Like a Diamond in the Rough

I came across this article recently that really hit home.

The gist of the article was how people who are driven, passionate and successful are often alone.

There have definitely been times over the last decade that I have been my own boss that I’ve felt alone.

However, most of the time I’m not alone. I have always worked hard to surrounded myself with people who get what it meas to be successful. Ones with a great work ethic, have a vision and possess integrity.

So when I read the article, which the above quote is a paraphrase of, I felt the need to share it and explain what it means to me.

We are “diamonds in the rough”. This really says a lot. We are rare, we are valuable and we often take a while to turn from common to priceless.

I love the keywords, “honest”, “reliable” and “forward thinking”.

It never ceases to amaze me about how many people do business dishonestly. Its a small minority, but some days it seems like I attract more than my fair share who are trying to sell something that is not what they promise. Overtime honesty is the best policy, you can’t sustain success if you are constantly overpromising and under delivering.

Reliability goes hand in hand with honesty, but often being reliable can take a back seat when you are overwhelmed. When you set up an offer and you don’t have the ability to meet that demands of that offer over time you are going to lose credibility with your clients and they are going to go some where else.

To be in business in 2020 and not be forward thinking is an oxymoron. With the constant evolution in technology it has never been easier to grow a business. Social media, artificial intelligence, chatbots, smartphones… you have to wonder what’s coming next. And when you do find what is coming next, you have to jump on it. Small businesses around the world are being killed by the technology gap between them and their big tech titan competitors.

 So this leads me back to the central theme of joining masterminds and surrounding yourself with people who are honest, reliable and forward thinking.

As we are now 20 years into the information age, masterminds are still the best way to meet the challenge of being alone. Digital ones work too.


Daniel Meyer heads Sonic Analytics, an analytics firm with offices in Manila, the San Francisco Bay Area and Ocala, FL. With over 20 years in Big Data, Dan is one of the most sought-after public speakers in Asia and offers big data coaching and analytics training seminars on both sides of the Pacific. Dan has also recently joined the Powerteam International family as a small business analytics resource speaker.

Sonic Analytics( brings big data analytics solutions like business intelligence, business dashboards and data storytelling to small and medium sized organizations looking to enhance their data-driven decision-making capabilities. We also advocate the use of analytics for civic responsibility through training, consulting and education.

As citizens of this great democracy, we need to look at the data (analytics), plan a course of action (strategy) and share our data-driven viewpoints (presentation). This approach to a data savvy work force starts in school. So, we started an internship program to empower our youth to use Analytics, plan Strategy and Present their insights… ASP!

When not training current and future analysts, you can find Dan championing the use of analytics to empower data-driven citizenship by volunteering his expertise with schools and non-profits dedicated to evidence-based social progress like Saint Leo University’s Women in STEAM 2020 Conference.


Why Focus on Data Analytics Competencies?

Later this week I will be attending the APEC Project DARE (Data Analytics Raising Awareness) Advisory Council in Singapore to discuss Recommended APEC Data Analytics Competencies.

Why Focus on Data Analytics Competencies?

Jobs requiring a familiarity with data analysis are forecasted to dramatically rise, resulting in a massive shortage of qualified employees. According to reports, some economies face a shortage of up to 1.5 million data analytics-enabled managers and analysts, costing billions of dollars in lost revenue annually. There is an urgent need to ensure that the future workforce is equipped with data analytics competencies to secure the jobs of tomorrow and move with ease in the labor market.

This is where Project DARE comes in. Project DARE aims to facilitate development of a data analytics-enabled workforce across the APEC region to effectively support sustainable economic growth and prosperity in the Asia-Pacific region. To do so, Project DARE developed a set of Recommended APEC Data Analytics Competencies which will be a resource to academic institutions and governments to align curricula, courses and programs so APEC economies are equipped to educate its workforce with the data analytics skills needed by employers in a data-driven future.

How was the Recommended Data Analytics Competencies Developed?

The Recommended APEC Data Analytics Competencies was developed through a public-private partnership with input from over 40 Advisory Group members (see Acknowledgements) comprised of distinguished business and higher education leaders who oversee data science and analytics needs for their organization and data science inter-disciplinary initiatives and curriculum. The Advisory Group was led by the private sector partner co- chairs, global skills and knowledge company Wiley and the Business Higher Education Forum (BHEF), with technical support by the EDISON (Education for Data Intensive Science to Open New Science Frontiers) Project.


DMAIPH and Analytics Education

Facilitating a mastery of the fundamentals of analytics is what DMAIPH does best. As a key parnter of the Data Science Philippines Meetup Group, DMAIPH champions the use of using data. All across the world, companies are scrambling to hire analytics talent to optimize the big data they have in their businesses. We can empower students and their instructors with the knowledge they need to prepare for careers in analytics. Contact DMAIPH now at or connect with me directly so we can set a guest lecturer date, On-the-Job Training experience or other analytics education solution specifically tailored to your needs.

About Project DARE

Project DARE is an initiative of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation led by the United States (U.S. Department of Labor) with co-sponsorship from the governments of Australia, Japan, Malaysia, Peru, Chinese Taipei, and Viet Nam. As a project of APEC’s Human Resources and Development Working Group (HRDWG), Project DARE seeks to enable APEC workforce with the data analytics competencies demanded by employers today and to secure the jobs of tomorrow.

How is Buisness Analytics Used in the Philippines?

Another search result that lead someone to

And it is a very good question.

Analytics in the Philippines is something that I have spent the past 6 years trying to champion.

We have come a long way, from where hardly anyone really knew what analytics meant to a time where just about every business is trying to get more analytics in it.

By far the most common use of analytics is management reporting. It’s not uncommon for the Philippines to follow trends in American by 10 years or so.. and this is true when it comes to analytics.


10 years ago I was a business analyst and we were pretty uncommon outside corporate America. But in the time since then we have seen an explosion in analytics jobs and now in data science jobs.

The past year we are seeing that trend here in the Philippines.

There are some great business analysts here in the Philippines who do some pretty amazing things with business intelligence tools. But they are mostly limited to descriptive analytics.

The number of Filipinos who can do advanced analytics like building models and predictive analytics are few and far between.

So as of now, most business analytics focuses on reports. Occasionally I see some amazing data  visualizations or complex predictive models, but they are still by far the exception to the norm.

In the coming months you will see more and more trainings and courses built around more advanced types of analytics, but I have to wonder if its almost too little too late.

Time will tell.

Analytics in the Philippines – The Philippines is at the center of the action when it comes to solutions to the global need for analytics. Blessed with a solid foundation of young, educated and English speaking workforce, companies around the world are look for Filipino analytics talent to fill analytics positions.

DMAIPH was set up to facilitate these solutions and bring the talent and the business together. And that is exactly why I wrote Putting Your Data to Work, the first analytics guidebook designed specifically for the Philippines. Contact DMAIPH now at or connect with me directly so we can help you take advantage of this unique global opportunity.



The Four P’s (Principles) of Marketing

I was recently asked how I apply the Four Principles of Marketing to my business.

The 4 P’s being Product, Place, Price and Promotion.

When I was with Wells Fargo, I spent a significant portion of my time working with marketing teams to help analyze market opportunity, assess market penetration, and to measure marketing campaign success.

I learned quite a bit about how to attach metrics to each of the 4 P’s to determine our strategy.

When it comes to product, the most common metric is sales. How many products have been sold and how much revenue that translate too is a cornerstone of any business plan.

It can be just important though to blend in analysis that is not reflected by internal data alone. Knowing how your product stacks up to the competition and what your customers are saying about your product are much more challenging data points to capture.

As for place, the general data point most business decision-makers start with is how much sales activity comes out of a location or geographic area.


Place can also be reflected in marketing channel; in-store, direct, online, etc. Decision-makers tie this concept to market place and always look within that place to determine marketing plans.

I also like to add demographic data to place to help understand overall opportunity and trends in how the market place is evolving.

Price is much more than just what it costs to produce and sell a product. Marketing expense must also be counted in the amount ultimately charged for a product. Price usually contain several components that can be analyzed to make sure price covers expense and allows for profit.

Again, I look to competitor data to help assess if the price we are charging is optimal. As a rule, you don’t want to be too expensive or too cheap when your customers have a choice.

Finally, when looking at promotion, its more than just where you sell your product and what marketing materials your use. Using the right delivery channel and leveraging your company brand also factor into the equation and should have metrics attached to them.

So, as you can see, marketing is more than just counting products sold, finding a place to sell the product, setting a price and beginning a promotion. For a good marketing analytics strategy, that is just the beginning.

An effective marketing analytics approach should have at least 10-20 data points to more accurately capture the things you need to know like how big is your market, how competitive is your product, how deeply have you penetrated your market, and what delivery options are the most effective ways to promote your product.

The 4 P’s of Marketing can easily be built into a marketing analytics dashboard where you see your key performance indicators and make swift, decisive business decisions.

Since setting up my business about 5 years ago, I have helped dozens of businesses get a better handle on their 4 P’s using marketing analytics.

Let me show you how we can do the same for your business.

Business Strategy with Analytics – Aligning a business strategy to drive an organization forward requires a robust analytics solution. Businesses who have good analytics tend to be much more profitable and efficient then ones that do not. DMAIPH has helped dozens of companies in both the U.S. and the Philippines with adding more data analysis in their business strategy. Contact DMAIPH now at or connect with me directly to find out what we can do to help you align your business strategy with analytics.

Where’s the Analytics? The Analytics Challenges of Malls in Metro Manila

I spend a lot of time in malls when I’m in Metro Manila.

Business meetings at coffee shops.

Staff meetings at restaurants.

Getting exercise why walking to hit my FitBit goal.

I see a lot of movies.

And I am not alone.

Malls are where everyone goes. To beat the heat, to meet up with friends, to conduct business, and of course to shop and eat.

Given that I spend so much time in malls, I think a lot about the analytics that can take place behind the scenes.

Or in many cases, the apparent lack of analytics.

Now don’t get me wrong. I love the Philippines.

The heart and spirit of the Filipino people is the primary reason I set up a business here.

But I do sometimes wonder, how much better things could be in my adopted home if there was more widespread use of analytics in decision-making.

The malls are full of great examples of decisions that are pretty much done without much data analysis.

At least that is how it appears to me.

So in this series of blog posts I will discuss several topics that come to my mind when being in a mall in Metro Manila and how I would go about using analytics to investigate my observations.

Analytics in the Philippines – The Philippines is at the center of the action when it comes to solutions to the global need for analytics. Blessed with a solid foundation of young, educated and English speaking workforce, companies around the world are look for Filipino analytics talent to fill analytics positions. DMAIPH was set up to facilitate these solutions and bring the talent and the business together. Contact DMAIPH now at or connect with me directly so we can help you take advantage of this unique global opportunity.

Analytics for the Small Business

Analytics is about looking for patterns in data to help answer questions. Most businesses use analytics to help ensure more data-driven decision-making.

No matter the size, scale or scope, every business generates a wealth of business data. Every business has an opportunity to uses that data to drive more intelligent decisions.

The primary people responsible for conducting analytics on the massive amounts of data we have today are analysts. Analysts are skilled in using various technologies and methodologies to identify, inventory and integrate large amounts of data quickly.

The term analytics can often be used interchangeably with statistics and data science. What separates analytics from disciplines like statistics and data science is generally the speed of the analysis and the focus on solving business problems.

The most common form of analytics is business analytics that are generally used by owners, senior leaders and decision-makers to investigate problems, validate assumptions and to guide strategic planning. As a generalist, business analysts can help in a number of areas of the business.

Business analysts are therefore the most common type of analyst, especially in a small business. If you do a job search on the title analyst, as many as half the posting will likely be business analysts. However, analytics can be used in an almost limitless number of business functions in specific areas like HR, recruitment, marketing, finance, and so on. Each one can have its very own analyst.

Analysts have been around a long time, but recent technological advances have both allowed us to produce and capture more data as well as give us the ability to analyze immense data sets quickly. Thus we are amidst a huge boom in the applications of analytics and the need for analytics talent across the globe. Analytics is something just about every business leader is trying to figure out how to use more effectively in their business. To add to our challenge, the demand for good analysts is booming just as fast as the explosion in big data.

As a result, there is a huge shortage of people who are skilled in working with data to answer questions and solve problems. This is why you have seen the number of analyst job postings increasing at an amazing rate. In the first few chapters of the book we will discuss the quickening demand for analytics talent and why it is so hard to find good analysts, especially at the small business level.

If you are a business leader, manager, owner, and/or executive are not actively trying to surround yourself with analysts and if you are not infusing an analytics centric culture in your business, you will most likely soon see your business fail.


A small business needs analysts to make sense of big data, manage the storage of the data, and know when to use which of the 3 types of analytics (descriptive, predictive, and prescriptive). To be effective, analysts need to have business intelligence tools to create data visualizations and build business dashboards.

If you need an analyst or want to be trained in analytics, connect with me and I can show you how to get started.

Small Business Analytics – The field of small business analytics is just starting to blossom as companies are looking for more data-driven decision-making to prosper in the age of Big Data. DMAIPH is at the fore front of providing analytics training, consulting and outsourcing options to small businesses. Contact DMAIPH now at or connect with me directly to set up a free consultation on how to get more analytics in your small business.

Big Data Analytics: Using Business Intelligence Tools – 7/11/17 in Ortigas

A good analyst uses Business Intelligence Tools like Batman uses devices stored in his utility belt.

Per Wikipedia, business intelligence (BI) tools are “a type of application software designed to retrieve, analyze, transform and report data for business intelligence. The applications generally read data that have been previously stored, often, though not necessarily, in a data warehouse or data mart.”

Knowing what business intelligence tool to employ to what data set in order to conduct analysis and present your findings requires a thorough understanding of what tools are available and what they can do.

The key general categories of business intelligence applications include:

  • Spreadsheets
  • Reporting and querying software: applications that extract, sort, summarize, and present selected data
  • Online analytical processing (OLAP)
  • Digital dashboards
  • Data mining
  • Process visualization
  • Data warehousing

By far the most common business intelligence tool used is MS Excel. Having at least a intermediate masterly of Excel is a good start in understanding how business intelligence tools work.

Learning to run formulas, insert pivot tables and produce simple visualizations using charts and graphs give a foundation in how to take data and do something with it to inspire analysis.

Using Excel also teaches you how data needs to be structured, formatted and managed. You can’t run even basic analysis activities if your data is not encoded in a way that your tools can make sense of.

Once you have mastered the use of Excel then the logical next step is using BI tools that pull data from Excel. For example, Tableau is a BI tool that can extract data from Excel to build more powerful data analysis and visualizations.

BI tools can also be used to mine data from large data storage systems like data warehouses, data lakes and data marts. Again, understanding how data is structured in important. Knowing how queries are written (for example in SQL) to extract data is important.

If you are looking to get a better understanding of what tools you should be using to analysis the data in your business, you can join my next training seminar (July 11, 2017) in Ortigas.


Analytics Training – DMAIPH offers a wide range of analytics centric training solutions for professionals and students via public, in-house, on-site, and academic settings. We tailor each training event to meet the unique needs of the audience. If you need empowerment and skills enhancement to optimize the use of analytics in your organization, we are here to help. Contact DMAIPH now at or connect with me directly to set up a free consultation on which of our DMAIPH analytics training solutions is best for you.

Most Analysts Are Spending Only 20% of Their Time on Reporting

In many cases reporting is either something that is set and stone and just needs to be filled or there is a time crunch forcing quick and dirty reporting.

Little time is devoted to using the data for storytelling, maximizing data visualization and really providing the audience exactly what its needs.

% Finding Analyzing Reporting
10 12% 6% 33%
20 14% 10% 39%
30 20% 31% 24%
40 6% 14% 2%
50 31% 16% 2%
60 14% 18% 0
70 0% 0% 0
80 0% 2% 0
90 0% 0 0
100 0% 0 0

Ideally, at least a third of the time should be spent post data gathering and analysis to really give the end user of the data the things they need for intelligent decision-making.

A full one-third only spend 10% of their time on reporting, which to me means that there is a lot of the waste in their analytics process.

If you take a full 40 hour week to complete a high priority, high value report but only have Friday afternoon to boil down your finding into a report, it is highly unlikely that your report will fully capture the fruits of your labor.

However, if the time frame is even shorter… you have to do all this in one day, you are just getting to the reporting phase at around 3:30pm.

You have less than an hour and a half to summarize you methods and boil your findings into a few points.

Making sure you craft a compelling story to really influence decision-making based on intelligent data analysis is likely impossible.

Data is based on a survey I sent to 3,000 of my LinkedIn connections who are either analysts or work closely with data and analysis.

Analytics Survey – DMAIPH conducts quarterly analytics surveys to collect data on current trends in analytics. We specialize in surveys that assess analytics culture and measuring how aligned an organization is to using data and analytics  in its decision-making. Contact DMAIPH now at or connect with me directly to find out more about how DMAIPH can conduct surveys to help you assess the analytics culture in your business.



Big Data Analytics and Business Intelligence

Enabling Your Business to Make Smarter Decisions

Are you tired of being under constant pressure to make the right number-based decisions for your organization?

Are you too often overwhelmed by an out-of-control flood of numerical information, much of it conflicting and confusing?

Big data is booming ast as organizations devote new technology resources to tapping the terabytes (if not petabytes) of data flowing into their organizations.

Today big Data is flooding into the business both through internal processes and externally via social media.

What does this all mean for business intelligence (BI) users and systems?

With all the attention on advanced analytics for big data, what’s the play for BI?

Integrating advanced analytics for big data with BI systems is an important step toward gaining full return on investment.

Advanced analytics and BI can be highly complementary.

Advanced analytics can provide the deeper, exploratory perspective on the data.

BI systems provide a more structured user experience through there richness in dashboard visualization, reporting, performance management metrics, and more can be vital to making advanced analytics actionable.

Recently on December 6, 2016 I was at Astoria Plaza, Ortigas Center, Pasig City for a dynamic and empowering one-day training on Big Data Analytics and Business Intelligence.

Course Description:

Make smarter business decisions using these powerful data analysis techniques

Information is supposed to make us smarter, but more often than not, it simply overwhelms us.

This program is for you if you feel like you’re drowning in data and unsure which data to use to drive your company initiatives.

The truth is that the amount of data available to help run your business is greater than ever before. To effectively use this information, managers must consider the practical side of big data…what matters to you is how do you grow and build a team to make smarter decisions.

Much of the information out there just discusses the promise of the data deluge. The challenge is not the volume of data but rather the judgment needed to use it.

This seminar goes beyond the qualitative side of data analysis to explore proven quantitative techniques and technologies for identifying, inventorying and integrating data, so that more informed and reliable business decisions can be made.

Learning Objectives

  • Apply Best Techniques and Cutting Edge Technologies to Organize, Interpret, and Summarize Quantitative Data
  • Create a Process to Analyze Data and Identify Patterns Not Apparent at First Glance
  • Reduce “Analysis Paralysis” and Go from Hard Data to Well-Reasoned Conclusions in Less Time

What Was Learned

  • Specific skills to effectively frame the problem you’re addressing to uncover key opportunities and drive growth
  • Critical marketing steps of orientation necessary before engaging tools and technology
  • How to simply and quickly amplify decision making by separating the signal from the noise
  • A framework for asking the right questions, allowing the ability to link analytics to business strategy

What Was Covered

  • Using data and statistics effectively in business today
  • Improper data manipulations and their consequences
  • Exploring quantitative data collection methods
  • Improving analysis success by effectively utilizing software
  • Understanding regression, trend lines, and scenarios in Excel
  • Utilizing the power of business intelligence software
  • Finding and analyzing data patterns, trends, and fluctuations
  • Interpreting and translating data into decisions

Who Attended

Over 80 business professionals who needed to learn more about the basic tools to quantitatively and accurately analyze the mountains of data that come across their desk each minute of every day.

Section One

Big Data—It’s Not Just Size

  • Describe the Importance of Effectively Analyzing Big Data in Business Today
  • Come up with a Data Map to Analyze the Big Data in your business.
  • Establish Clear Objectives When Analyzing Big Data
  • Recognize and Apply Various Data Collection Methods
  • Identify and Resolve Problems Associated with Data Collection
  • Discuss the difference between Data Warehouses and Data Lakes
  • Determine when to use Data Blending in your analysis

Section Two

Analysis—Using Business Intelligence Tools

  • Assess Your Current Analytics Culture
  • Describe the Issues and Trends in Today’s Analytics Field
  • Optimize your use of MS Excel for Big Data analytics
  • Discuss the concept of Data Visualization
  • Utilize BI Tools like Tableau Public
  • Build a Business Dashboard Prototype

Section Three

Interpretation—Assessing Results

  • Articulate the Importance of Accurately Interpreting Data
  • Determine and Analyze Risk, Uncertainty, and Probability
  • Spot Patterns, Trends, and Fluctuations Through Correlation, Regression, and Descriptive Statistics
  • Understand when to employ Descriptive, Predictive or Prescriptive Analytics
  • Build Data Models

Section Four

The Art of Presenting Big Data

  • Apply a Process to Present Big Data Clearly
  • Select the Appropriate Presentation Format to Communicate Your Findings Effectively to Your Audience
  • Master the Power of Enchantment
  • Use Findings from Big Data to Drive Decisions Within Your Organization

Too often people dive into the data only to be lost in haze of data.

This discussion will be pragmatic and immediately applicable to analysts, professional using analytics and managers of analysts across all industries.

Analytics Training – DMAIPH in partnership with Ariva Events Management, offers a wide range of analytics centric training solutions for professionals and students via public, in-house, on-site, and academic settings. We tailor each training event to meet the unique needs of the audience. If you need empowerment and skills enhancement to optimize the use of analytics in your organization, we are here to help. Contact DMAIPH now at or connect with me directly to set up a free consultation on which of our DMAIPH analytics training solutions is best for you.

3 Tips to Maximize the Potential in Your Data

Data is the lifeblood of the 21st Century business.

If you aren’t using your business data to optimize your processes, increase your profits and fuel your decision-making, then you are behind the times.

So let me give you 3 tips to maximize the potential in your business data.

Tip #1 – Map Out Your Data Environment

Tip #2 – Identify Your Data Geeks

Tip #3 – Get On the Same Page

Most businesses don’t have a good map of how their data flows through their business. Just about every employee, every team and every location is stock full of data that can be useful. But, in most businesses there is little understanding of how it is all connected.

You need to know how data is acquired, how it is stored, and how it is accessed. How often is it refreshed? How clean is it? How valid is it? If you have answers to these questions you can build a map of your business data. Like a flowchart.

As you map out the flow of data in your business, you can also identify the data geeks in your business. The ones who understand the value of using data to make decisions. The curious ones who ask a lot of questions. You need to empower these people.

Once you have a data map and you have brought together your data geeks, then you need to get them all on the same a page.

I’d suggest bringing in a consultant who can give you a new and unbiased perspective on how to deal with analytics roadblocks. Places, processes and people in the business who aren’t in synch.


Another option would be to send the team to a training class facilitated by an expert… someone like me.

If you need a place for your team of data geeks to get outside the box an get on the same page, I will be facilitating a training class on February 21 in Ortigas.  Send us an email @ to sign up or request more details. 

I will help you come up with a analytics action plan to help you start taking advantage of the business data you have in order to increase efficiency and grow profits.

Analytics Training – DMAIPH offers a wide range of analytics centric training solutions for professionals and students via public, in-house, on-site, and academic settings. We tailor each training event to meet the unique needs of the audience. If you need empowerment and skills enhancement to optimize the use of analytics in your organization, we are here to help. Contact DMAIPH now at or connect with me directly to set up a free consultation on which of our DMAIPH analytics training solutions is best for you.