Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Highly Effective Behavior to be Succeed in Business

Stephen Covey, in his book, 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, describes an important essences to be succeed in business world.

What made us special as a human, is that we have "self-consciousness", ability to think about our way of thinking. That's the reason we have full authority of every single thing in this world. We are not our feeling, we are not our mood, and we are not even our own thinking. Our consciousness about these three things separated us from animal world. It makes us possible to check up our self, our paradigm about ourselves, and it will affect not only our attitude and character, but also how we picture others.

Most of the times, because we lack of "self consciousness", we limited our potency and ability to be able to build good communication and relationship with others. But the good thing is, as a human, we can check up our own paradigm and decide whether it is based on reality or just a function of condition.

One of the popular model by Pavlov is the theory of stimulus/response. It explains that we are put in a certain condition to have a certain respond by certain stimulus. We are often determined by our condition, do not have control of the influence, and admitted the power of condition itself.

The truth is, we have control of our response, we can CHOOSE to decide how things can affect ourselves. We have freedom and power to choose certain respond. Between stimulus and response, we have freedom to CHOOSE.We can choose to be Reactive or Proactive!

Reactive person is very dependable on situation and mood. Weather condition and how people treat them can greatly affect their behavior. They are moved by feeling, emotion, situation, and condition.

In other way, Proactive person is moved by VALUE. Value that has been carefully selected and considered. Hat happened around them and how people treat them will have less impact into their behavior. They can control their response from certain stimulus by value, not by emotion.

Changed need to be from inside-out. Proactive person understand the value of this statement. They focused on how to changed inside first, things that they have full control of. They don't blame others and release their responsibility, they always start from the inside, what can they changed to make things work out. They always evaluate, learn, and changed to be better person. They understand that nobody can have access to hurt them, unless they themselves give a permission. For example, if your boss didn't treat you right, you can choose to be hurt or not. If you hurt, you just lose your chances. But if you learn from that, you can choose to understand what is your boss will and it can motivate you to do things above the line.

In business world, we always faced by tons of choices. We can choose to be reactive or proactive. We can choose to blame or learn. We can choose to be controlled by condition or we can control our condition. Be wise with your choice.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Business Value: Win the Heart Share!

In Business, we all familiar with market share and mind share. Strategy is being used to win mind share and Tactic is being used to win market share. However, these two aspects are not strong enough to build long term customers. The most vital aspect in marketing is to win heart share! Why heart share?

In year 2000, SQ airplane experienced fatal accident in Taiwan airport. The plane routed from Singapore to Los Angeles hit the contruction equipment, including excavator and buldozer, when they were about to take off. There are 83 person died in this accident and others experienced injuries. It was the first accident ever for Singapore Airlines!

Soon after incident, CEO of Singapore Airlines, Dr. Cheong arranged a press release and expressed his apology for the accident. He said that no matter what caused the accident in the field, it is still SQ airplane and SQ is fully responsible for that. He's not trying to blame anything. Soon after, SQ was offered a kind of "Condolence Fund" for the family of those who are victims. They gave $400,000 for the family of those who died and $20,000 for those who experienced injuries.

The way of SQ handling the problems received many praises from everywhere. People called this as "Nothing Short of Outstanding". And now on, we can see the result of this, Singapore Airlines is still the number one airline in the world! This proved that they won the heart of customers despite of its failure. They focused on creating customer value for long-term relationship. Even though market share and mind share are important in the business competition, but Value Share is matter the most.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

KFC and McDonald's — a model of blended culture

CEOs of America Tricon Global Restaurants, the group that owns KFC and Pizza Hut, promotes Traditional Peking Chicken Roll at a KFC restaurant in Shanghai.

At present, there are more than 1,000 KFC restaurants in China, and they are increasing at annual rate of 200. A new KFC restaurant opens every other day. Western counterpart McDonald's also continues to expand its premises.

Having arrived on the mainland in the early 1990s, McDonald's has more than 600 restaurants in nearly 100 cities. Although there have been fewer golden arches in America, its native country, in the past two years, China's McDonald's have grown at a rate of 100 restaurants per year.

The total income of fast food restaurants in China now stands at 180 billion yuan RMB, and KFC and McDonald's account for eight percent. What kind of magic has brought them such success in China? How do they sustain growth rates? Their standardized business operation apart, the key is excellent inter-cultural management.

Western Fast Food — Chinese Style

Alluring the captious customers is a hurdle every foreign fast food restaurant must clear. The novelty of these fast food restaurants initially won many customers. Although cheap and commonplace in America, at the time the Chinese government's opening-up policy was newly enacted, fast food was exotically foreign enough to whet Chinese people's curiosity about the outside world. Managers took advantage of this by charging the relatively high prices of 10 yuan for a hamburger, and 5 yuan for a Coke.

By the mid-1990s, there were 100 fast food restaurants around Beijing; the convenience, efficient service, comfortable environment, pleasing music and jovial atmosphere garnered fans. Office workers enjoyed grabbing a quick bite on their way to work, and friends enjoyed relaxing over a Coke. However, certain eagle-eyed managers noticed that some people never dropped in when they passed by. Some customers complained that fast food was not as good as their Chinese cuisine, and that it lacked variety. McDonald's and KFC restaurants were almost empty during the traditional celebrations of Spring Festival and Mid-autumn Festival, while Chinese restaurants were heaved and bustled.

The reason? Cultural differences. Fast food restaurants like KFC and McDonald's are distinct American brands. Differences between China and US politics, economics, social development and ideology became obstacles to international enterprises operating in China. Corporate culture could not be understood or accepted here, especially in the restaurant field, where culture plays a crucial role.

McDonald's at full sail on the Huangpu River.

So the solution was to adapt: when in Rome, do as the Romans. Deep-rooted in the Chinese consciousness is the traditional culture of food and drink that features color, fragrance, flavor and variety. Fast food simply does not compare. Now that curiosity had faded, people returned to their own more extensive cuisine. Under such circumstances, the only way out was to combine the two different cultures. Fast food restaurants have been learning to absorb elements of Chinese culture.

Since the summer of 2001, KFC has introduced many Chinese items onto their menus. Preserved Sichuan Pickle and Shredded Pork Soup was one of the first. Consumers felt their traditions were being respected when they could taste Chinese cuisine at a foreign restaurant. The soup proved a success, and Mushroom Rice, Tomato and Egg Soup, and Traditional Peking Chicken Roll were soon added to the menu. KFC also serves packets of Happy French Fry Shakes that contain beef, orange and Uygur barbecue spices.

Not content to lag behind, McDonald's Vegetable and Seafood Soup and Corn Soup were introduced, and the company worked to modify the restaurants' design. During the 2004 Spring Festival, McDonald's on Beijing's Wangfujing Street attracted many people with a traditional Chinese look, decorating their interiors with paper-cuts of the Chinese character Fu (Happiness), magpies and twin fishes, all auspicious symbols.

Inter-cultural Management Mode

KFC and McDonald's have absorbed the Chinese cultural elements of showing respect, recognition, understanding, assimilation and amalgamation, while maintaining the substance of the Western culture of efficiency, freedom, democracy, equality and humanity. This inter-cultural management mode, with American business culture at the core, supplemented by Chinese traditional culture, provides reference for international enterprises which need to adjust, enrich and reconstruct their corporate culture to enhance local market flexibility.

There are, however, certain conditions essential to inter-cultural management mode. On the objective side, there must be similarities in environment in order for the two cultures to connect and synchronize. KFC and McDonald's embody an accommodation of the fast tempo of modern life: a product of development and a market economy. Their resultant speed and efficiency are only meaningful in countries with a market economy. China's rapid economic development offered the environmental conditions corresponding to fast food culture. Services offered by fast food chains express their full respect for freedom, an American value, as well as the psychological statement of Chinese open-mindedness that yearns to understand and experience the Western lifestyle. Two cultures proactively crashed, connected, and assimilated. KFC and McDonald's use the localization strategy to re-express American business culture, with profound traditional Chinese cultural emblems, catering to local customs on the basis of standardized management.

Source: China Daily

Monday, May 25, 2009

In-N-Out Burger's six secrets for out-and-out success

On the heels of mounting cynicism generated by Wall Street bailouts and the perception that corporate leaders are gaming the system to make a profit, at least one American company is proving that businesses can survive and even thrive while sticking to traditional values.

In-N-Out Burger, the iconic West Coast hamburger chain frequented by celebrities, is not slashing jobs or making major cutbacks during this recession. In fact, the regional chain, which has 232 locations in California, Arizona, Nevada and Utah, took in an estimated $420 million in revenues in 2008, and claims per-store sales of about $1.94 million. So how is this mom-and-pop burger joint pumping out per-store sales numbers that are better than Burger King and a host of other competitors?

BusinessWeek writer Stacy Perman has penned a book (In-N-Out Burger: A Behind the Counter Look at the Fast-Food Chain That Breaks All the Rules) that chronicles how In-N-Out Burger founders Esther and Harry Snyder built the foundation for a business that has performed well since it debuted in 1948. Here are the six principles she says have made In-N-Out Berger an out-and-out success:

Keep a Relentless Focus on Quality -- Perman says that the Snyders were "micro-managers" from the beginning, insisting on only using the highest quality beef, produce and other ingredients at their stores.

"Harry would go to the meat purveyors, and stand over the butcher's shoulder to make sure that he got the meat that he paid for," she says, adding, "In the 60s, at a time when the fast food industry had turned to using frozen beef patties and French fries, [Harry] began hiring butchers so that he could maintain the quality of his beef. His own butchers would prepare the beef patties, and that continues to this day, but on a much larger scale."

Listen to Your Customers -- One of the company's mottos is "Our customer is everything." Applying that belief led to the company policy of preparing burgers just the way customers asked for them. Some of the customer favorites became popular and were eventually adopted as the restaurant chain's "secret menu." By listening to their customers, In-N-Out created menu choices other stores couldn't duplicate.

"So now you have three or four generations of people who grew up on In-and-Out Burger who have this very special relation ship to the chain," says Perman. "It's very authentic -- you can't buy that. It's very organic and they've been very careful never to commercialize that."

Treat Employees Well -- The Snyders always held their employees in high esteem, paying them higher wages than competitors and calling them associates to make them feel more connected to the franchise.

"They believed in sharing their success with their employees," says Perman, noting that In-N-Out associates make $10 an hour working part-time and starting store managers make $100,000, plus bonuses tied to store performance. The company benefits package is also generous. Such treatment engenders loyalty from workers.

"They have the lowest turnover rate in the fast food industry, which is notorious for turnover," says Perman. "They say that the average manager's tenure is 14 years, but they have managers who have been there 30 or 40 years."

Keep Things Simple and Consistent -- Another of Harry Snyder's mottos was, "Keep it real simple, do one thing and do it the best you can." That theme runs throughout the business.

"People get cynical about changes at different companies, but they always know that In-N-Out doesn't change," says Perman. "In and out stands for something and they've stuck to it and their customers really see that."

Expand Slowly and Only Under the Right Conditions – In-N-Out has strict guidelines that limit the growth of stores, but ensure each store's success.

"They don't open a store outside of a 500-mile radius of the commissaries where they get their fresh beef patties, their buns and other products because they want to maintain freshness," says Perman. "They make deliveries daily or near daily."

She also points out that, "They never open a new store unless they have management strength in place. They have very rigorous training procedures."

Define Your Own Level of Success – In corporate America, where success is sometimes defined as rapid growth at any cost, In-N-Out has, as the title suggests, made its own rules.

"If the customers and the employees were happy and they were making the best product they could, they were successful," she says, "and they have maintained that philosophy."

Source: Dailyfinance.com

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Adding Value in Modern Business

Adding value in Modern Business is not necessary means adding high cost in our side. In fact, many companies has implemented low budget-high impact strategy. Let's say Shell Petroleum, their price are relatively higher than Pertamina. But they proved themselves as a tough competitor of Pertamina which statisticly has more experience and strong brand image in Indonesia.

When you fill up your fuel in Shell, you can ask them to clean up your mirror. It's simple thing, but it added an important value through it. Many customers are choosing their gas station because of this simple stuff. In this case, gas is the main product and in my opinion, its product value are exactly the same (or maybe a little better?)between Pertamina and Shell.

Another example, Wal-Green, one of the best convenient store in US that has more than 3000 stores around North America. Most of their stuff are relatively higher in price compared by its competitor. But they keep growing and growing in market share, profit, and amount of new stores opened every year. While I was work there few years back, I realized that one of their strength is company culture (besides its strategic location). In Walgreen, employees HAVE TO treat customers as best as they can! They need to greet each customers, offer an assistance, pick up the phone at third ring at most, and so on.

It's all a simple stuff that doesn't cost a penny! But it has a positive impact, it can build relationship between shoppers and employees, and indeed it strengthen their loyalty to the store. In general, Wal-Green store are small to medium sizes, which means it's much easier for them to show hospitality to their customers rather than big stores such as Wal-Mart. This way, they can both reap a good margin and win customer loyalty.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Business Essential Element: IQ, EQ, and SQ

To be succeed in business, IQ and EQ are definitely an essential element. IQ contained knowledge, problem-solving skill, and technical skill whereas EQ talked about emotion, self-control, mentality, and character. Generally speaking, IQ is much easier to be seen by others rather than EQ. However, high quality people with great IQ are not necessary to be succeed or maximized their potential in business area. Business is about making a good relation with others.

EQ can be seen mostly in difficult situation, that's why people with higher EQ have a higher chances to be success. EQ are talking about how a person can understand himself and others. He is able to understand and manage his own emotion so that he can manage and motivate others.

In his book, New Wave Marketing, Hermawan Kartajaya explained that the most essential element to be succeed is SQ (Spiritual Quality). It's not only talking about religion; it's talking about values of life. SQ is talking about deep meaning of life, purpose of life, and highest motivation of human being.

As a highest creation, human have an ability to change his situation, add value to his community, and everlasting creativity to make this world a better living. When IQ is talking about "What I think" and EQ is talking about "What I feel", SQ is talking about "What I am." In this unpredictable situation, only those with great SQ are able to survive and conquer his field!

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Emotional Business: From Simple Stuff to Serious Business

Recently, there are so many advertisement in television, media, and online ads about registration for any kind of things. Reg_primbon, reg_cinta, reg_jodoh, and so on and on ... The price for that is not cheap. it's about 2000 rupiah/sms as i know. I myself never be interested for that kind of not-so-useful things. But the fact, those not-so-useful things are booming! Just right here, in Indonesia! Some of them can reap millions and millions rupiah each day.

These days, we can find many advertisement on the internet about some emotional offers such as: cara gampang jadi kaya, kerja santai dan kaya, cepat kaya dgn mudah, and so on ... Here is another great examples! I read on some media that spot on these. According to them, some of these are big liar, some are quite good, and some are great. Despite of its purposes and motivation, statistic said that players in this field are earning billion and billion rupiah.

I was wondering what is so interesting with this business. After I spent sometime reviewing, researching, and thinking, I realized that there is a huge and unique potential in Indonesia' business world: Emotion. Everything that has an emotional feeling are HOT business in Indonesia. Simple stuff can be a serious business if you can add emotional spices. Those who can sense and diligently wrap their products with emotional spices, and put effort to work on it, can easily conquer a segment of unique markets.