Grant Lee’s Motorcycle Diary -Taiwan P.2 West Coast

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(Pictures taken 2011 summer)
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The terrain of Taiwan is divided by the Central Mountain Range into two parts: the west and the east. In the west, the majority of the terrains are flat plains. In the east, the scene are primarily made up of mountains and coastlines. the industrial development of Taiwan began from the west, where there are more than 80% of the entire populations residing there, and that Taiwan to be one of the most crowded countries in the world.

I live in Taipei, the northern part of Taiwan, and I began the trip from there. It took me three days finishing east coast. There, I saw more pure scenes, such as seas and undeveloped places. In the west, the scene were replaced by buildings, people, vehicles, and things you can find in modern cities.

Riding motorcycle to travel seem relaxing, but it is not totally my case. Everyday I needed to sit for more than eight hours riding my bike (If you are curious about the model, it is Kymco KTR 150) between 150 to 200 km. It was definitely painful to maintain the posture. At times dehydration happened. But once I arrived at a new place, I could see, listen, and feel the flow of the place, and that kept me awake and inspired me to go on moving. One time I purposely did not follow the map in the tour-book, and immediately after I found myself stuck in somewhere that didn’t allow motorcycle to enter.

I consider this trip to be the best one in my 28-year-old life so far because it was very tough yet I learned so much more than just riding motorbike. The pictures that I have taken, the views that I have seen, and the people that I have met, change my perceptions about my mother land. People always joke that city kid do not know the beauty of countryside. After this trip, I could proudly say I was no longer one of them. (Hey I traveled around the entire island!)

So, for those of you who are reading this blog but have never been to Taiwan. If you ask me what’s the best way to travel here? Well, you already know the answer, don’t you!

Grant Lee’s Motorcycle Diary -Taiwan P.1 East Coast

grant lee motorcycle diary part one

Taiwan, my hometown, is a small island located in the south east Asia. In 2011 summer, I spent eight-day-seven-night, riding my motorcycle for more than 1500 km around Taiwan. (I literally felt like I lost my hips.) It was a trip of self-enlightenment, self-fulfilling, and self-discovery.Thanks to the trip, I was able to discover the beauty of the island like never before. Here, I want to show you what I had seen during the trip. Starting from the east coast, I hope you would the pictures and perhaps, plan on visiting *Formosa sometime in the near future.

*Formosa: Spanish Formosa was a Spanish colony established in the north of Taiwan from 1626 to 1642. The Portuguese were the first Europeans to discover the island of Taiwan, and named it Formosa due to the beautiful landscape as seen from the sea. Source: Wikipedia

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葛蘭特李 的籃球日誌 #9 Kevin Love vs. Andrew Wiggins: 現在 vs. 未來

對籃球迷來說,這暑假自由市場上的交易,簡直比好萊塢電影還要精采,而其中,最牽動NBA戰力版圖與球迷神經的,莫過於LeBron James I’m coming home的故事了。

在James宣布加盟後,加上選秀會選到的Andrew Wiggins,Cleveland Cavaliers的1-3號成為各隊的夢靨。目前,名單上有Kyrie Irving、Dion Waiters、LeBron James以及Andrew Wiggins。這個組合無論攻守,在聯盟都可以排到前三的影響力,但是,4、5號則僅有會抓籃板的Tristan Thompson及進攻犯規製造大師Anderson Varejão,這陣容,比Miami Heat的內線還要Miami Heat。難不成,又要James去打四號、打小球嘛?我想,James既然決定回騎士,不會沒有想到這個問題。最近有消息指出,James主動聯絡Kevin Love,提出邀請入隊,一起拼搶總冠軍的提議。

要Minnesota Timberwolves交易球隊一哥Kevin Love,提出交易的球隊勢必要有足夠的籌碼來談,剛好,騎士隊就有,這個人,正是六月剛選進來的新一代加拿大飛人Andrew Wiggins。

Love vs. Wiggins,現在 vs.未來。到底騎士該選哪個呢?而哪個決定,對Love跟Wiggins最好呢?以下,我從五個不同角度來分析這些問題。

Kevin Love能夠替騎士帶來什麼?
Love是1980年至今,賽季場均25分12籃板次數第二多的人,總共兩次。第一名?Shaq O’Neal的四次。Love可以替騎士帶來的東西很多。首先,他優秀的外線能力能吸引敵隊內線球員到外線,拉大空間,讓James複製在熱火切入傳導的打法。再者,他優秀的低位單打能力,可以吸引包夾讓Irving跟其他射手群有舒服的出手空間。此外,他的籃板與長傳能力可以增加快攻機會,讓James獲得很多省力的easy basket。單就進攻來看,Love+Irving+James,破壞力甚至可能比熱火的LCD更強大。

Wiggins的發揮空間
現有陣容下,騎士新球季的前四得分手會是James、Irving、Waiters然後才是Wiggins。身為球隊的第四得分選擇,他拿到球的次數將大幅減少。過去一年在Kansas大學的比賽,他不斷被質疑進攻慾望不夠強烈的聲音沒有少過,現在,他連第三選擇都不是,很難說不會又有不投的現象。在這情況下,試問,大家對Wiggins的期望數據是什麼?我預估,他將場均10分5板2助攻1鍋1抄截的成績,而這成績依他的天份來說,是非常浪費的。他的球技還沒定型,適合的位置可以在2號或3號,但在騎士隊,3號位前面檔著James,他大多數時間只能打二號。總之,對於他未來的發揮空間,心理素質的培養,我認為,現階段的騎士是不適合他的。

Dion Waiters與Wiggins的排擠效應
若Love來,Dion Waiters跟Wiggins的排擠效應將有效紓緩。Waiters是個需要有球在手的得分後衛,讓他跟Wiggins一起競爭2號位,非常浪費兩名球員的天份跟進攻能力。Waiters強在進攻的外線與切入,而Wiggins現階段則是防守的橫向移動與火鍋能力,兩人優缺點明顯。這兩人放在很多隊都可以打先發35分鐘以上,而放在同一隊,不免顯得浪費。Wiggins若換來Love,Waiters可以在James的穿針引線下獲得火力釋放,不用擔心上場時間問題。此外,他不安的情緒將有效獲得安撫,可以心無旁驚的專攻二號位。若需要,讓他轉任第六人,帶領板凳有效減低先發不在場上的得分缺口,也可行。

拼現在?還是著眼未來?
現階段,Wiggins能夠替騎士帶來的及戰力,在於防守端,但他能防守的位置,James剛好也可以做到。然而,Love所能帶來的內線戰力,卻是Wiggins所無法相比。LeBron今年將滿30歲,正值生涯高峰,能夠拼總冠軍的時間,就是現在,而Wiggins才19歲,球技成熟還需要兩到三年的時間。因此,從拼戰總冠軍的角度來看,Love會比較適合。但有人可能會說,若James兩年約滿後閃人,球隊沒了Wiggins,豈不陪了夫人又折兵?!我認為不會。因為若Love來,肯定不會只想要拼一季就閃人,因此極有可能在14-15球季後跟騎士簽下新的合約,到時就算James走人,球隊有Irving跟Love,在東區也是強隊。若Love14-15球季約滿簽下*一年約(註),而James跟Love兩人16年約滿後同時走人呢?我認為這機率不大。

加入騎士對Kevin Love所帶來的效益
從2008年加入灰狼隊至今,已過六年,這六年,Love證明入選過三次明星賽,且證明自己是聯盟前三名的大前鋒好手,但這六年,灰狼從未進入過季後賽。獨善其身跟刷數據之名,開始跟他的名字連上。加盟騎士,在James身旁,Love可望一嚐季後賽滋味,且也可以證明自己不是只有在例行賽才能發揮。以經濟效應來看,在北大荒的灰狼,Love打的再好,所能夠帶來的經濟效應也是有限,但在James旁邊打球,他將獲得前所未有的關注程度,所能獲得的經濟效應也會較高。

站在球隊即戰力的考量,我認為騎士隊必須要忍痛交易Andrew Wiggins,因為Wiggins的未來,沒有人說的準,而James跟Love現在的能力,卻是有可能讓騎士一舉躍進成為角逐冠軍的競爭者!

註: NBA 2016年後將與電視台簽下新的合約,因為近年來NBA季後賽的收視率升高,NBA將可望提高轉播權利金的金額。到時球員的薪資幅度會上漲,這是為什麼James只跟騎士隊千兩年約的原因,因為到16年,他能簽的頂約將比現在高。

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Vblog – Wake Forest Retail Innovation Challenge Team Aurilie

One of the very first lessons I learned in MBA was “elevator pitch”. What’s elevator pitch? Basically, it is a short summary to concisely describe one object to your audience. The object can be a business solution, a personal introduction, a picture…etc. The speech is usually within one or two minutes.

In business schools, MBA students are trained to deliver elevator pitch. We have to be able to say who we are, what we do, and why our products work efficiently and effectively. (Products can be a person, a business idea, or anything.)

Though elevator pitch is called “elevator” pitch, I had never seen anyone doing it in the real elevator until Wake Forest Retail Innovation Challenge.

Wake Forest Innovation Challenge was one of the most exciting and unforgettable memories I have ever experienced in the MBA school: Pitching new business plan idea in the real elevators to venture capitalists and industry experts. The experience was simply overwhelming and breathe-taking. I wrote a blog post detailing the experience, check it out in: Wake Forest Retail Innovation Challenge.

Unlike the old post with lots of words, this time, I want to show you what it feels like in the real elevators! Check out the following videos presented by the Retail Innovation Center at Wake Forest University. I was getting bumped while watching the videos.

(Introduction of the competition)

 

 

(Team Aurélie presented their business plan in the left elevator without judges interruptions)

 

(Team Aurélie presented their business plan in the right elevator with judges interruptions)

 

 

If you are interested to watch more videos about the competition, you can go to the official webpage: http://ric2012.elevatorcompetitionlive.com

Screen Shot 2014-06-22 at 11.22.05 PM(Judith and I presented our business plans to more than 12 venture capitalists and industry experts in the final run.)

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(Team Aurélie members. From left to right, Xiang Bian, Pavarit Boonyasirichok, Judith Liao, and Grant Lee)

Introduction of the team members in Team Aurélie.

*All the videos shown in this blog belong to Retail Innovation Center at Wake Forest University.

New Running Races in Asia, why not?

April 21, 2013, exact 14 months ago today, I was bruised, scraped, cramped, and sore all over my body. It was all because of Tough Mudder! Today, I decided to experience that kind of pain again by attending Spartan Race on July 26 in Washington DC.

Spartan Race is a series of obstacle competitions that test participants’ physical limits and team works. Unlike Tough Mudder’s 12 miles obstacles, Spartan has varying level of difficulties and distances for participants to choose from.

As I finished online registration, one idea came across my mind: Why don’t we have this kind of running event in Asia?

As a running enthusiast, I have attended many running races in Taiwan. They were created with different themes, but the separations from one event to another was not much. After two years of living in the States, I have had many opportunities to closely observe and study Americans’ running races. I came to better realization about the different attitudes between Asians and Americans in running.

Generally speaking, compared to Asians, Americans are more adventurous, love outdoor activities, and consider working out as part of their lives. In here, it is not uncommon to see female runners wearing professional outfits running at noon under 90 degree Fahrenheit on street. It was also quite frequent to see lean men running nude at 5pm across pedestrians on a busy street. These scenes are not easy to find in Taiwan.

Because running is so common here, traditional running races could no longer satisfy American runners. (Traditional running races include 3K, 5K, 10K, half marathon, and marathon.) Thus, the new untraditional running races emerged: Running with a theme. Running with muds, colors, teammates, zombies…etc. Yes people are still running, but they are doing it with more emotion involvements.

Here are some of the non-traditional running races:
The Color Run – The Happiest 5K On The Planet.
The Great Bull Run – Running with the Spanish tradition… with live bulls.
Tough Mudder - Probably The Toughest Event On The Planet
Zombies, Run! – Running to the goal without getting caught by zombies.

“In the past five years, according to the Outdoor Industry Association (OIA), participation in adventure racing was up 211% and ranked in the Top 5 of most popular outdoor activities tried by first-timers.” (For more details, check the article, 2014 State of the Sport – Part I: Non-Traditional Running Events)

As a marketer, I can foresee these non-traditional running races with tremendous growing potentials in Asia. Recently, I found more and more Taiwanese, regardless of age, gender, and occupations, are willing to sacrifice their sleeping time on the weekend, waking up early to join running races in Taiwan. And the latest example was Nike’s new running campaign in Taipei: WERUNTPE : NIKE WOMEN’S HALF MARATHON 2014.

Why am I so positive about the non-traditional running races? I have my own reasons:

1. Sense of fulfillment. The non-traditional running races give participants rare opportunities to do something different. They attend not only a running race, but also a new and different one. From psychology’s stand point, the level of rarity can increase people’ desires to partake events.

2. Self-empowerment. More women are getting active in social and sports events. By participating in non-traditional running races, they gain more confidence in their physicality. They want to prove, guys can do it, we can do it too!

3. Fun really matters. The non-traditional running races add-on one more special ingredient in running, fun. I discussed with my friends who play regularly basketball but rarely run about the reasons of not running, and their responses have one thing in common, boredom. It is not that they can not run, instead it is the fact that boredom makes them shy away from running. The new invented running races will be so much fun. I believe even non-runners will be likely to give it a try.

4. Differentiation. Take a look at those successful brands, and they all do a good job in differentiating themselves from competitors. Nike differentiates itself by nike air, Twitter differentiates itself by constraints in 140 characters, and Egypt differentiates the brand by historical heritages. From the examples above, we can see that these races all have clear a theme, and these clear themes help them in differentiating themselves and telling a story with clear messages.

5. Social Network. Since the introduction of Nike+, Nike enable its users to run together. They don’t need to actually run together, but they can feel in that way. How? The key point is “share”. Users can share their running information on the social networks anytime, anywhere, with all kinds of captions. When people see their friends posting interesting running pictures on the social media, they can like, comment, and get more involved with that post.

Tough Mudder was invented by Harvard Business School students in 2010. They handed in their business plans with pride and confidence to professors, but they received “It will not work” as response. 4 years later, it has become one of the most popular non-traditional running races in the world. If they listened to the advises, this great invention will never happen. As I said in the title, new running races in Asia, why not?

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葛蘭特李 的籃球日誌 #8 悲劇英雄 LeBron James

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When people compare you with the G.O.A.T., your destiny is to win championships.

History never did LeBron James’s justice. People criticize him for everything: not clutch, can’t shoot 3s, can’t shoot free throw, only rely on teammates. In this final series, once again, he proved everyone wrong. Take a look at the total stat of these five games:

LeBron James:
Points: 141
Rebound: 39
Assist: 20
2PT: 57%
3PT: 52%
FT: 83%

The best stat from individual player of the Spurs:
Points: Parker 90
Rebounds: Duncan 50
Assists: Diaw 29

Clearly, It was LeBron James playing against the entire Spurs team.

But the history book will not reveal the stat. It will just mark another loss for LeBron James in the final.(As you can see from the tweet) People will continue to blame on him for whatever they want to.

LeBron James, the tragedy hero, it’s as simple as it is.

Congratulation San Antonio Spurs, classic organization, extraordinary coaching staff, and unselfish good team players. Together it made an unbelievable team. Shout out to Tim Duncan, the best power forward ever play in the NBA. San Antonio Spurs, 2014 NBA champion.

當人們把你跟Michael Jordan做比對,你的命運就是贏得冠軍。
歷史從來就對LeBron James不公。人們無止境地批評他,關鍵時刻不準、不會投外線、只會靠隊友。這系列,再一次,他用表現讓所有人閉嘴。看看這五場比賽的總和數據:

James 141分 39籃板 20助攻 兩分命中率 57% 三分命中率52% 罰球命中率 83%
馬刺球員單一球員最佳數據: Parker 90分 Duncan 50籃板 Diaw 29助攻

明顯地,這是一場James對抗馬刺整隊的戰爭。而他孤軍奮戰,獨立無援。

但歷史不會如此記載,它只會記下另一個冠軍賽失利,而人們會繼續說James有很多幫助、他的隊友非常強大。

LeBron James, 悲劇英雄,簡單明瞭。

恭喜馬刺隊,經典的制服組、偉大的教練團、和一群無私的好球員,造就了一支偉大的冠軍隊。也恭喜Tim Duncan,NBA有史以來最偉大的大前鋒,沒有之一。2014 NBA總冠軍,San Antonio Spurs。

Spurs' Duncan points to the bench during a break in play against the Heat during Game 3 of their NBA Finals basketball playoff in San Antonio

2014 Final Heat V.S. Spurs Game Four Analysis

It was a blow out win for the Spurs tonight. Popovich shows the world why he is still the best coach in the NBA right now. Since he moved Bori Diaw as starter in game 3, Spurs has won two games in large margins. Couple ideas to share for this game.

1. Move the ball, or you die. Number of assists: Spurs 25, Heat 13. Spurs players passed the ball extremely well. Both teams played good D in the first 15 seconds. The difference is that Spurs kept moving the ball to the open man in the remaining 10 seconds, but Heat players played ISO.

2. What’s your game plan, Spoelstra? I don’t understand what Spo’s game plan was…Bosh played well in the 1st quarter, but then he didn’t have balls on hands. LeBron played well in the third quarter and he was benched for the first 4+ minutes in the 4th quarter.

3. Haslem, Jones, and Battier, where are you? These guys can contribute right away and don’t demand balls in hands. Why do you keep using Ray Allen and Rashad Lewis? To beat the Spurs team, the Heat needs everyone to make contributions.

4. Changing defense on LeBron. Last year Spurs dared LeBron to shoot behind 15 foot. This year they let him play ISO. He can’t connect with other players for easy baskets or wide open shots. Taht is supposed to be one of his greatest weapons.

5. Boris Diaw. Boris isn’t the kind of guy who can score 20+ points. He always searches for wide opens for his teammates. He drives to pass, not to score. Don’t understand why Heat players double-team him.

6. Mario Chalmers? Besides offensive fouls and turnovers, I don’t even know he is on the court. He usually put 10+ points and makes couple 3s for the Heat, especially down the stretch, he has the reputation to make big shots. But now what?

7. Closing the quarters. Spurs put much pressures on Heat from the backcourt, that’s usually what the Heat did to the opponents…

8. No fast break and transition= no easy buckets. Heat beats opponents by fast breaks and transition points. You don’t see much in this series.

In short, next game the Heat needs to increase the minutes for Haslem and Jones, and put Battier on Leonard. LeBron has to be on the attack mode and attacks the paints right in the beginning. Wade stops thinking about getting fouls, shoots midrange jumpers if not able to score in the paints. To increase the space, Spo put more shooters on the court and ask them to shoot. Closing the quarters with more pressures on defense. Don’t double team easily. Heat players be disciplined, it is the possession game. One possession at a time. No team in the history has ever come back 1-3, but I still have faith in you guys. Together we will win, let’s go Heat!

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