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Posts Tagged ‘idea

Reflection: Why grade inflation (even at Harvard) is a big problem

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Recently, I read an article arguing why grade inflation (even at Harvard) is a big problem.

From the perspective of a student,
having good grades is essential for securing jobs and admissions for further / graduate studies (MBA, PhD, JD, MD, etc).

The median grade for undergraduates in Harvard (and possibly elsewhere) is A- and its most frequently awarded grade is A. So, how can we distinguish excellent and good students?

Being students, we need to take extra efforts to distinguish themselves. Get involved in leadership / voluntary activities, take extra courses / majors / minors / online courses (and complete them!), spend a semester / a summer overseas / undertaking internships, if possible, set up a company (be an entrepreneur!)

From the perspective of an employer / a judge / a recruiter,
it is highly important to be aware of the grade inflation.
Compare students in the same batches. Minimize comparing students across batches.

"At a minimum, a college education should develop in graduates the knowledge, skills and character to lead successful lives. It should identify a student’s strengths and weaknesses, seeking to augment the former and diminish the latter. Grade inflation is harmful because it cheats students of the opportunity to understand what they do and don’t do well."

Written by blueroselady

December 22, 2013 at 6:50 am

Posted in study

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How to pump breast milk hand free?

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Use dual pump for faster result.
Wear nursing bra.
(optional) Put napkin beneath to prevent leakage into your clothes.
Use (a min of 2) clothespin to clip the pump part to bra,
use more cloethespin if necessary.
must ensure that the lower part of breast shield has no room for leakage.
Use a (baby) bolster / pillow at the base of the collection bottles so that the heavy breast milk filled bottles do not sag your breasts.
Use a sling bag to put the motor for body motion of mother.

This idea of Blueroselady is inspired from Medela freestyle :—how-to-pump-hands-free?prodsearch=463

Written by a user of Medela, UniMOM, NOK.

Written by blueroselady

February 28, 2013 at 3:19 pm

How to increase our income?

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Income = value x time x scalability

Indeed, in September 2012, I learned from an Australian mentor with numerous patents (KS) that scalability and low cost enable easy commercialization.

How much are you worth currently?
Your hourly current value = monthly income / hours worked per month

To create more value to our company and our clients, we must keep upgrading our knowledge, skills, intellectual capital.

We must constantly install new software into our mind in order to be able to create more value.

It is not one’s age, experience, or academic qualifications, but how much value one can create for his company / clients that matters and translates into different levels of income.

It is about "WHAT CAN YOU DO?"

Let us compare 2 insurance advisers.

Insurance adviser A, age 33, monthly income $3,000.
Waits for leads.
Follows up on leads.
Give adequate presentation on products / services

Closes the sale.
Never follows up with the client thereafter.
Closes monthly premium of $7,000.

Insurance adviser B, age 33, monthly income $20,000
Sets specific monthly sales target.
Actively generates leads from all source.

Creates partnership with other companies.
Ensures a minimum of 2 appointments for consultations / day.
Gives seminars on financial planning.
Writes and publishes a book on financial planning.
Does a a detailed needs and outcome analysis for potential clients.

Presents a highly beneficial and value-added plan for the client.
Helps the clients save money and identify important needs client may have overlooked (i.e. corporate insurance, estate planning, asset protection).
Follows up every 3 months to ensure client’s emotional and financial needs are met.
Sends a quarterly e-newsletter to his customers packed with tips on money management and investments.
Able to generate even more referrals from powerful services.
Helps recruit and train more sales people for the company.

Closes monthly premium of $50,000.

Now, let us compare 2 teachers.

Teacher A, age 42, monthly income $4,000
Has worked for 12 years.
Teaches the curriculum.
Gives and marks homework.
Gives tests and mark papers.

Fulfills minimum extra curricular duties.

Teacher B, age 34, monthly income $9,800
Has worked for 4 years.
Teaches the curriculum.
Able to motivate and inspire even the weakest and most unmotivated students.

Innovates / develops new curriculum / teaching methods.
Writes systems of best practices.
Trains new teachers.
Produces innovative marketing ideas to enroll more students.
Develops strong rapport with parents and provides additional family counseling.

Innovates ideas to increase department productivity, reduce expenses.
Has written 6 textbooks, assessment books that are sold locally and over the internet.
Uses accelerated teaching methods to boost grades.
Conducts seminars / workshops on weekends for parents on how to motivate their children.

Conducts seminars for students on exam skills.
Consultant to private tuition centers.

Things to increase in order to increase income:
1. leads
2. conversion rate
3. repeat business
4. average dollar purchase
5. net profit margin

In more details …

learn how to create more effective advertisements (stronger headlines, more persuasive copy, i.e. text)
TV, radio, newspaper advertising
industry newsletter advertising
internet / email advertising
magazine advertising
outdoor advertising
promotion / sale
ask for referrals
member get member scheme
offer free gift
insert into other company’s invoice
letterbox flyers
sales teams
telemarketing / make more cold calls
buying / swapping database
seminars, events, roadshows
attractive window display / video
posters, large signage

define our unique selling proposition
set sales target
excellent customer service
introduce myself
survey our past customers
sell key benefits (not features) passionately
high quality in store posters / brochures
in-store sales scripts
be a consultant / problem solver
give a money back guarantee
benefits, testimonials list
give free bonuses that increase value
great prospects and use their name
learn closing techniques
ask for the sale more than once
personal grooming, high dress standards
video in store displays
leave price to last
study and prepare for objections
specialized knowledge about our products and industry
focus on client’s needs and emphasize benefits
convenient payment scheme (credit cards, nets)
offer installment schemes with 0 interest
allow mail order / home delivery
address concerns / possible objections upfront
sell on value not price
use NLP to build strong rapport with clients
follow up with prospects regularly
improve our presentation skills

direct mail offers of the months
keep in touch every 3 months
inform clients of our entire range of services
target likely repeat customers
send special occassion cards
make customers feel special (super experience)
build a close relationship / friendship
create a loyalty program
exceed customers expectations
discount voucher off the next purchase

focus on a higher income target market
use a shopping list
sell add-ons/up sizes
make sure our client knows our full range of services
suggest most expensive first
create value packages / bundle several products in a package
buy 3 get 1 free deals
ask people to buy some more
increase prices by 10%
arrange easy finance and payment
free gift / lucky draw with $xx purchase
ask customers to buy more (e.g. McDonalds, do you want to have a combo meal? do you want to upsize? do you want to have a dessert? do you want toy?)
up sell
cross sell
do a complete needs-analysis to find out how we can add even more value to customers

increase prices
sell on value / service than price / discounts
set monthly budget targets
track costs weekly and aim to reduce by 10%
stop running ads that do not work
sell more higher margin items / sell higher margin products 1st
source for cheaper suppliers which are just as good
bargain hard with existing suppliers
increase working efficiency

Written by blueroselady

September 24, 2012 at 3:37 pm

Insights in early 2011

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Indonesia and Philippines are gifted with amazing destinations perhaps more than Thailand, Malaysia, or Vietnam but they have messed up badly in marketing and suffer from (in)security issues.

It is an open secret that no Asian countries are capable of developing intimate ties with China and India simultaneously. Kavi Chongkittavorn. The Nation (Thailand)

The US Federal Reserve’s decided to print US$600 billion stoked fears of formation of bubbles that could lead to sudden crashes. The prices of vegetables and houses went up in many Asian countries.

Dai Haifei (24, a junior architect hailed from Yiyang in southeast Hunan) built a 6sqm mobile egg-house as an answer to Beijing expensive housing where the average home is selling for about RMB 19,500 / sq m (USD 3,000).

Shares that have performed well in the recent past continue to do so for some time. This kind of momentum effect is also present in commodity prices and currencies, they rise or fall for long periods. The Economist Jan 8th, 2011.

There will soon be 7 billion people on the planet. National Geographic. January 2011.
1 in 7 people on Earth lives in slums today.
By 2045 global population is projected to reach 9 billion.

Facebook has secured $500m in financing from Goldman Sachs and Digital Sky Technologies, a Russian investment firm, to fuel its expansion plans.
The business model of Facebook is unproven.
Much of Facebook’s revenue comes from low-end display advertising.

CD sales collapsed.
YouTube runs few ads, for not much money.

Airlines keep finding new things to charge for, from pillows to checked-in luggage. Additional note in  September 2012, my mentor AK advised against buying stocks of airlines companies, because they belong to price competition, instead of sustainable competition.

Investors who buy the best-performing shares over the previous year earn much higher returns (10% points a year) than those who buy the laggards of the preceding 12 months.
Fund managers create the MOMENTUM EFFECT by WINDOW-DRESSING their portfolios with the market’s recent favourites (it looks much better to close a quarter owning the market leaders).
Clearly the momentum effect cannot last for ever or share prices would head for infinity.
An irrational market sends misleading signals, causing capital to be allocated in the wrong places, e.g. encouraging the building of houses in America, Spain, and Ireland for which there was scant underlying (as opposed to speculative) demand.
Momentum effects help to explain why bubbles develop.
Too often, central banks have tended to give speculative buyers a one-way-bet – cutting interest rates when markets falter (weaken), but leaving them unchanged when asset prices boom.
The Economist Jan 8th, 2011. The Big Mo.

Letters on the Disposable academic. Dec 18th.
Society needs highly trained critical thinkers to tackle complex problems with rigor and research skills.
Non-research jobs where they must analyze large amounts of evidence for complex decision-making.
Amanda Murphy (Chicago): I have the opportunity to teach and lecture. My adviser is supportive. I can spend all day thinking and reading books, and that is OK as it is my job.
Paul Greenberg (Managing principal, Analysis group, Boston): I am reminded of my very wise prof’s words of wisdom: the PhD students is someone who forgoes current income in order to forgo future income.

Go south, young scientist.
Brazil is a world leader in research on tropical medicine, bioenergy and plant biology.
Sao Paulo = Brazil’s richest state.
Research funding is being squeezed in Europe and North America.

The most important and difficult problem of academia in Italy was its non-transparent recruitment system. The Economist Jan 8th, 2011.

The best companies e.g. GE, Procter Gamble, are obsessed by the VITAL FEW.
Universities welcome the masses: more people now teach at British universities than attended them in the 1950s.
Novartis, a drug firm, asks high-flyers to produce LEADER PLANS and share them with their mentors and contemporaries.
The best companies single out high-flyers for special training.
Agilent and Novartis like to turn specialists into general managers.
Elitism has its drawbacks. In their rush to classify people, companies can miss potential stars.
People who are average in one job can become stars in another.

Well-paid fund managers have spent decades trying to find ways to beat the market.
Why the bother devoting so much $ and effort to researching the fortunes of individual companies when the momentum approach appears to be easy to exploit and has been aroud for a long time.
SMALL COMPANIES tend to do better than bigger ones in the LONG TERM, but they tend to be LESS DIVERSIFIED and thus MORE RISKY.

MOMENTUM may = the lag btw BELIEFS and the NEW REALITY.
TRENDS occur because there is disequilibrium between SUPPLY and DEMAND.
How to exploit momentum ? trade faster and faster with a time horizon of ms rather than months. But not all market movements are part of a trend. As you trade faster, it is easier to get misled by the noise.

MOMENTUM EFFECT tends to work for the best performers over the past 12 months, but not for those that have shone for longer periods, say 3 or 5 years.

Momentum works over the short term.
Value is successful over longer periods.

1975, 2000, 2003, 2009 are bad years for investors who used a short-term momentum strategy.

After the development of benchmarks like the S&P 500, clients began to demand that fund managers proved their skill by outperforming an index. Many failed, but even some who succeeded may have done so by holding concentrated portfolios of only few stocks (which more risky thank overall market).

These days investors can not only match a benchmark through simple index-tracking funds, they can also own portfolios that exploit the VALUE and MOMENTUM effects without paying hefty fund-management fees.

Momentum effect suggest that an irrationality might be at work; investors could be buying shares (and commodities) just because they have risen in price.

China: price rises in China = inflated fears.
If the prices of vegetables, fruit, other crops are more flexible than other prices, FOOD INFLATION may be an EARLY WARNING of an overheating economy.

20% of UK graduates out of work. Guardian. Jan 26th, 2011.

Written by blueroselady

January 31, 2011 at 2:58 pm