There is a certain beauty and corresponding reverence to the scientific method. The “problem” is that humans are using it: we are subject to biases and, most importantly, incentive systems. I highlight a Wired article about a young billionaire who has declared “a war on bad science”. His foundation’s work seeks to shed light on the instances of bad use of the scientific method, when data was perhaps ignored and corners perhaps cut. Analysts know what I am talking about: brushing away data points that seem “incoherent” with a theme, weighting independent factors disproportionately… We have all been there, no matter how hard we fight to be 100% rational and intellectually honest.
Booz & Co.’s Strategy + Business publication has a story with their top-3 management books of 2016 – part of a larger story on the best Business books overall. Long-time readers of this blog should be at least a little bit enticed by two of those books: one is by Robert “Persuasion” Cialdini and the other has a title to die for (“The Process Matters: Engaging and Equipping People for Success”).
From the comic strip in the beginning and the poem in the end, and right through the writing and the amazing Cognitive Bias Codex, the post I link to is a can’t-miss story on biases. Congrats to Better Humans’ Buster Benson for the writing and thanks to fellow PLDer Boris Tsimerinov for the heads-up on LinkedIn.
It was my birthday yesterday and I want to share a great information source with my readers: the Valor Intrínseco blog (translation: Intrinsic Value), which joins our blogroll. The blog posts are only in Portuguese, but its subject matter is Value Investing and the material they source is, 99% of the time, in English. I am more than glad to help this “competitor” out because great work always deserves praise – and because there is so much noise in the investment world, we need all the help we can get to hone in on the good stuff.
An update to last week’s post with two reading lists can only mean one thing… more books! These lists are wide-ranging in nature, coming from TED speakers and Farnam Street Blog members, a multidisciplinarian crowd if there ever was any. Enjoy!
Bill Gates wrote a very touching note on the 25th anniversary of his friendship with Warren Buffett. As he points out, he had no idea they would become such friends given their different backgrounds. The lesson here, if there is any, is to be truly humble – intellectually and personally.
Sometimes the obvious must be repeated, and such are the times in Brazil. We highlight a text by Seth Godin on that ageless dilemma: the short run and the long run.
A few weeks ago I posted about coach Claudio Ranieri’s letter regarding his team – Leicester City – and the chance that they would become Premier League champions in England. The odds were 5,000 to 1 in the beginning of the league. They were crowned champions on Monday, for the first time in the team’s history, when Chelsea tied its match with Tottenham (the runner-ups).
Perhaps you’ve heard this story before: the underdogs, the forgotten players, the “outdated” coach and the little guy vs the established, richer, perennial favorite teams. When it goes well, it is the type of story that becomes a feel-good, teary-eyes Hollywood film or – OK, maybe AND these days – a HBS case study. Leicester’s coach, Claudio Ranieri, has just written an open letter called We Do Not Dream. Great stuff. Make your day a little bit better. I know there are already more than a few interesting analyses of Leicester’s success this year; you can google it after the letter gives you a reason to do it.
On December 23rd I posted a few lists of must-read articles, as selected by David Brooks, Tadas Viskantas and Meb Faber. For part two of this Holiday Special we skip articles altogether and link to “The Must-Read SlideShares of 2015”. Very interesting stuff there, and after you choose your presentations of interest there will be plenty of related decks worth checking out.