we have withstood such murderers on trains, in terminals, on aircraft, in federal buildings, even in the halls of Congress, without cowering." Nick Clooney

911 is the number to report an emergency in the United States.

911 is a sports car made by Porsche.

911 is the terrorist attack on America on 11 September 2001.

911 is anything as long as it means something to anyone.

Different person has different definition of 911. People with same definition will group together because of shared values. People with different definition will have difficulties linking together because they have no common language. Even if they are forced to put in the same group, sooner or later this will result in negative touchpoint experience.

If the person is willing, then he or she will just do everything no matter how difficult it is. If not willing, he or she will not do anything even if it is as easy as ABC.

10 September 2006

Selfish Beta

"To be successful you have to be selfish, or else you never achieve. And once you get to your highest level, then you have to be unselfish. Stay reachable. Stay in touch. Don't isolate." Michael Jordan

Everyone is selfish.

People who make a request for something seldom care about how others feel. They think only of their own needs, and want the deliverable asap. They don't know the Golden Rule. Even if they know, they will immediately forget when they request others to help and support.

09 September 2006

I Love You... Beta

"Not everything that can be counted counts, and not everything that counts can be counted." Albert Einstein

Love is nothing if return is required. Any activity whose ultimate objective is to get a return is only a business. Marrying up is therefore marrying an investment.

Love is patience, but it won't last long. If the probation is 3 months, then the cover-up will be uncovered once the relationship is stable, and break up is unlikely. This usually can be achieved within the probation period. After probation, everything is a different story.

Every relationship starts off with a mask. The cover-up is basically used to maintain the first positive touchpoint experience, or impression. It is difficult to break the ice, and it is more difficult to further build positive impression. If both are achieved, it is "well begun, half done." Everyone who has the first half done will do everything to ensure the remaining half will also get done. Otherwise, effort spent earlier is simply wasted. Reputation/branding is hard to build, but easy to break. Although nothing is indispensable, breaking up is hard to do when the relationship is solid.

Untrue love is all about selling. In fact, almost everything comes down to selling.

Although Peter Drucker says "the aim of marketing is to make selling superfluous", the objective of marketing is also to make something people want to buy, or something an enterprise can sell. Marketing is about selling. It is then unfair to demote sales and promote marketing. Nobody cares if it is sales or marketing effort to get the product moving as long as it is moving.

Everyone should love everyone else. I love you. You are everything, from bottom to up, from side to side, from top to down.

08 September 2006


"I love walking in the rain, because then nobody knows I'm crying." Anonymous

Rain starts with a drop, then a few more drops, then finally tap... tap... tap...

Rain comes down in every direction possible, at many different speeds and amounts.

Rain washes away the old and worries, refreshes everything and make a new beginning.

Rain cools everything down, and slows everything down.

Rain relaxes everything and everyone it touches.

Rain is the nature's way of crying.

Rain is the sound of nature.

Tear is the rain in the heart.

Tear is usually caused by negative touchpoint experience. After the cry, people may either feel empty/neutral or better/positive.

Negative is usually followed by positive. People take pity on the weak and the needy, and are often too willing to offer assistance with respect.

07 September 2006

Relevance Beta

"I don't spend much time thinking about whether God exists. I don't consider that a relevant question. It's unanswerable and irrelevant to my life, so I put it in the category of things I can't worry about." Wendy Kaminer

People are only interested in things of relevance due to limited resources and time constraint. If there is no limitation, people may want to know everything. Knowledge is power.

Everything that is not relevant is irrelevant. When it is irrelevant, it is often ignored and neglected. However, things that are irrelevant to one person may be relevant to another person. Everyone has his or her own definition of relevance due to different value.

In the long run, nothing is irrelevant, and everything is relevant.

Take golf as an example. It is the game for rich and famous in the past, but now it's open to public. If the person wants to build rapport with others, then he or she has to learn golf.

Take in-house training as another example. The participant usually may not need the training, but he or she still has to attend due to management's nomination. In the captive environment, the training may be relevant during the session but irrelevant after.

The implication is that if the deliverable is relevance to one's needs, even if the process to obtain the deliverable is difficult, the person will still work hard to get it. If irrelevant, even if the access to the deliverable is free, the person will not bother to take any action.

Alliance is formed when there is common language, and common language is developed when people sharing relevant interests join together. When there is relevance, it is easier to break the ice, and build rapport.

06 September 2006

Good Morning

“Good morning is a contradiction of terms.” Jim Davis

One should be thankful if one can get up the next day. If one passes away during sleep, one should be more thankful because he or she needs not go through any painful process. Usually, death is painful.

People take everything for granted, and think death won't happen during sleep. According to The Lancet, the leading causes of death worldwide in 2001 were heart disease and stroke. Sleep during death? This is uncommon and rare, so it won't happen to those who lead a healthy life. However, nobody can predict life, but everyone knows for sure that the angel of death will come. The question is how and when? That's the unknown.

It is indeed a blessing that one can get up after a good night's sleep.

If it's been a long time saying good morning to others, light up everyone's day by saying good morning today.

It's positive touchpoint experience.

05 September 2006


"Life is all about timing... the unreachable becomes reachable, the unavailable become available, the unattainable... attainable. Have the patience, wait it out. It's all about timing." Stacey Charter

How long does it take for one second to pass away?

Nobody cares about one second, because it's insignificant. Every day there are 24 hours. Each hour has 60 minutes. Each minute has 60 seconds. One second is only 1/86,400 of a day. Since one second is abundant in supply, the value of one second is almost zero. However, without one second, there won't be a minute. Without a minute, there won't be an hour. Without an hour, there won't be a day. A second is actually the building block of a day. This is a simple fact that everybody ignores.

Even if time is lost and cannot be regained, time lost is simply time lost. There is nothing to be sorry about, and there is nothing wrong with wasting time. Everybody is happy with it...

Wait a second! Everything can be turned upside down in just a second. Positive touchpoint experience can be turned negative, and vice versa. It's basically a take-it-or-leave-it scenario. Everyone can do one thing in one second to change everything. The question is, to be or not to be.

Please visit http://lorelle.wordpress.com/2005/10/20/30-things-you-can-do-to-change-the-world-in-30-seconds/ to see which 30 things one can do to change the world.

How soon does a person take to realize one second has passed?


Tic... Tac... Tic... Tac... Tic... Tac...

Back to 0000, either midnight at the start or end of a day.

04 September 2006


"Doubt yourself and you doubt everything you see. Judge yourself and you see judges everywhere. But if you listen to the sound of your own voice, you can rise above doubt and judgment. And you can see forever." Nancy Lopez

Nothing lasts. Everything has a deadline. There is no forever.


Is that a fact?

True love lasts, but what is true love?

Love at first sight is hardly true love. Love at first sight is only about physical attraction. Nobody knows anybody. It isn't even love.

True love is unconditional, and does not ask anything in return. ROI (return on investment) is zero!? Love isn't an investment, so ROI doesn't even apply.

"Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud, or rude. Love does not demand its own way. Love is not irritable, and it keeps no record of when it has been wronged. It is never glad about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance. Love will last forever." 1 Corinthians 13:4-8

True love requires mutual trust, and trust is the root of positive touchpoint experience.

"But now abide faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love." 1 Corinthians 13:13

03 September 2006


"The hurrier I go, the behinder I get." Anonymous

People are always in a rush. It seems that rushing can save a lot of time when in fact preparing should be what people do in order to save time. Every morning everyone rushes to the MTR station. If transfer to another station is needed, everyone again runs to the transfer station. It's a pressure just to see them walking at running speed. How do they use the time saved up? They just keep rushing. Sooner or later, it becomes a habit, or a meaningless exercise.

People basically rush for nothing, because nobody is really in a hurry. Besides, if something is not available, there is always alternative. Everyone is only having more choices of everything every day. Choices are endless. Why the rush?

The rush is actually created by people themselves. Time constraint is defined by a deadline, and deadline is set by people.

People who don't have patience are always in a rush. They have no peace of mind, push others out of comfort zone, and give tremendous pressure not only to others but also themselves. They think that things will get done faster if they work in a hurry, but they don't realize that when everything is in a hurry, it's also in a mess and hard to focus. Without focus, things will not get done faster but slower. This is a vicious cycle, and will always result in negative people experience.

Negative people experience may affect execution and produce negative deliverable experience. Even if the end deliverable delivers positive experience, the negative people experience may outweigh everything.

Happy employees serve customers better and make happy customers. Look no further for ways to achieve and improve customer satisfaction. Develop an environment where internal people experience is always positive. It's like the powerful impact of positive word of mouth. Happy customer is the greatest advertisement. Happy employee is the greatest asset.

02 September 2006


"Just because you do not take an interest in politics doesn't mean politics won't take an interest in you" Pericles

Politics is about a group of people performing great shows. It's nothing significant but mainly electing, voting, insulting, and lying (evil). It exists to serve not the majority ordinary but the minority extraordinary. Politics is all about people.

Economics is about the well-being of each individual in the economy. Deliverable is the focus. It is definitely far more productive than politics.

Developed economy focuses on economics but not politics. Leaders in developed country know that money is ultimately what matters. It really doesn't matter how politically strong a country is, but how economically strong. GDP counts.

More importantly, nobody in the economy bothers who's who in the political theatre because politicians don't make money, but everyone is concerned about what's what in the economic platform because this will affect standard of living.

Although politics is not everyone's primary interest, the unproductive politicians always make a storm in a teacup to get attention.

01 September 2006


What's more important? Consumers' health and well being? Or revenue and profitability?

McDonald's definitely picks the later.

If one eats at McDonald's, the food is delivered on tray with brightly colored tray liner promoting McDonald's products. Although McDonald's changes tray liner regularly, it basically delivers the same kind of message: that Mcdonald's wants more business from the soon-to-be "Super Size Me".

Since the message is mostly irrelevant, people seldom pay attention to the liner.

Below promotional message was printed on the tray liner on 18 August 2006.

"Want to know more about nutritional values? Please turn overleaf!

Bacon and Egg Twisty Pasta Breakfast Meal $19.50

Kick start your day with the new pasta breakfast. With twisty pasta, fresh grade A eggs from the USA and tasty Canadian bacon, you'll feel so good and energied that moreover will never be ordinary again. Together with hot chicken broth, diced tomatoes, shredded cabbage, carrots, corns and other greens, this breakfast is the perfect start to a perfect day!"

Who really cares about the marketing message of another junk? Consumers are definitely more concerned about the nutritional values than products which may produce another "Super Size Me".

However, if consumers want to learn more about the nutrition information, the process for obtaining such information is not user friendly. The most relevant information is usually printed on the back of the tray liner. Food has to be either put away or thrown away from the tray in order to flip the sheet and read the message. The whole exercise is simply inconvenient. It is also not environmental friendly to print countless sheets which have no value to consumers. Instead of removing another tree and generate more rubbish, McDonald's should supply either dispensible tray or tray without sheet.

Tray liner is not an effective medium to promote anything. It won't encourage cross selling, up selling, and repeat purchase. It doesn't have any value at all. If it is supposed to have value, its value will never be realized.

Tray liner is just one of the many touchpoints McDonald's should have optimized in order to produce positive experience, but not junk.

31 August 2006

Give Up?

There are times when people work very hard but get nothing in return. Nothing goes wrong throughout the process, and touchpoint experience is consistently positive. What then is the problem? Doesn't positive touchpoint experience ensure positive result?

Xun Zi says there are three critical success factors: heaven (right time), earth (right place), and human (right people). "If you gain timeliness from heaven, favorable geographical position on earth, and the support of people, the source of revenue could gush out like spring water, could be running high like river and sea, and the property could enhance like mountains. If you lose timeliness from the top, favorable geographical position from the bottom and the support of people from the middle, people must be subjected to all kinds of sufferings like burns and scorches."

However, great result does not come even when heaven offers opportunity, earth supplies resources, and people working together in harmony.

That's life, and it's unfair. Nobody's at fault for not delivering result. Everything rolls out according to plan, but it just doesn't work out. Although it s a disaster when there is no payoff after tremendous efforts have been made, it happens all the time. One could keep mourning forever, but it won't change anything.

If people consistently delivering positive touchpoint experience do not get the appreciation they deserve, why keep trying to please others? It just isn't rational and mimimizes return on investment (ROI). Giving up seems to be the obvious choice.

But, please adopt a wait-and-see attitude. Focus not on the short run but the long run. Save the best for last. Efforts will ultimately pay off.

May the best of your past be the worst of your future!

18 August 2006


"Quit now, you'll never make it. If you disregard this advice, you'll be halfway there." David Zucker

It's time for me to call it quits. 205 blogs since 24 October 2004. Does that mean anything to anyone? I don't think so. Touchpoint eXperience Management is nothing after all these years of development. But why TXM cannot even be something if CRM, ERP, SCM, and BI can almost be everything?

I'll take a long rest now, and end with an email from St James' Settlement (SJS). To learn more about SJS, please visit http://www.sjs.org.hk/

RE: Thank-You Note - St. James' Settlement

Dear Alfred

Thank you very much for your encouragement. I appreciate much. Below is my reply. Thank you very much.

Best Regards

Daryl Choy

----Original Message Follows----
Subject: RE: Thank-You Note - St. James' Settlement
Date: Mon, 6 Feb 2006 11:34:11 +0800

Dear Daryl,

Many great thinkers using their whole life to create only one fundamental concept, like a little tree growing in an fast growth forest. You should be the little tree while the root is not deep enough and the structure is not complete to compete with others. If you want it a weapon to earn a living, you do not have the backup in the acadamic and commerial world.

Daryl Choy: I agree, and I'm working hard to strengthen my connections in both worlds. I just joined PCCW as a Training Consultant, and I have partnered with a local software company in Hong Kong to co-develop the application. As said, I always want support from others to help develop the concept together, but Hongkongers are definitely too realistic and not innovative.

Are you sure touch point is a great theory in your life?

Daryl Choy: Yes, Alfred. I've been working on it alone for 5 years now. As I see it, touchpoint is the root of everything; and when touchpoint is quantified, it becomes manageable because what gets measured gets managed.

I do believe it is a great point to help. However, I do believe they have many grey area or weakness.

Daryl Choy: Alfred, are you interested to co-develop this concept with me? You have been in the industry for a long time, and with your support and guidance, I strongly believe that the TXM concept will be more solid and marketable.

How to make it applicable to the serious problem is their market value, especially where you have to make the tree grow.

Daryl Choy: This is very unfair indeed. Look at CRM. Is it useful, effective, or even innovative? Is managing the customer relationship really something new? I don't think so. But what is the impact of CRM on the business world? Everyone thinks it is the solution. Why is that? Just because it is from the West!?

Hong Kong is not a good area to develop the idea. We just follow the main trend of the western great thinking.

Daryl Choy: I agree with you again, Alfred. Basically, we follow whatever comes from the Western world, even if it is not great at all. Why?

How many great thinkers in the consultancy world in Hong Kong have their own theory? How you can create a market for your theory?

Daryl Choy: As said, Hongkongers are not creative, and we are not trained to be creative. We are mostly copycat. I'll try to promote my idea through publication and website.

I agree with you that without name or wings,the bird will not fly. Then find the shortest route to earn the name, your effort will not be wasted. Hope you can get the success you wish. John is a man in the market who in charge the buy and sell and have good sense of the existing market. His question are touch and I think you have to spend time to re-consider it.

Daryl Choy: Thank you, Alfred. Look forward to hearing from you soon. Take care.


12 August 2006


"If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his language, that goes to his heart." Nelson Mandela

"Then" is "if's" partner. They always go hand in hand, but then, so what? "If" can survive alone without "then", and "then" can flirt with any other words. Loyalty? Not a chance! Same happens to "Although" and "but". "Although" doesn't need "but", but people always put them together. Happy relationship? Could be, but definitely under a lot of pressure.

When people face dilemma, "if" provides direction by helping them perform cost-benefit analysis. If they do this, then what's next. If that, then what's what?

Undoubtedly, "if" is a very powerful word. It's most used in competition, particularly chess. If I make that move, how's the opponent going to react? If I don't make that move, will the opponent take advantage? Although "if" doesn't help people solve everything, it at least prevents people from taking immediate action, and prompt people to think twice before taking any action. People using "ifs" may make effective decision but definitely not efficient.

Nothing gets done when there are too many "ifs". The more one knows, the less one delivers. There is always a strong gap between knowing and doing. Time is either spent worrying about the risk, or learning junk. Everyone has limited brain cells and time. Instead of wasting energy on irrelevant items, people should focus on things that are relevant to success. That's actually the shortcut to success. It's really funny that it's people themselves who always keep picking the most difficult and longest path to success. Only if they know what to focus, will they realize that the success they've been longing for is originally within reach.

"If" gives false hope. If I were you, then I'd do this and that. Fact is, each individual is a single entity. Nobody can ever be

If... if there were no "ifs", people won't have dreams and would do things that please themselves rather than "if".

11 August 2006

Never Mind

"True love doesn't come to you, it has to be inside you." Julia Roberts

People won't let go, either because they don't want to or because they don't know how to. Peope only care about themselves without the ability to put themselves into others' shoes. They are blind to others, but they see clearly for themselves.

People who envy others' achievement will always give negative touchpoint experience to others. They pretend that they are happy for others' positive results but deep inside they think otherwise. They just can't accept that they are inferior than others, and that others are better than themselves. Their behavior is a reflection of immaturity.

Some people are born with a silver spoon in their mouth. Others are too smart to be true. The world is unfair. Nothing runs smooth. Setback is just a part of life. It's a fact that nobody should deny but should instead learn to accept. Someone has to be superior and other inferior. If everybody is the same, then there is no relativity, no comparison, and no competition. What will the world be like when everything equals everything? Nothing, and change is finally constant.

Why bother with negative touchpoint experience then?

Never mind the negative experience if it is delivered when nobody has done anything wrong. That's going to be nothing in the end, for it doesn't bother anyone but the one who forever minds every insignificant detail.

Take life easy, pal.

10 August 2006


"People are afraid of themselves, of their own reality; their feelings most of all. People talk about how great love is, but that's bullshit. Love hurts. Feelings are disturbing. People are taught that pain is evil and dangerous. How can they deal with love if they're afraid to feel? Pain is meant to wake us up. People try to hide their pain. But they're wrong. Pain is something to carry, like a radio. You feel your strength in the experience of pain. It's all in how you carry it. That's what matters. Pain is a feeling. Your feelings are a part of you. Your own reality. If you feel ashamed of them, and hide them, you're letting society destroy your reality. You should stand up for your right to feel your pain." Jim Morrison

Rubbish is defined as unwanted waste. There are basically two kinds of rubbish: tangible and intangible. The amount of tangible rubbish keeps rising and contaminating the world. Even with the introduction of 4R (Refuse, Reduce, Reuse and Recycle), the situation stays the same, if not worsening. However, tangible waste can at least be managed, because it is measurable. Alert system can be developed to control the amount of tangible waste being produced every day.

People taking an "easy come, easy go" attitude always live a "throwaway" lifestyle. They don't cherish the things they have, and they don't have to. Everything is dispensible at any time at will or whim. It is an interesting fact that most tangible rubbish is produced by the developed countries, which accounts for only 5% of the world's population. The so-called better educated people living in the developed countries are the murderers of the world, but they are not sentenced to death.

Intangible waste is bullshit, or nonsense. Nobody can touch it, but everybody can feel it. Bullshit is basically created 24x7. As long as the deliverable has no value and thus irrelevant, that's bullshit! Its impact could be even more devastating than that of tangible. Nonsense isn't measurable, and is beyond everyone's control.

"I love you" is the most frequently used bullshit. Words really mean nothing. Action speaks louder than words. Everything people say is bullshit if it does not come with action. Putting words into actions is the true test of a person's character. Regrettably, people are becoming more and more irresponsible for everything said, and keep creating negative people experience.

09 August 2006


"Reach for the moon, because if you don't make it you'll land among the stars."

Every month there is one Full Moon, or to be more exact, the full moon appears once every 29.53 days. When there are two Full Moons in a month, which occurs, on average, every 2.7 years, the second one is called a "Blue Moon". Because this happens rarely, it has resulted in the expression "once in a Blue Moon."

There are 8 phases of the Moon: New Moon, Waxing Crescent, First Quarter, Waxing Gibbous, Full Moon, Waning Gibbous, Last Quarter, and Waning Crescent. This cycle is also known as lunation, but who really cares. There is always day and night. It is too common to be noticed. The Mid-Autumn Festival which celebrates abundance and family togetherness falls on the 15th day of the eighth lunar month of the Chinese calendar. It's also a Full Moon, but this Full Moon is a lot different from the rest of the 11 Full Moons.

The deliverable actually is exactly the same, but the Full Moon in the eighth lunar month seems to be totally different. Common sense is not so common. The uncommon is all about information packaging.

Make a wish upon the next Blue Moon, and may it be granted.

08 August 2006


"Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try Again. Fail again. Fail better." Samuel Beckett

Italy has won the 2006 World Cup. It's definitely a great news to those who for years stay loyal to and haven't yet lost faith in Italy. What's more exciting than a dream finally come true?

Italy last tasted the happiness for the championship on World Cup 24 years ago. During the years, the best result for Italy was second, in 1994.

Once won, it's really difficult to accept failure and the inability not to win again. Fact is, winners are more difficult to accept
failure than those who don't even understand what competition is all about. They just resist to lose.

The experience of winning is so great that people who have won before always want to win again. They simply see the next winning as a challenge. They never stop challenging themselves until nobody dares to challenge them. They prove their existence value by winning. If they fail the first challenge, they'll work harder to make sure that they'll beat the competition the next time. If they still fail the second time, they'll keep on trying. But what if they forever fail without any chance of winning again, should they still persist?

While winning strengthens confidence, losing destroys. It requires enormous courage and confidence not to give up, then stand up, and to believe in their own belief.

Although Italy may not be everyone's favorite, its attitude to win is worth learning. Anything can change in two decades.

ITALY also stands for I Truly Always Love You.

How great if the love one has for the other is true and lasting? However, true love is rare nowadays, and break-up is not uncommon in every relationship. The divorce rate in Hong Kong is climbing, so is elsewhere in the world, particularly US.

Freedom to choose results in negative experience in the end. Love is blind anyway, so why not go back to basics, and try blind date?

Italy, ITALY.

07 August 2006


"This is not remarkable, for, as we know, reality is not a function of the event as event, but of the relationship of that event to past, and future, events. We seem here to have a paradox: that the reality of an event, which is not real in itself, arises from the other events which, likewise, in themselves are not real. But this only affirms what we must affirm: that direction is all. And only as we realize this do we live, for our own identity is dependent upon this principal." Robert Penn Warren

What is a paradox? A paradox is a situation where the more one does, the less one gets.

Paradox puts people in a Catch-22 situation. Life is full of paradox. The most common one is related to love. The more one falls in love with another person, the more pain that person gets due to temporary separation. Should the person continue to love?

Love is blind and irrational. It has no right or wrong. The course of true love never did run smooth, and calculated love is not true love. Everything can be expressed in the form of formula, but no formula works for love.

Paradox gives neutral touchpoint experience most of the time, leaving people in a confused state. Although everyone procrastinates to some extent, confusion delays decision-making process significantly. If a decision has to be made, it has to be made decisively. Hesitation leads everyone nowhere. Deliverable will be forever pending, and resulted in neutral deliverable experience but negative people experience.

How to handle paradox?

It's all about the ability to see things through, and the willingness to let go of things that can't be seen through.

Toss a coin, and let fate decide. It's really meaningless trying to look through things that even X-ray can't get inside. After all, life is nothing but a 'minus' sign, a sign that is shown on the headstone giving information on one's lifespan.

Rest in peace.

06 August 2006

Chris Patten

"Junk is the ultimate merchandise. The junk merchant does not sell his product to the consumer, he sells the consumer to the product. He does not improve and simplify his merchandise, he degrades and simplifies the client." William S Burroughs

Chris Patten is the last British governor of Hong Kong. What did he bring to Hong Kong after years of "serving" his people? People may not be able to recall any, either because he seldom walked the talk, or because he's not a great governor at all. However, almost everyone can relate Fat Pang, Patten's nickname, to egg tart.

Exactly what is the relationship between politics and egg tart, a popular Chinese pastry?

Politics is about making and doing shows. Any artist can do a great job. Ronald Reagan and Arnold Schwarzenegger are some good examples. Politicans who are poor actors have difficulties winning their people's hearts. People are shallow and too lazy to think, so what they see is what they get. As long as the show is entertaining, they'll just love it. Politics does nothing to help improve the economy's performance, but can do everything to hinder economic growth. But how is politics related to food?

Snacks are nothing but junk foods. Junk refers to things with almost zero value. It is usually created and developed with no specific meaningful objective in the first place, which further explains why the deliverable is junk. Another reason is that the deliverable is not of relevance to the receiver. When the deliverable is not relevant, it simply has no value even though it may possess enormous economic importance. That's junk.

Both unrelated things may have one thing in common: The Ultimate Merchandise!

The poor owner of Tai Cheong Bakery Mr Au Yeung never stops taking the opportunity to shine shoes in the hope of getting market attention, and Patten never stops trying to milk his last-dime from the old colony.

Mr Au Yeung may have adopted a wrong marketing strategy. Patten is not a food critics, and his taste doesn't represent the taste of others. After all, he is a westerner, and has different taste buds. It's pathetic that Fat Pang didn't have any egg tarts during his recent visit to promote his books Not Quite the Diplomat because he was "too fat".

05 August 2006


"The holiest of all holidays are those kept by ourselves in silence and apart; the secret anniversaries of the heart." Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

In database marketing, frequency is one of the three core variables. The other twos are recency and monetary, together known as RFM.

RFM analysis helps marketers segment market, and develop effective marketing strategies which maximize ROI, or return on investment. In Handbook of Market Segmentation, Art Weinstein defines "recency as the last service encounter or transaction; frequency assesses how often these customer contact / company experiences occur; and monetary value probes the amount that is spent, invested, or commited by customers for the firm's products and services."

Customers with the highest RFM worth the most attention, where those with the lowest require either win-back or defective strategy to move them up or remove them from the tier.

Among the three variables, F is the most important. Although M gives solid results, which provide the nutrition to survive, without F, or the heartbeat, nutrition is meaningless.

Same applies to touchpoint. The more frequent the touchpoint, the better the relationship.

But, is that a fact?

Nothing lasts if the frequency is high but the chain is filled with negative touchpoint experience. The relationship may seem promising during the initial stage, but it will eventually fail. If the frequency is low but with positive experience, it stands the test of time.

The next factor, or actually the critical success factor, is experience.

03 August 2006


03 August 2006. Hong Kong. Rained like cats and dogs. Many trees down. Streets blocked. Typhoon signal no 3 was hoisted.

Hong Kong Observatory (HKO) maintained typhoon signal number 3 although typhoon Prapiroon has caused chaos on the roads. The reason of HKO's decision was that the typhoon signal is determined by the average wind speed among districts, but not by individual district. HKO will not take into account the fact that the wind speed of some districts has already fulfilled the requirement of number 8 signal. People who were in districts which had gale force wind, or equivalent to number 8 signal, were told that it was still only strong wind, or number 3 signal. It's like telling them they're safe but in fact there's war going on. This is not only negative information experience, but also bad and irresponsible judgment. Did they not predict the wind speed and evaluate the consequences? Did they not care lives at all?

There were reports on fallen trees caused by Prapiroon. People walking on the street were knocked off by flying rubbish bins. Although there's no serious injury, people in the danger zone might have already suffered if they had put their faith in HKO.

Being a governmental organization, it should protect every resident from any possible harm. Safety of each citizen should be top priority and of utmost concern. Who cares about how the signal is being determined? People only believe in their instinct when they encounter crisis. HKO should further understand that its decision can cost lives. Accurate information should be given to everyone for his or her reference, but definitely not the guesstimate.

This is not the first time that HKO made bad judgments, which had caused significant inconvenience and damages to the residents of Hong Kong. HKO just never learns from experience, and it never will.

There is this rumor that HKO won't hoist number 8 signal during workdays and office hours, because this will affect the stock market operations. When number 8 is hoisted, it is just like another holiday. Everyone in the work force can call the day off. Students return home. Everything just shuts down. Nobody can blame anyone for the slackness.

A fact is a fact. HKO has no right to withhold true information. No excuses allowed. Which is more important? Daily stock turnover of HK$15 billion, or people's lives?

Only HKO knows!

To learn more about what's on the mind of HKO, please visit http://www.hko.gov.hk/

02 August 2006


What is a queue? It's a long line of people standing one behind the other waiting for something.

Chinese are bad at queueing up. They simply don't have the concept nor patience to wait for basically anything. They show no respect for others but just care for themselves. They may not even understand why they have to wait for the things they want. They want everything fast. Everything has to be made available when it is requested. No allowance or buffer is given. Every request is under tight deadline and severe time constraint. Chinese are not ashamed of such selfishness. Instead, they are proud of winning, even unethically. After all, people only care about short-term gain but not long-term. People are often short-sighted.

To the Chinese, losers are those who don't have the ability to occupy themselves the first position in the queue and let go of obvious opportunity. True. There's nothing wrong to grap every opportunity, particularly an opportunity is rare nowadays. However, nobody can ever guarantee that by being first in the queue will bring success.

Do first-movers always have all the advantages? Not necessarily. It's not a must.

People who don't have the habit of queueing up definitely deliver negative touchpoint experience to others. People who queue in the wrong line without knowing, but are later informed by the one behind when the line is moving, and are further requested to queue up again receive negative touchpoint experience.

Queueing is all about people touchpoint experience.

Queueing is similar to fishing. Positive fishing experience requires patience. Skills of course count! Queueing is not an enjoyable experience. One sees the destination, but still has to wait to reach it. Drilling on an unhappy issues won't bring happiness. Patience helps. Instead of asking why the wait, it brings peace of mind by shifting the focus to paying attention to things around.


The time now is 0012. According to the battery meter of my PowerBook, the battery will run out 39 minutes later. I'll try to finish this blog before the battery completely dies out.

If you are a loyal reader of my blog, you'd realize that basically I try to write a blog every day. Each blog is related to Touchpoint eXperience Management. Writing is already difficult, and keeping one per day is more difficult. This is persistence, which I've been trying to develop through this blog.

The time now is 0017. 34 minutes later, the battery will run out...


The time now is 0022. 31 minutes later, the batter will run out...

From 0017 to 0022, I was reviewing the first paragraph of this blog, and rewrote the content.

The time now is 0025. I only have 27 minutes left...


Do you care about my writing progress? Are you interested at all in how I come up with each blog? This may be the most irrelevant blog I've ever written, but this is actually my thinking process. It's not organized, and most of the time I do multi-task. I was watching TV while trying to finish this blog.

How do you feel now? There is simply nothing in this blog, right?

The message of this blog is, if you like this blog, then I just deliver you a positive touchpoint experience. Else, negative. However, I believe you simply have no idea what the message of this blog is, and you don't really care about anything, then friend, you have just had a neutral touchpoint experience in the past few minutes.

The time now is 0032...

Are you sleepy? Let's rest early.

Thank you for reading this blog.

Good night. Sweet dreams.

01 August 2006


"Success comes from taking the initiative and following up... persisting... eloquently expressing the depth of your love. What simple action could you take today to produce a new momentum toward success in your life?" Anthony Robbins

Momentum is about consistency. Without consistency, it is almost impossible to maintain momentum. Without momentum, everything gradually loses its drive, and ultimately results in negative touchpoint experience.

Although curiosity also helps maintain momentum, people simply don't have the patience to repeat the questions and answers process. They want immediate straight relevant answer for each question asked. Once curiosity is gone, it's gone until people's desire to know the unknown returns again.

People are usually more committed during the initial stage because they know nothing about the environment. They will do their best in order to win great first impression and thus create positive touchpoint experience . When the actual deliverable matches expectations, and they receive recognition for a job well done, they'll have the usual tendency to make excuses and begin to either slack off or even take rest.

After all, people are only animals with some wisdom. Just like any other animals, they have no or little self-control. Even if they have self-control, they are always tempted to let go. They'll perform best under scrutiny. Momentum disappears when people are content with what they already have.

However, results alone only determine deliverable experience. To truly acheive touchpoint experience excellence, all touchpoints, or people, information, and deliverable, have to provide positive touchpoint experience.

In order to keep momentum, follow up and never give up.

31 July 2006


"Discussion is an exchange of knowledge; an argument an exchange of ignorance." Robert Quillen

Ignorance is not foolish, but foolish encourages people not to remain ignorance. People don't want to be seen as incompetent idiots, because they don't want to be isolated. Nobody like to be friends with fools. They work hard in order not to be labeled as fools. Although being smart always helps, high IQ, or Intelligence Quotient, can lead people to become complacent, which will sooner or later lead to self-destruction.

Humble perhaps is the key to being wise. People who think they know everything won't listen and learn, and will ultimately become ignorance. Humble helps people "stay hungry, stay foolish", an idea delivered by Steve Jobs, CEO of Apple, to 2005 graduates of Stanford Univeristy.

Self-aware ignorance does not breed ignornace but wisdom.

For the complete article of "stay hungry, stay foolish", please visit http://news-service.stanford.edu/news/2005/june15/jobs-061505.

Ignorance is bliss.

29 July 2006

Try My Best

Deliverable has to be produced whenever a task is assigned. There are basically three steps to deliver results: Planning, Execution, and Evaluation.

For planning, it is not only to define the actions to be taken from start to completion but also to identify potential risks. Prevention is better than cure. For execution, it is all about people management and the ability to manage unexpected changes. For evaluation, it is to show appreciation and learn from mistakes in order to prevent recurrence of the same problem. Efforts should be made to strengthen strengths and weaken weaknesses for sustainable improvement.

People like to say they'll try the best, and expect others to appreciate. Fact is, "try the best" is only the basic requirment. If the task is not performed with the "CDE" attitude, or commitment, drive and enthusiasm, the results are destined to be doomed.

However, it is always more important to "try the best" during execution than after evaluation.

Try the best during execution helps ensure excellent results. After? Who cares! Everybody suffers from the negative result already.

28 July 2006


ICQ is short for "I seek you", and it's been available to the online community since November 1996.

ICQ makes the world a smaller place by providing a platform for people around the globe to do online chatting. Chatting means informal conversation. Since it's informal by default, it's not usual to communicate formal messages via ICQ. However, people sometimes use ICQ to do online dating. Shouldn't love be treated seriously? Why people communicate love in an informal way?

An interesting thing is that there is really true love in the cyberworld. People do get married to others they met online. There is no personal interaction, or human touch, online. Everything is virtual, and on the mind. How could that be possible?

Online chatting delivers the experience that will leave people not knowing what to expect next.

Experience rules!

27 July 2006

Key Ring

Key ring is a small chain used to link together a number of keys.

Without key ring, everything will be in a mess. Keys are everywhere, but it gets everyone nowhere. People may be lost, and will even have difficulties finding the right key for the key hole. Although key ring is only an accessory, it helps people organize better and shorten search time. Key ring is indeed a valuable tool, but nobody really cares. People are so used to the existence of key ring, and simply take it for granted. They have too many things to worry, and being organized is simply not their priority in life.

Key ring is a small detail, and it is like customer service.

Customer service is about details. Excelling at every touchpoint, or the detail, is the key to achieving Touchpoint eXperience Excellence (TXE), but how detail should be the details?

Small critical detail actually requires the highest magnification, so it becomes the focus and won't be neglected.

Not all details are important, but critical ones deserve the most attention, like key ring. Instead of getting everything right, it is more effective to excel at critical details.

26 July 2006


No news is good news? It depends. Sometimes it's better to have some good news than no news. If the news is about an improvement, and that the improvement benefits everyone, why should anyone still want no news? But if the news is about acts of God, then no news is truly good news.

It is also impossible to have no news. People are nosy, and that becomes a demand. So long as there is demand, there will be supply. Reporters have to create not only good news but regrettably also bad news. The question is, what do the nosy readers want first? Good news, or bad news? This is like asking the customary, time-honored question, "Is the glass half empty or half full?"

Seeing the glass as half empty means the person is a pessimist, because that person dwells on the lack in his or her life. Seeing it as half full means the person is optimistic, because that person focus on the good things in life. Everyone knows the metaphor, so in order to be seen as an optimist, even though the person is in fact a pessimist, he or she will choose half full and describe himself or herself as an optimist.

How about the sequence of good and bad news? Is it another metaphor for life? Who cares, when everyone knows how to be a great pretender?

Here comes a joke on good news and bad news. A man gets a telephone call from a doctor. The doctor says: "About this medical test I did on you, I have some good news and some bad news." The man asks for the good news first: "The good news is that you have 24 hours to live," says the doctor. The man, incredulously: "If that is the good news, then what is the bad news??" "I couldn't reach you on the phone yesterday."

In conclusion, no bad news is good news.

25 July 2006


"Any change, even a change for the better, is always accompanied by drawbacks and discomforts." Arnold Bennett

Although everyone unwillingly accepts that the only constant is change, nobody really willingly accepts change. It is useless and meaningless trying to escape from change, because change is simply inevitable. Everything just keeps changing, and it won't stop changing until the judgment day, or the deadline. Change is about progress. The direction can be forward or backward, but there is always a movement involved.

It is easier to accept if the change is for the better. It is just a matter of time and adaptability. If the change is for the worse, then nobody will accept but resist. Although time heals, it won't heal all. Why should one have to accept something worse than before?

The best way for managing change is to set zero expectation and have non-zero flexibility. Although positive experience is achieved when value of actual deliverable exceeds that of expected, zero expecation guarantees expectations will always be met. Flexibility facilitates change of expectations, which then makes zero expectation possible.

Treat change as tide: live with it but never against. After all, all changes come from the same origin, and that origin is attitude.

Hope for the best, prepare for the worst.

Good luck!

Thank You

“God gave you a gift of 86,400 seconds today. Have you used one to say thank you?" William Arthur Ward

People take everything for granted.

The people have to be right. The information has to be right. The deliverables have to be right. If nothing is right, they either complain or simply walk away and never return. The first reaction is always to blame, but not to understand why things go wrong. It seems that spending time gaining a better understanding of imperfect is a sin. It is indeed ridiculous not to first appreciate the efforts spent on trying to get things right, but just to blame on the imperfect results!

Everyone wants perfect and shies away from imperfect. What's wrong with imperfect? If everything is perfect, then perfect doesn't really exist. Fact is, imperfect makes perfect possible.

It is easy to show appreciation for perfect results but not for imperfect ones. However, it is easy to say thank you from the head, but difficult to say it from the heart. Sorry may be the hardest word, but thank you the most difficult. Excesssive sorry abuse kindness, and excessive thank you loses its meaning. Sorry is used when things go wrong, turning negative into positive. Thank you is used when things go right, trying to acknowledge efforts and appreciate results.

Just one second can change everything.

Thank you, from the bottom of my heart.

23 July 2006


Tires are the only contact between a vehicle and the road. However, people seldom pay special attention to tire condition unless they are professional and experienced drivers. Some touchpoints are like tires. They are not obvious but have critical and significant power to affect results.

I had this tire blowout experience lately. When I was on my way to a dinner gathering, the front tire suddenly deflated rapidly. The car started to lose its balance, and since this was my first time, I had no idea how to deal with the situation. I wasn't nervous because the worst scenario was death which I don't care about much. After all, everyone has a deadline, and there is no exception for me. Not far away there was a carpark. I immediately pulled the car over, and took a taxi instead to the destination.

The next day my friend referred me to a tire maintenance center. Since he's a car expert, I visited the center without a second thought. That's the power of grapevine, or word of mouth. When I reached the center, the technician provided bad services, not to mention about the price premium for nothing. I couldn't decide if I should hire the deliverable because I knew for sure I could get the same quality of tire at a cheaper price elsewhere, but I needed to check the source and as a result incurred further transaction costs. Were that extra transaction costs worthwhile, given I should replace the bursted tire asap? My decision was pending, but the clock was also ticking...

Nobody is dumb enough to hire the exact same product at a higher cost. In order to enjoy positive experience, I opted for the next best alternative, which was not my friend's referral. Not only was the tire replaced but the vehicle was also inspected for problems. Some were fixed for better performance and security reasons at competitive cost.

When there is word of mouth, it still does not guarantee anything. Experience rules at the final point of decision.

22 July 2006

Please leave a message after the beep...

Everyone is always busy at something. It's almost impossible to successfully reach the person the first time. There are only two options when the person is not available: leave a message or just hang up.

If one leaves a message, there is no guarantee that he or she will return the call. Even if the person returns the call, nobody knows when. This unknown will definitely affect the deliverable quality. If the sender doesn't leave a message, then the message will be on hold forever. The receiver doesn't even know there is a message pending. No deliverable will ever be produced. Even if the receiver answers the call, he or she may not be able to immediately provide solutions. Nothing will be delivered if wrong things are done at the wrong time at the wrong place by the wrong person.

It is always better to leave a message than do nothing if a touchpoint chain is to be continued.

Developing a touchpoint chain requires non-stop communications. If there is discontinuity, it's difficult to reactivate everything again.

21 July 2006


Everyone has to communicate in order to survive. If the person is deaf, there is fingerspelling to help the deaf reach out beyond their borders. If blind, there is Braille system and Moon system to help them read. When there is a will, there is a way. Nobody won't be able to communicate with others unless the person intentionally isolates himself or herself from the world.

Different generations use different tools to communicate. 40s use phone and email. 30s-40s use IM in addition to phone and email. For 30s or younger, they use SMS, IM, phone and email. SMS or Short Messaging Service has become a common communication channel, and so is IM or Instant Messaging for the younger generation.

However, SMS and email are not real time communications but rather wait-and-see. The receiver can either think twice before replying, or simply ignore without replying. Although both methods give more time for both the sender and the receiver to come up with the perfect message, it may not necessarily generate positive touchpoint experience, particularly SMS.

In Hong Kong, phone, email and IM are basically free communications. For phone, the user pays a monthly flat charge, and then he or she can make unlimited local phone calls. Nobody has to worry about the phone quota. For email and IM, what the user needs is a PC and IM software, which can be downloaded for free online. But for SMS, besides the monthly charge for a fixed number of Intra SMS, the user has to incur costs for additional SMS above the quota, and also costs of each Inter SMS. SMS is more expensive when compared with other communication channels.

Interestingly enough, some people prefer to send SMS rather than to call. This is not rational. Making a phone call basically is free of charge, but sending a SMS is charged on a pay-per-use basis. Why people prefer a deliverable that costs money to another deliverable which delivers the same result but at zero cost?

It is all about the experience of waiting to know...

20 July 2006

Coin Toss

Decision making is both art and science.

It is an art because no decision is absolutely right or wrong. A bad decision may seem bad initially, but something can always be learned from a mistake. A good decision promises positive results, but it also encourages the decision maker to be a prisoner of success.

It is a science because there are many methods to make a decision. Decision can be made based on research such as Cost-Benefit Analysis, or plain gut feelings, such as coin toss. Please visit http://www.43folders.com/2005/09/01/eight-tools-for-streamlined-decision-making/ for more decision making methods.

When to adopt which is the question.

Making a decision is actually about eliminating choices. Wants are unlimited but resources aren't. As a result, people have to make choices and incur opportunity costs. The final choice is in fact the decision. All decision involves not only opportunity costs but also selection costs. Opportunity costs are the costs incurred after the decision is made, where selection costs during decision making. However, who really cares about the selection and opportunity costs? Just go with heart, and leave the rest to God.

Every day everyone needs to make at least a decision.

One can choose to bounce out of bed and get up when the alarm rings the first time, the second time, or simply just stay in bed no matter how many times the alarm rings. Nobody is going to perform a Cost-Benefit Analysis to decide when to get up, because it's not justified. But why not? Simply because the person is too tired to try to make a decision is not an excuse that no analysis should be performed for such an activity.

If one gets up late, he or she may either be late for school or work. Lateness hurts everyone because time is wasted on nothing. The consequence of getting up late can be significant.

But again, who cares!?

Just throw the coin in the air and let random decide everything.

If coin is not available at the point of decision making, try this.


19 July 2006


What is credibility?

Credibility is the quality or power of inspiring belief. (http://www.m-w.com)

Why is credibility important?

Credibility removes barriers and reinforces trust. Barriers hinder advancement, a negative touchpoint experience. Trust smooths out anxiety and obstacles, a positive touchpoint experience.

How to build credibility?

"The more you are willing to accept responsibility for your actions, the more credibility you will have." Brian Koslow

Accepting responsibility for actions is one thing. Delivering results is another. Credibility is built when results are delivered, but definitely not when one is a yes man! Unquestioning obedience is an act of stupidity.

"Getting started, keeping going, getting started again - in art and in life, it seems to me this is the essential rhythm not only of achievement but of survival, the ground of convinced action, the basis of self-esteem and the guarantee of credibility in your lives, credibility to yourselves as well as to others." Seamus Heaney

Credibility is also achieved when there is consistency of results. Everyone is tempted to deviate from the norm due to changes in environment. However, nobody understands that all changes come from the same origin. Only those who maintain and improve quality of deliverables consistently will earn credibility.

"You cannot lie ever, because a lie destroys the credibility of the product, and credibility is more important than anything. Credibility's even more important than clarity." Frank Luntz

Although lying is a sin, and should not be encouraged, it is also an art. A good lie that draws a smile can cover up everything harmful and destructive, but a bad lie that draws a tear reveals the brutal truth.

When positive experience is delivered at every touchpoint, credibility is built. The question is, how many touchpoints are there?

18 July 2006


Sentence One: "I'm sorry, but I think you are wrong. Please redo."

Sentence Two: "It is not a perfect solution, but it's acceptable. Let's go ahead."

What is the difference between these two sentences?

Sentence One starts out positively, but ends negatively. Sorry is meaningless as long as the receiver does not receive recognition for a completed task, and even so is requested to do the same task again in the hope of improvement. Although the process is not destructive, the result is. This leads to negative touchpoint experience.

Sentence Two starts out negatively, but ends positively. Imperfect is not a sin. After all, nothing is perfect, and everyone is imperfect. That's why perfect is so priceless. Once this brutal fact is understood and accepted, then imperfect is really nothing. Imperfect encourages hesitation, hesitation creates inertia, inertia generates no results. Sometimes it is better to just do it than talk without any action. Positive touchpoint experience is about action that gets results.

"But" is a very interesting yet powerful word. If used correctly, it turns negative positive; else, it ruins everything.

Positive touchpoint experience comes with a positive but, a but with positive ending. People remember last best.

17 July 2006


Trust is founded on commitment, and is the foundation of positive relationship. Without trust, it is almost impossible to build Touchpoint eXperience Excellence (TXE).

Trust is never given but earned. Nobody can take trust for granted, and it is definitely not a free lunch. Trust takes forever to build, but just one moment to break. If life is unfair, then trust is definitely more unfair than life. When something is done wrong in life, it can't be fixed, and there is no point of return. That's just it. It's no use crying over split milk, and it's not worth spending time redoing everything, because the result is simply irreversible. Instead of wasting time asking why, it's better not to look back but start all over again.

When trust is lost, it can be rebuilt. However, rebuilt trust is never the same as before. It's really naive to believe that rebuilt trust can go back to the same level as in day one. Efforts spent on rebuilding trust definitely won't yield the expected return. It's therefore important not to lose trust in the first place. Same applies to mistakes. Mistakes can be forgiven but never be fully forgotten.

Every touchpoint is an opportunity to build trust, and that missteps can quickly break trust.

What are missteps? Actions that do nobody good but only benefit oneself are definitely false steps. Actions that benefit not only oneself but also everyone concerned are correct steps.

How to deliver correct steps? Always execute the Golden Rule: "Do unto others as you would have others do unto you."

Never be a spring! When one is being corrected, it is like a compressed spring. He or she will stay good for a while, but without commitment to right the wrong, the spring will sooner or later return to its original shape, or the extended spring.

Trust this? http://home.earthlink.net/~truthfaith/truthfaith.html

16 July 2006

Blind Spot

Drivers seldom turn their head briefly to check blind spot. They just glance in the rear-view mirror, believing that it is an accurate reflection of reality. If there is no object shown in the rear-view mirror, they will go ahead to make the turn or change the lane. But is the rear-view mirror really reliable?

Most of the time, people are too lazy to dig out the truth. They rather listen to gossip which is almost available anytime anywhere at zero cost but not necessarily true than spend time researching for the fact. Without right or positive information, nobody is able to produce positive deliverable.

Although fact is brutal and gossip entertaining, truth stands the test of time. Time wears things down. Things erode, or wither, or decay, or die. Only truth endures. To see things clearly is actually to search for the fact.

Next time, turn head to check blind spot. Although seeing is believing, it really depends on how things are being perceived.

Safe driving!

15 July 2006


Everything is connected to everything else, which means that everything ultimately comes down to relevance. Relevance links everything together. If things are irrelevant, then nobody will bother to take a step further. Irrelevancy brings discontinuity, and relevance maintains momentum and sustains touchpoint chain.

Why purchase a book? A simple reason is to enrich knowledge. A special reason could be for collection only. Many people have the habit of buying books without ever reading one page, and they are not really bookworms. Bookworms read, and they do read. They have expectations on every book they buy. If there is no substance in the book, the deliverable does not meet expectation, and produces bad experience.

Relevance is just the starting point of a touchpoint chain, but it does not guarantee the chain existence thereafter. It's experience to build and sustain the touchpoint chain.

Bon voyage!

14 July 2006


In Hong Kong, ads on helping fatty get slim are all over the place. Ads exist in the form of outdoor ads, print ads, TV ads, and also internet banners. Celebrity with evident will also be used to strengthen the message. Regardless of the ad medium, they basically deliver the same message: stay beauty.

Why beauty is so important, not only for women but also men, basically for everyone?

The first 30 seconds decide almost everything. A stranger trying to win the audience should use the first 30 seconds effectively. Otherwise, it will take a lifetime to rebuild what could be built in less than a minute.

If the person looks handsome and nice, a good impression is formed on the spot and it's easier to break the ice. Actually, it's just like dating. Gorgeous women are easily attracted to men. And why? Because everyone chases after perfection. People usually judge a stranger by appearance first, or outer beauty, then by inner beauty, which takes more time to see inside the shell. They just don't have the patience to wait for the person to bring out the inner beauty. Outer beauty is more than enough.

The world is unfair, and it is created unfair by people. Fact is, inner beauty is more important, as it represents attitude. However, those with higher BQ, or Beauty Quotient, will always have an absolute advantage over those who have lower, for no solid reason. That advantage allows them to provide delivery of positive touchpoint experience without much efforts.

Outer beauty? How long does it last?

13 July 2006

Touchpoint eXperience Management @ 060713

"The real art of conversation is not only to say the right thing at the right place but to leave unsaid the wrong thing at the tempting moment." Dorothy Nevill

There are 2 environments - Internal Organization (i) and External Market (e). In each environment, there are 3 types of touchpoint - People, Information and Deliverables (PID). Each type of touchpoint produces 3 kinds of experience - Positive, Indifferent, Negative. In order to achieve Touchpoint eXperience Excellence (TXE), iPID have to have positive experience first in order to produce positive experience in ePID. ROI maximization is possible when TXE is achieved.

Without touchpoint, there is no opportunity for anyone to experience the experience. Without experience, it is impossible to determine whether subsequent touchpoint is possible. Touchpoint is therefore the foundation of basically everything, and it is necessary to ensure that once a relationship is formed, there is no discontinuity in the chain. Maintaining a chain of touchpoints will either strengthen or weaken the relationship, depending on the experience.

If the chain consists only of negative experience, it is better not to continue the chain. It can be argued that by maintaining the chain filled with negative experience, there is at least chance to turn negative experience into positive, but once the first impression is formed, it becomes really difficult to correct the impression. However, there are always two options: go, or no go. Besides giving up which should always be used only as a last resort, one can choose to navigate and pick a different course in order to bring new order in the chain.

4R is an evaluation tool to determine to start or continue a touchpoint, and it is an acronym for Relevance, Reaction, Return and Risk.

New Touchpoint - If there is no previous touchpoint experience, then the receiver will see if the touchpoint is relevant or not. If relevant, then the next step is to check intangible factors such as attitude of sender, content of information, and value of deliverable. If they remain positive, then the reciever will perform a quick cost-benefit analysis before accepting the touchpoint.

Old Touchpoint - If previous touchpoint experience is positive, then it is easier for the receiver to accept the touchpoint, but he or she may have higher expectations on the coming touchpoint. If previous touchpoint experience is negative, then the sender may need to spend more efforts to assure the receiver that the next touchpoint will not be a recurrence of previous touchpoint.