Next speaking engagement

Looking to meet me or see me live? Well then,   buckle up and catch this great event:
Marketing Analytics Innovation Summit.  Should be a great event.

Put the needle on the record

Records became cassettes,  cassettes became CDs,  CDs became mp3…. Evolution.

What has changed in retail?  We can talk e-commerce,  omni-channel,  endless aisle,  b-b,  b-c all day,  and believe me we have.   But over 90% of transactions are still in a physical store. 
The Greeks had Agora marketplaces dating back over 500 BC,  2500 years ago.  Merchants sold their wares.  People came and congregated.   Food was eaten.
Isn’t that a open air mall?  The Grove in LA,  Horton Plaza San Diego? 
So what has really changed and evolved that much in retail?  SPEED. 
Today’s shoppers want it now,  better, faster,  cheaper,  but NOW.   The merchants also have to be faster.   The quick or the Dead is really a fair assessment of today’s retail landscape.  
We in analytics need to provide amazing details,  Great info,  great insights,  but we need to provide it NOW.  Yesterday would have been even better.  We need goods in the stores now.   Vendors need to ship now.  Now.  So how do we keep up?
We need faster systems, more powerful engines,  stronger algorithms,  and  a leaner supply chain.  But we have all that now.  What’s the next progression?  What comes after the Mp3? (or any digital format,  semantics)

What will the future mall look like? The Millennials  of are course accustomed to buying online,  ship to store,  or next day shipping.   What will the next group expect? And how do we not only get ahead of that, but actually LEAD the charge?
He who answers this question wins retail in the 2020’s

-That Planning Guy
(yes,  was listening to MARRS,  Pump up the Volume, at the gym.   I had the album,  the tape,  the cd,  and now on Google play. )

Sir Isaac

For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction.
Feeling Newtonian this morning.
(third law of motion,  for you physics nerds.)

If you want to change the outcome,  change the inputs. 
If you change the inventory levels  sales will change.  Be sure the outcome is what you want.   If it isn’t,  there are other inputs you may not be factoring.  Traffic,  price,  selling,  conversion rates,  friendliness of staff?  All variables.
If you add time to your workout,  your results will change.  Phase 3, added in   another 15 min a day.  Wearing me out.. But results better be better.

-That Planning Guy

Time to do what YOU want to do

Recently a friend asked me how I find the time to write my posts, go to the gym, work a lot, and everything else in my life.
As I am THAT Planning guy— lets do the math!

168 hours in the week:
49 hours are spent asleep (I sleep about 7 hours a night)
45 hours a week average at work, with 5 hours commute (about 1/2 hour each way)
I spend 1 hour a day at the gym, 5 hours a week.
I like to play golf both weekend days, 10 hours
Eating? about 10 hours a week
For us, family time is watching TV or movies, near 3 hours a day, 20 hours.
Even adding in 30 min a day for shower and brushing teeth, getting dressed, etc, 7 hours.

That leaves 17 hours- or nearly 2 1/2  hours a day to do what YOU find important.  For me it is writing, reading, thinking.  Or close my eyes and do nothing.  Maybe a short run. Maybe the shooting range.
Where does YOUR 2 hours go- is it productive? Is it leading you towards a goal?  Every minute, every hour, every day should have a purpose.

Last, shout out to a dear friend who left a company after nearly 20 years. I have known you for most of them, and so excited that you are with a company I have known for more like 20 weeks, but a great group all the same.  Congrats on starting a new chapter of your life!

-That Planning Guy



Smart vs Wise

A smart man learns from his mistakes.
A wise man learns from other people’s mistakes.
Which one are YOU?

If you are just starting out in your career,  the best thing you can do is find a great mentor.  Someone who has walked  a mile in your moccasins.  Been there,  done that,  planned the t-shirt buy. 
If you are later in your career BE that mentor.   Give back. 

Someone,  likely many,  helped get you where you are,  return that favor.
Karma is replenishable.   Build yours. 

-That Planning Guy

Great week

Awesome week for That Planning Guy — and its still only Wednesday.
Tuesday attending the Platt Retail Institute Analytics event was great.  SO many smart people in one event.  Learned a lot of fun things about signage and a different perception of what a ‘sign’ can do.  Then a visit to the Murtec conference, and some time in Restaurant Tech- great to hear innovations in other industries.
Dinner @ Olives Tuesday with a great crew, and dinner at Lago tonight with same crew, but expanded.  Met some smart restaurant people doing some really interesting IT/tech things.  Still curious who if anyone is doing any pricing analytics? Love to hear about that.

Rest of week could be even more telling as this journey continues. A few phone calls and a few email conversations still to have.

Come gather ’round people
Wherever you roam
And admit that the waters
Around you have grown
And accept it that soon
You’ll be drenched to the bone
If your time to you
Is worth savin’
Then you better start swimmin’
Or you’ll sink like a stone
For the times they are a-changin’
-Bob Dylan.

-That Planning Guy


Digital Retail Forum

Attending a great event today,  presented by Platt Retail Institute. 
A lot of talk about how consumers are being engaged,  and how to we do even better.  
How do we measure tears? Emotional responses to IoT,  interactions. 
More to follow.
-That Planning Guy,  on location!

ROI- Retail Orphan Initiative

I took part in the ROI event this year in NY at the NRF conference.  I can only say that I was truly proud to be a part of the great day for the great cause.

I ran across this in RIS this week: RIS ROI Article

All I can say is THANK YOU to Darren Singer and Shopko Stores for showing what caring looks like.

As SVP of Retail Health & Wellness for Shopko Stores, my mission is to improve the quality of life for the patients and families in the communities we serve. Joining the Retail Orphan Initiative and my compatriots in our industry in this righteous cause of caring for orphans and foster kids is aligned to this goal. This cause resonates with me as a father and a citizen of the world. I hope it does you as well.

For this reason, I am issuing a donation challenge to like-minded retailers and partners to join RetailROI make a difference. I have donated $1,000 and challenge my friends and colleagues in the industry to donate as well. $1,000 to RetailROI this month means 50 special needs orphans can move from an impersonal orphanage into a loving foster home.

Whether you are participating in March Gladness or simply want to make a donation, I urge you to get involved. You can donate here. 100% of the money raised after payment fees goes to help these children. Will you please join me?

Together we can make a HUGE Difference.

Darren Singer
SVP Retail Health and Wellness
Shopko Stores

The Retail Orphan Initiative is grassroots charity made up of retailers, vendors and partners in the Retail/Hospitality Industry to leverage our skills, networks and companies to make a real difference for orphans and vulnerable children in the US and around the world. Inspired by the work of the late Paul Singer (CIO of Target and SuperValu), RetailROI has helped over 180,000 children with clean water, schools, computer labs and business training in the last seven years. Please get involved. More information is available


Monday Morning

What does that conjure up in your head? Dread?  Oh God another Monday… What will be waiting for me today….
WRONG. A whole new set of data to tear into.  Truths to be uncovered.   Answers to be revealed,  and business to be driven. 
Anyone can fix a problem in hindsight.  What separates the winners from the losers is fixing it in real time, or near real time.

Identify. Analyze.  React.  Repeat.

I challenge all my Data Nerd brethren to BRING IT on a Monday. 


-THAT Planning Guy

Weekend Update

A few things to comment for the weekend:
This week, in the same day, I said something was as ‘goofy as a left-handed join’. (if you don’t get that reference you may be on the wrong site) I also commented “Yo Dre, I got something to say”
I quoted Ice Cube and a SQL command in the same day.   It was THAT kind of day.
In the coming weeks, I will have a lot of things to say about BI and big data ‘tools. ‘ What does data mining look like? SHOULD it be easy?
I am thinking about the update to Replenishment 101 (201?) Where to go from simple? Complex!
Also, want to explore the pre/in/post season analytics: Living in 3 seasons at the same time.
Last, soon I want to look into size/color analysis: Best practice? Timing? Whats the best time to dig in the dirt to find the answwer?

“Somewhere squatteth the toad of truth.  ”

Stay tuned!

-THAT Planning Guy

PS- for my #datanerds:
FROM tablename1 LEFT JOIN tablename2
ON columnname1 = columnname2
WHERE condition