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Lavaman 2019 Triathlon – We did It Together!

Mona Rakibe, Director Product Manager, Reltio

Triathlon is a great opportunity to test your endurance, if you have an extreme determination coupled with rigorous training. We had the determination, but always lacked time for training. When Lavaman 2019 Triathlon Relay in Hawaii was announced, Anastasia, who is a multiple time triathlete suggested I participate. At first this seemed a ridiculous idea, first I was just returning from maternity leave and still getting used to changes in life with the newborn, secondly I had not done any sports in years and fitness was at rock bottom! Anastasia was determined and convinced me. Given that she just had a baby and was thinking of doing this within 6 months of having a baby gave me some courage. I was on-board. Doing it as a relay was a fantastic idea, as we could focus on individual events and also motivate each other. Now we needed our last partner, we both knew who that would be. Convincing Carina was easier than we anticipated.

Anastasia Zamyshlyaeva, Carina Alabanza and I got together to do the triathlon relay as “One Reltio” team, and do this for a good cause of raising a fund for The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS).  The triathlon distance followed international Olympic guidelines: A swim of 0.93 miles (1.5 kilometers), a bicycle route of 24.8 miles (40 kilometers) and a run of 6.2 miles (10 kilometers). Anastasia picked swimming, Carina agreed to do biking, and I chose running.

Planning is always the easiest part of any project, they say. So true! But remember, we were determined. The three of us were representing Reltio, and we wanted to give our best. The Olympian task (pun intended) needed disciplined training.  We joined Team in Training (TNT), the endurance sports training program where volunteers train to complete a triathlon while fundraising to support the fight against blood cancer. .We three had a fundraising goal of USD 6000 as a team and together we raised USD 6250 using donations from friends and family including many Reltio employees. Reltio also encouraged us by matching all the donations through our corporate matching program. Globally, the Team in Training group raised over $1.5 million to fund research on cancer and we feel honored to have done our bit.

Training regularly was not easy. We had our best days and worst days. But giving up was never on our minds. As we started clocking better time and longer distance, we were inching closer to our goal. The Waikoloa Hawaii weather was encouraging, our families were supportive, and of course Reltians were continuously cheering.

On March 31st, the triathlon day, we started at 5AM from our hotel lobby towards the Race point. The day was sunny with a cool ocean breeze. Anastasia began swimming at 8AM from Anaeho’omalu Bay at Waikoloa Beach. Amidst applauds from supporters, she comfortably completed her stretch, a couple of bumps notwithstanding.  

Carina was ready with her White Cervelo and zoomed past the spectators enthusiastically. Cycling 40 kilometers on a perfect warm bright day is fun but also challenging. The delightful cycling course overlooking the ocean and lava rocks certainly helped. I took the baton from her at the transition location and began running. The midday sun was getting harsher but the beautiful beach trail and cheering supporters throughout the trail were boosting my morale all the way. The finish line beckoned as I completed my final lap and we all were so jubilant!  We did it! We did it together! Our families were waiting at the finish line to celebrate our victory.

Running home together with family hand-in-hand, Carina’s son asked, “Why are you so happy, we didn’t get first place.” Our hearts were filled with joy when we replied that winning was never important to us, it was about trying your best, giving your all, and never quitting. And doing it as ONE! One Reltio !

With the motivation and inspiration support from TNT, friends and family, and fellow Reltians cheering on the chat channel, we were never alone. We completed the Triathlon by each beating our personal best time.  What a thrilling experience it was! We are already getting ready for Lavaman 2020!

An Inspiring Evening Celebrating Women in Technology

I attended my first PDX Women in Tech (PDXWIT) networking event located at the new moovel Group North America headquarters in Portland. The theme for this event was “Simple machines: using your tools to leverage your career” and the conversation starter was “What’s your favorite tech tool?”

For the next couple of hours, I enjoyed wonderful catering, quick presentations and interesting conversations with women and men in tech, not only about their favorite tech tool, but also about what tech companies could do to forge more diverse and inclusive workforces.

The Spirit of Women’s History Month is Alive and Well:
Megan Bigelow, Co-Founder & President at PDXWIT, acknowledged Mildred Dresselhaus, the “Queen Of Carbon” and trailblazer who developed wider opportunities for women in science and engineering. Mildred was the first woman awarded the National Medal of Science in Engineering and to become a fully tenured professor at MIT.

Flexibility Matters for a Diverse Workforce:
Sadhana Shenoy, Chief Operating Officer at moovel Group North America, provided an introduction to moovel and recommended flexible work arrangements to enable women to better balance and achieve their professional and personal aspirations. She stated that encouraging more women to become leaders in the business world is a business imperative. Her advice for women working in tech include: be assertive, trust the value that you bring, ask for what you want and participate to encourage others to do so as well. At Reltio, we promote diversification through a flexible remote working culture that encourages employees to commute less and get more done.

Use Gender Neutral Words to Invite Inclusion:
Farrah Campbell, Customer & People Operations at Reflect Technologies, shared the challenges she faces with changing the tone of the company to invite inclusion. Masculine language in job advertisements and the workplace leads to less anticipated belongingness and job interest among women. Tech companies can best address this challenge by seeking gender neutral words that are less associated with stereotypical attributes.

Reltio Redwood Shores Conference Rooms

Reltio Redwood Shores Conference Rooms

Embrace Non-traditional Backgrounds:
Caito Scherr, Software Engineer at New Relic, gave a presentation about the tools and advice that helped her achieve her career goals and break into tech from a non-technical background. A Theatre and Dance major in college, she worked in hospital administration and pet health before returning to her childhood passion of becoming an inventor and engineer.

Caito gave me some examples of how New Relic has laid a strong foundation for inclusion and diversity: setting up a floor named after math, science and technology contributors of all ethnicities and genders, creating and improving career tracks for engineers with non-traditional backgrounds (like code schools) and arranging activities that are outside of “nerd tropes” to name a few. Here at Reltio, we also chose to name our conference rooms after famous female scientists to reinforce our commitment towards women in technology.

Tech Companies with Diverse and Inclusive Workforces do Exist:
Ashvin Sawhney, Senior Corporate Recruiter at Aruba, a Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE) company, was one of the many talent scouts looking to find qualified candidates that evening. HPE has a strong commitment to diversity recruiting, which is reflected in the strong representation of women in all areas of the business.

There was no shortage of people to talk to–I even ran into acquaintances that I met at non-related social gatherings. When I shared my experiences about joining Reltio–listed as one of Fortune’s top 30 best workplaces in technology, and a work culture that follows Jacob Morgan’s philosophy about The Evolution of the Employee, I received responses such as “progressive” and “what could be better?” What could be better is if more people join us towards building a more diverse and inclusive company that we can all be proud of. 

Celebrating 4 Years at Reltio: My Thoughts on Working at a Successful Startup

By Gary Ryan, VP Partner Success, Reltio

I recently marked my four year anniversary at Reltio and I thought I would share some reflections on my experience and why I believe Reltio is succeeding despite the long odds every tech startup faces.

Reltio is my first experience working at a tech startup company in a 40+ year working career that has spanned multiple job functions and sectors. Four years ago I had no thought or desire to go to work for a startup. But the decision was a no brainer when I had the good luck to meet Reltio’s founder Manish Sood, understand his vision, and saw firsthand the power of the SaaS data-driven platform the Reltio team had built. I knew I wanted to be part of the Reltio team and I would always regret it if I didn’t invest my time and use every selling skill I had to convince them to let me join.

My experience over the last four years has been, by far, the most challenging, exciting, and rewarding working experience that I have had in my professional life. This is mostly the outcome of working with an incredible team of people all focused on the same goal. Winning in the market, growing exponentially, and receiving industry acknowledgement doesn’t hurt either. Ultimately, however, the best part of the experience is making a difference and providing business value for our customers. I spent too many years selling and delivering products and services that yielded very little measureable value to my customers.

Here are my key lessons learned for anyone thinking of joining a tech start up:

1.     I totally underestimated the effort and dedication required to be successful with a startup. However much work you think it will be, double it.

2.     Working for a startup is not for everyone. This is mostly due to my first lesson learned. You need to be at the right point in your life to be able to deliver on what is needed to succeed.

3.      Our CEO Manish Sood talks about how building a successful startup is like climbing Mount Everest. There are many routes you can take to the summit and sometimes you will need to stop, go back, and try a different route. But the most important thing is to never give up and to keep moving forward. If you are invested in working for a startup, give it everything you have and be mentally prepared for setbacks.

4.     Do not go to work for a startup unless you believe 100% in the vision of the company and the product. Otherwise it will be very difficult to sustain your focus and effort.

So why is Reltio succeeding? I believe there are five key reasons:

  • Vision

  • Execution

  • Culture

  • Customers

  • Partners


Not every great idea will yield a successful startup, but without a great product vision, the odds against success will be very very long. Reltio’s founder and CEO Manish Sood is simply the smartest person I have ever had the pleasure to work with. He has an unbelievable ability to understand what drives customer value from a data driven perspective and then map those requirements to solution architectures that use new and upcoming technologies. Put simply, Manish is the reason why I decided that I had to be part of the Reltio story. I believed in him and his vision and I could instantly see Reltio’s place in the market.


A great product vision can easily fail without good execution. Making the right decisions on technologies, personnel, investors, business strategy, and on and on and on is critical to achieve success. Reltio is extremely lucky to have an incredible leadership team. But more importantly it comes down to the founder again, Manish. It was clear from the very beginning that he had an incredible product vision, but what has amazed me has been the skills and expertise he uses to continuously make the right business decisions.


It is an incredible pleasure to work for a company with a culture that really cares about their employees and puts all their effort in focusing on the right things like customer and partner success. This culture comes from the top down and again is the result of having the right management team. It is this culture that allows us to attract and keep the team we need to succeed and keep our customers benefiting from our platform.


Very early in our history we had the extreme good fortune to find a few select customers to embrace a shared vision with us, placing significant confidence in us to power their critical business initiatives. They partnered with us championing us within their own companies, and in the market. In the end, a successful startup is more than just the technology it’s about people and relationships. This is why our core values stress that we treat all of our customers,  partners and employees as family.


Our focus from the beginning was to enable a data driven SaaS platform that our partners would yield business value from by taking their own solutions to market. We knew that we would not be able to scale and to take the needed market share without a strong partner network. Again, we had the extreme good fortune to find a handful of partners early in our growth who believed in our product vision. And just like our early customer story, our partner sponsors supported us and stuck by us. Today, the vast majority of our SaaS subscriptions are driven by our partner network.

All of these critical factors needed to come into play for us to achieve the success we have and to continue to grow. I feel extremely lucky to be part of the Reltio story.

Personalization Meets Innovation with Video Marketing Awards Recognition

The Reltio marketing team was honored at Viewtopia’s annual Video Marketing Awards (VMA) in the category of Best Personalized Video Campaign.

We are always on the lookout for new, innovative ways to build awareness and drive interest in Reltio. As part of our outbound efforts, we developed via a top-of-funnel awareness campaign using personalized video technology from Vidyard. 

One critical element was the reliable data that needed to be 100% accurate for the personalization to work. Getting the data wrong could have the opposite effect and impact on the personalized videos we intended to send out. 

Of course we “drank our own champagne” and used our very own Reltio Cloud Modern Data Management PaaS, to ensure that the data was reliable.

The results we achieved were amazing, and the recognition at the VMAs were absolutely the icing on the cake.

Best Personalized Video Campaign
Winner: Reltio
Finalists: Veracode, Influitive

Reltio wanted a new way to build awareness and drive interest it its flagship product with a top-of-funnel awareness campaign. The company launched a personalized video campaign targeting 10,000 leads to build awareness and identify their most engaged prospects.

Results: Nearly 30% of all individuals who opened the email clicked through to watch the video. That marked a 10X increase in click-through rates compared to their average marketing campaign. Reltio is now launching a second personalized video campaign as part of its account-based marketing effort.

Reltio for Good @Second Harvest Food Bank

We’ve been growing rapidly and have so many new faces joining Reltio over the last few months. Our Redwood Shores, CA office in particular has seen additions across the board in finance, product management, engineering, services, sales and more.

One of our new PMs Naveen Gupta (thanks again Naveen!) organized a team outing to the Second Harvest Food Bank in San Carlos.

As you may have gathered, this particular blog post has nothing to do with modern data management, data-driven apps or any other form of technology. It’s just a post about teamwork, collaboration and supporting in a small way for a day our local community and the great work that organizations like Second Harvest do.

Our team of 16 participated in putting together boxes of canned goods, and a mixture of non-perishables which we sealed and put on pallets for delivery. Together with another company who were also there for the afternoon, we were able to pack what must have been over 800 to 1000 boxes. Each box had to weigh around 15lbs for the first run, then 28lbs for the next.

It was a challenge getting the boxes to weigh just right at the start, but we soon got the hang of it. Our founder and CEO Manish Sood in fact got a record eight x 28lb boxes correctly weighed on the scale in a row!

We had a great time together and we will definitely be returning to support Second Harvest again in the future. Please check out the video, and do support your local community food drive this holiday. They need everyone to have a “CAN” do attitude.

Final Results are in! The Winners of Data-driven Madness 2016 are …

========== April 18, 2016 ==========

And the final results are in! The winning business initiative or technology of the 2016 Data-driven Madness tournament is …

Reliable High Quality Data

winning easily over Master Data Management in the technology region. Final results and full bracket below. Thank you everyone for participating. In summary, this tournament indicated that Reliable High Quality Data is a business imperative, that is crucial as the foundation for any predictive analytics or machine learning for relevant insights. It also showed that Master Data Management, a stalwart technology and discipline for over 10 years cannot stand alone as the only offering to meet business demands. In fact, for many Reliable High Quality Data now goes beyond just MDM. 

We will be publishing a full interactive infographic of the tournament shortly. Contact us to indicate your interest in receiving a copy.

The winner of the apple watch is Ryan McCormick with a narrow 3 point advantage over ericbless who receives a $50 amazon gift card for finishing second. As does Charles Joseph who won the random drawing among all participants. Thank you all for taking part in Reltio Data-driven Madness 2016!


========== April 11, 2016 ==========

The championship game is here! 

Anyone can still enter because Championship correct selections score 10 points each! Also as a bonus, a random drawing will occur on everyone who votes for the championship winner for another mystery prize.

Here is the near final look at the bracket the voting percentages and participant leader boards. Scroll down for the highlights of the round and instructions on how to play. Click here to enter your selections for the Championship game.

And the updated leaderboard. It’s a 3 horse race, with Ryan McCormick taking the lead.  ericbless in second and is only 3 points away. Big Dan scored 0 in the final four and drops to 3rd.


Highlights from the Final Four round (Feel free to provide your thoughts in comments below)

Business Region 1 vs Region 2

  • #1 Reliable High Quality Data won easily over #1 Relevant Insights Delivered. Indicating that accurate data was a prerequisite for insights.

Technical Region 1 vs Region 2

  • #1 Master Data Management narrowly squeezed by #1 Predictive Insights showing that a changing of the guard is nearly here. Many expect MDM to be standard moving forward, so the votes reflected that assumption. However MDM was still too critical and not widely adopted to be beaten this year

Preview of Championship game

It’s all about data quality and reliability in the final match up. The question remaining to be answered is that if business expects #1 Reliable High Quality Data, is #1 Master Data Management the only and the best way to deliver in this modern data management era.

Results will be published and the champion crowned at the end of the week. Voting closes Friday 12am PT.

========== April 6, 2016 ==========

Even though March Madness is in the books,  Reltio Data-driven Madness 2016 continues and for the first time in history, all #1 seeds have made it through to the final four!

Anyone can still enter because Final Four correct selections score 5 points each.

Here is the latest look at the bracket the voting percentages and participant leader boards. Scroll down for the highlights of the round and instructions on how to play. Click here to enter your selections for the Final Four.

And the updated leaderboard with “Big Dan” still holding serve with a slim 2 point advantage over Ryan McCormick.  Fernando drops to 4th with a DNP in the last round, ericbless gains ground and is only 5 points away. Charles Joseph is still mathematically in the running for the Apple Watch!

Some highlights from the Elite Eight round (Feel free to provide your thoughts in comments below)

Business Region 1

  • #1 Reliable High Quality Data blanked #2 Always Available in a Villanova vs. Oklahoma style beat down

Business Region 2

  • #1 Relevant Insights pulled away from #6 Recommended Actions highlighting that people want to know what’s going on with the data

Preview of Final Four Business Region 1 vs Region 2

Battle of #1 seeds in the business region begs the question. Is it enough to get #1 Relevant Insight? Or does the data have to be #1 Reliable and High Quality for the insights to be correct and matter?

Tech Region 3

  • #1 Master Data Management  trumped #6. Graph Database but not by an overwhelming margin. Many of the crowd realized that some of the best MDM platforms today already have Graph embedded  

Tech Region 4

  • #1 Predictive Analytics squeezes past #2 Data-driven Apps showing some indecision. Do you want just analytics and the #1 seed? Or #2 Data-driven Apps that are both analytical and operational in nature? This was one of the best games of the tournament with analytics winning out.

Preview of Final Four Tech Region 1 vs Region 2

In almost a carbon copy of the Business Region semi-finals, the Battle of Tech Region #1 seeds begs the question. Is it enough to use #1 Predictive Analytics? Or does the data have to be based on a #1 MDM foundation for reliable data quality for the insights to be correct and matter?

========== April 1, 2016 ==========

It’s down to the Elite Eight in Reltio Data-driven Madness 2016. Surprisingly all #1 seeds have made it through so far. Now it’s crunch time.

Anyone can still enter because Round 4 correct selections score 4 points each.

Here is the latest look at the bracket the voting percentages and participant leader boards. Scroll down for the highlights of the round and instructions on how to play. Click here to enter your selections for the Elite Eight.

And the updated leaderboard with “Big Dan” still holding serve with a slim 1 point advantage over Fernando. Ryan McCormick has dropped down to 5th (UPDATED due to a scoring/identification error Ryan’s Sweet Sixteen score has been updated and he is still in the running), ericbless and Charles Joseph are all within striking distance of the Apple Watch!

Some highlights from the Sweet Sixteen round (Feel free to provide your thoughts in comments below)

Business Region 1

  • #1 Reliable High Quality Data cruised into the Elite Eight with a dominant performance over cinderella #13 Team Collaboration
  • #2 Always Available survived a scare from #3 Closed-loop ROI

The chance for a final four berth pits #1 vs #2 in a fascinating conundrum. Is access to data anytime, anywhere more important? Or does that data have to be reliable in order for it to matter? 

Business Region 2

  • #1 Relevant Insights crushed #5 Easy-to-use with their starters resting in the 2nd half for the potential face off with #6 Recommended Actions
  • #6 Recommended Actions trumped #2 Real-time delivery in an upset, proving that getting support and guided help wins over speed on insight in this case

#1 vs #6  match-up here is almost too close to call. Do you need relevant insight first, before you get recommended actions? Or will you trust recommended actions to be based on relevant data and insight?

Tech Region 3

  • #1 Master Data Management a crowd voting favorite shimmied into the Elite Eight, over underdog #13 Semantic Analysis.  Chants of “MDM, MDM” could be heard in the crowd. Coach of #13 Semantic Analysis was quoted as saying “We’re a young technology, we’ll be back next year”
  • #6. Graph Database outlasted #7. Machine Learning in OT, with 7 lead changes in the final minutes.

In another #1 vs #6 game, the analysts feel that #1 MDM has the edge because all modern data management platforms have built-in Graph capabilities. Meaning that #6 Graph Database can’t possibly win. However those who are on legacy MDM systems, might feel they have to go for #6, but they may encounter scalability issues with typical Graph DB technology when they hit higher volumes.

Tech Region 4

  • #1 Predictive Analytics shut out #4 Elastic Scalability in an absolute drubbing
  • #2 Data-driven Apps won easily over #3 Hybrid Cloud, showing that IT values delivering business facing capabilities over infrastructure preferences

This final tech region 4 game is a doozie. Again who you favor depends on your perspective. Do you want just analytics and the #1 seed? Or #2 Data-driven Apps that are both analytical and operational in nature? This is one of the most anticipated games of the tournament.

========== March 24th, 2016 ==========

It’s Sweet Sixteen time in Reltio Data-driven Madness 2016. Not surprisingly all #1 seeds have made it through so far. Now it becomes a true test.

Anyone can still enter because Round 3 correct selections score 3 points each.

Here is the latest look at the bracket the voting percentages and participant leader boards. Scroll down for the highlights of the round and instructions on how to play. 

And the updated leaderboard with “Big Dan” holding a slim 1 point advantage over Fernando. Ryan McCormick, ericbless and Charles Joseph are all within striking distance of the Apple Watch!

Some highlights from the second round (Feel free to provide your thoughts in comments below)

Business Region 1

  • #2 Always Available had to survive a massive scare to beat out upstart #7 Free Text Search. It was looking like a lost cause but pulled off a Texas A&M style comeback to win in double OT
  • #13 Team Collaboration’s Cinderella run continues! Easily blowing away #12 Role-based Access, who in the last round pulled off their own upset.

Business Region 2

  • #1 Relevant Insight Delivered won easily over #8 Self-service Reporting. The crowd was heard chanting “You got Served!” at the #8 seed, proving that the fans want things automatically delivered on a platter
  • #6 Recommended Actions Provided was taken to overtime by favorite #3 Third-party Data Sources setting up a clash with #2 Real-time Delivery in the Sweet Sixteen

Tech Region 3

  • #13 Semantic Analysis a relatively new first timer to the tournament beat crowd favorite #12 Columnar Database in a sort of semi-structured vs. structured showdown
  • #6 Graph database continued to thump the competition, pushing aside #14 Schema-less
  • #7 Machine Learning ousted #2 Workflow with a barrage of well judged shots, that not surprisingly got better as the game wore on, and they received more data 

Tech Region 4

  • #1 Predictive analytics continued it’s date with destiny, even predicting in the post game conference that it would cruise into the final four
  • #3 Hybrid cloud showed that it was twice as nice by beating #6 Public cloud
  • #2 Data-driven apps once again destroyed its opponent and it wasn’t even close

========== March 20th, 2016 ==========

Round 1 of Data-driven Madness is complete! While there were some tough matchups, there were relatively few upsets. Most of the seeded teams moved on to the second round, where competition will now prove to be tougher.

You can still enter because Round 2 correct selections score 2 points each.

Here is the latest look at the bracket the voting percentages and participant leader boards. Scroll down for instructions on how to play. 

And here is the leaderboard …

Some highlights from the first round (Feel free to provide your thoughts in comments below)

Business Region 1

  • #13 Team Collaboration pulled a mild upset over #4 Structured Processes proving that democratization and input rules
  • #7 Desktop Access beat #10 Mobile access in a last minute thriller

Business Region 2

  • #3 Third party sources won easily over #Social Media/Public sources indicating that everyone still as a little distrust over uncurated data

Tech Region 3

  • #12 Columnar Database beat #5 Relational Database handily in an upset, signalling a changing of the guard
  • #6 Graph Database thumped #11 Document Database in a rout, in a battle of newcomers
  • #14 Schema-less handily beat #3 Fixed Data Model, showing that flexibility is king

Tech Region 4

  • #1 Predictive Analytics moved on by beating #16 Business Intelligence, illustrating that it’s better to look forward, than back
  • #8 Microservices crushed #9 ETL, indicating that given the horse power batch isn’t really relevant anymore
  • #6 Public Cloud beat out #11 Private Cloud. Next round’s match up between #6 Public cloud vs #3 Hybrid cloud (who vanquished #14 On-premises) should be fascinating
  • #2 Data-driven Apps destroyed #15 Process-driven Apps, no surprise as they are the future of the enterprise and strong favorites in the tournament

========== Challenge kickoff and instructions March 12th, 2016 ==========

It’s that time of the year. Just like March Madness, Data-driven Madness has brackets, and an ultimate champion. Some of the head-to-head match ups are “lay-ups” (pun intended), and others are a little “I’m on a desert island and I have to choose one” hard.

To play:

1. Fill in the final selection championship round here. Select the winner of each of the head-to-heads by forecasting and selecting the winner of the second round. Your selections will also cast a vote for each selection, and the highest number of votes for each will move on to the next round.

2. You get a point each time your selection moves on. After each round is completed, you will be given the chance to select the winners of the next head-to-head rounds. Second round winners count for 2 points and so on.

3. The winner of the Apple Watch will be the person with the most number of points at the end of the tournament. Unlike March Madness, you can join at any time until the end of the tournament when all the results will be tabulated.

4. Tie breaker on points will be determined by the person who selected the Champion, and then further tie breakers will be by the number of correct entries in the final four and previous rounds.

Random Thoughts, Predictive Analytics and Apple Watches

Last week my colleague Ajay Khanna and I were at the Innovation Enterprise (IE) Predictive Analytics Summit. This was our second event in the IE series this year, having also sponsored the IE Big Data Innovation event in Las Vegas last month.

In both cases we entertained the attendees, and gave them a chance to win an Apple watch at favorable odds. All they had to do was visit our booth with a playing card distributed from the special Reltio deck, and if they pulled out the same card from a full 52-card deck, they won the watch. So they had 1 in 52 chances to win. (Shout out to Kathleen Calderwood, our stellar Dir. of Field Marketing for her genius game idea) 

With the over 200 attendees at the first event, we anticipated that we would give away at least one watch, but alas there were no winners. Three quarters of the way through the Predictive Analytics event and still no one had pulled out a winning card.

Then Ajay did it. He turned to me and said, “Is there a limit to the number of winners? What happens if we get 4 correct draws?”

Is there a limit to the number of winners? What happens if we get 4 correct draws?

— Ajay “maybe I should not have said that” Khanna

Me: “Then we give out 4 watches, that’s the promise of the game. It’s random. All cards remain in the deck, and there is no reliable data foundation, or previous history to improve the chances of winning … besides that will NEVER happen.”

As they say, if you think of it … whether it’s the universe of energy in the world, as described in the now infamous book “The Secret”, or just random chance, immediately after the break we had our first winner!

The first gentleman who won, a data scientist was in such disbelief that he demanded to see the full deck to make sure we weren’t fixing the odds in his favor. And even more incredibly, just as I was capturing his details, Ajay was playing the game with another attendee and they correctly selected their card too!

Back-to-back. If you are doing the math, 1 in 52 for the first, combined with 1 in 52 for the second, the odds were 1 in (52*52) = 2704 or 0.037%

Needless to say there was a lot of cheering and hollering at our booth as a mini crowd gathered to see what the commotion was about.

And even more incredibly, the next participants didn’t win, but the second person drew out the card of their colleague as they were standing together. The odds of 3 in a row would have been 1 in 140,608!

So what did we learn at the summit?

  • Random is random, sometimes things will happen when you least expect it
  • However the universe is listening to everything you say or do. If you think it, it will happen
  • People love to win, no surprise, and providing an unbiased reasonable set of odds to win is very much appreciated

But ultimately we had a blast at the event, fun is one of Reltio’s core values. We amused while getting the point across that without reliable data with an accurate view of historical facts, any form of analytics would be futile. You might be able to use the data you have to do predictive analysis, but those predictions would be wrong, and you may just as well put your business at the mercy of the random universe.

If you don’t yet have a reliable data foundation, you can either think good thoughts about your data, and hope the universe rewards you with correct insights; or visit us at our next event, and we’ll show you how to stack the odds in your favor. And if Ajay is there, your chances of winning an Apple watch just went up :-).