Why Your Boss Doesn’t Realize They’re an Asshole

Here’s part of the chapter “Our Greatest Strengths Are Our Greatest Weaknesses” by Gordon Livingston in the criminally under-read Too Late Smart, Too Soon Old: There are certain personality characteristics that are highly correlated with academic and professional success: dedication to work, attention to detail, ability to manage time, conscientiousness. People who have this constellation…

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No one knows anything

It’s really easy to overestimate how much you know about a topic. Even—or especially—if you’re an expert. A lot of academics/psychologists I know or have worked with have a tendency to overlook what Daniel Kahneman called the most common bias: the “What You See is All There Is” bias.   “Moreover, for many current scientific fields,…

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Don’t Eat Fortune’s Cookie: How Michael Lewis Got So Lucky

Michael Lewis, author of Moneyball, Liar’s Poker and a few other books, recently gave a speech at Princeton on, among other things, the role of luck in his success. Reading the full text of the speech, available here, or watching it is well worth the 13 minutes: Long story short: unlike so many, Lewis actually recognizes and acknowledges…

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Make Your Thing and the Butterfly Effect: Why the Real Reasons for Success Always Elude Us

Jesse Thorn, host of Bullseye, recently posted Make Your Thing: 12 Point Program for Absolutely, Positively 1000% No-Fail Guaranteed Success. Like most business advice, it’s loaded with classic survivorship bias. A discussion about the piece on Metafilter is an interesting read, in part because Thorn himself comments as user YoungAmerican. The 12 points he makes:…

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