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jerryking : personal_risk   13

Unintended Consequences of Sexual Harassment Scandals
OCT. 9, 2017 | The New York Times | Claire Cain Miller @clairecm.

In Silicon Valley, some male investors have declined one-on-one meetings with women, or rescheduled them from restaurants to conference rooms. On Wall Street, certain senior men have tried to avoid closed-door meetings with junior women. And in TV news, some male executives have scrupulously minded their words in conversations with female talent.

An unintended consequence of a season of sex scandals, men describe a heightened caution because of recent sexual harassment cases, and they worry that one accusation, or misunderstood comment, could end their careers. But their actions affect women’s careers, too — potentially depriving them of the kind of relationships that lead to promotions or investments. This is because building genuine relationships with senior people is perhaps the most important contributor to career advancement. In some offices it’s known as having a rabbi; researchers call it sponsorship. Unlike mentors, who give advice and are often formally assigned, sponsors know and respect people enough that they are willing to find opportunities for them, and advocate and fight for them.....sponsors “have to spend some capital and take a risk on the up-and-coming person, and you simply don’t do that unless you know them and trust them.” But these relationships are crucial, she said, for “getting from the middle to the top.”
#MeToo  sponsorships  Claire_Cain_Miller  entertainment_industry  venture_capital  Silicon_Valley  Fox_News  mentoring  sexual_harassment  reputational_risk  workplaces  unintended_consequences  political_capital  gender_gap  personal_risk  relationships  women  deprivations 
october 2017 by jerryking
The Disproportionate Risks of Driving While Black
Yang Congtou Beijing 1 hour ago
'The officer found a small amount of marijuana and several grams of cocaine and arrested her.'

Ok, keep in mind God helps those who help themselves.
1) Don't drive...
advice  letters_to_the_editor  race  African-Americans  disproportionality  personal_risk  racial_disparities 
october 2015 by jerryking
Taking Risks in Love - NYTimes.com
FEB. 13, 2015 | NYT | Arthur Brooks.

If we want more love, we must conquer fear. We must take personal risks for big potential romantic rewards. Forget test-driving a relationship for 10 years, or searching for someone so perfectly matched as to resemble a sibling.

Love is supposed to be a little scary because it is uncertain. I remember moments when my own romantic venture seemed doomed and foolish. Courage means feeling the fear of rejection and loss but pursuing love anyway....The second thing love requires is mindfulness — pure focus, and total engagement in the current activity. “While washing the dishes,” the Buddhist monk Thich Nhat Hanh teaches, “one should only be washing the dishes.”

But mindfulness goes beyond the mundane; it is also the key to victory in the most audacious ventures. Emerging research shows that practicing mindfulness changes the structure of the brain in beneficial ways that make people more effective in business. Successful entrepreneurs have the uncanny ability to reside in the present moment even while working toward their goal. Lovers need the same mindful focus.
relationships  dating  marriage  courage  focus  personal_risk  romance  romantic_love  valentine  fear  mindfulness  seminal_moments 
february 2015 by jerryking
Powerful Thoughts From Paul Graham — Ross Hudgens
21. Empathy is probably the single most important difference between a good hacker and a great one. Some hackers are quite smart, but practically solipsists when it comes to empathy. It’s hard for such people to design great software, because they can’t see things from the user’s point of view.

25. In a field like physics, if we disagree with past generations it’s because we’re right and they’re wrong. But this becomes rapidly less true as you move away from the certainty of the hard sciences. By the time you get to social questions, many changes are just fashion.

34. Whatever the reason, there seems a clear correlation between intelligence and willingness to consider shocking ideas. This isn’t just because smart people actively work to find holes in conventional thinking. Conventions also have less hold over them to start with. You can see that in the way they dress.

43. E.B. White was amused to learn from a farmer friend that many electrified fences don’t have any current running through them. The cows apparently learn to stay away from them, and after that you don’t need the current. | If you’re a hacker who has thought of one day starting a startup, there are probably two things keeping you from doing it. One is that you don’t know anything about business. The other is that you’re afraid of competition. Neither of these fences have any current in them.

50. But since for most of the world’s history the main route to wealth was to steal it, we tend to be suspicious of rich people.

59. “A lot of the (people applying to be graduate students at MIT) seem smart,” he said. “What I can’t tell is whether they have any kind of taste.” Taste. You don’t hear that word much now. And yet we still need the underlying concept, whatever we call it. What my friend meant was that he wanted students who were not just good technicians, but who could use their technical knowledge to design beautiful things.

64. Good design resembles nature. It’s not so much that resembling nature is intrinsically good as that nature has had a long time to work on the problem. So it’s a good sign when your answer resembles nature’s.

70. You’re most likely to get good design if the intended users include the designer himself. When you design something for a group that doesn’t include you, it tends to be for people you consider less sophisticated than you, not more sophisticated. And looking down on the user, however benevolently, always seems to corrupt the designer. [Good design therefore requires personal risk? having skin in the game?]

76. “Of all tyrannies, a tyranny exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive.” – C.S. Lewis
biomimicry  business  inspiration  productivity  quotes  start_ups  Paul_Graham  Y_Combinator  via:hotchkiss  empathy  design  UX  hackers  personal_risk  PhDs  aesthetics  dangerous_ideas  smart_people  the_single_most_important 
november 2014 by jerryking
Lunch with the FT: Sir John Sawers - FT.com
September 19, 2014| FT |By Lionel Barber.

The spy chief chuckles. “I would not have taken this job if I weren’t prepared to deal in risk, personal and professional. MI6 is in the risk business.”....In future, he says, he wants MI6 to be more agile in response to threats but not at the expense of abandoning the military in theatre. The lesson of the past decade – when billions have been spent in Afghanistan and Iraq – is that a government can be toppled in months but it takes years to rebuild the country. Then again, “if you decide not to [rebuild], as we did in Libya, partly because of the scars from Iraq, then you topple the government and you end up having nothing in its place. And if you don’t intervene at all, you end up with a situation like you have in Syria. These are real dilemmas.”
Spies, he continues, are “normal human beings, public servants doing the best possible job we can for our country.”
agility  security_&_intelligence  Edward_Snowden  United_Kingdom  spymasters  MI6  nimbleness  personal_risk  risk-taking 
september 2014 by jerryking
Honesty That Benefits All
November 11, 2013 | NYT | By DOUG STEINER.

Headlines highlight the bad deeds of players in financial markets: insider trading scandals, traders colluding on interest rate manipulation, executives backdate options, etc....One tool of tackling problematic behavior is to rely on behavioral economics (i.e. traditional economics' assumption — that everyone acts rationally when making decisions — is wrong).

Behavioral economists combine the social psychology of human interactions with the thought processes involved in making economic decisions. They predict and explain how people use faulty logic in building a framework for making decisions. Then they figure out how to make people behave properly by inserting new triggers for better behavior..... people can justify lying if it’s “just a little bit.”(e.g. customers underreporting annual miles driven when filling out their car insurance audit forms, or their income when filling out tax returns). ...adding "morality reminders" (e.g. asking customers to sign forms attesting to the accuracy of their reports at the top of a page, instead of the bottom)....can change behavior, ... minor, even imperceptible changes to workflow can significantly affect honesty....human decisions can be influenced with small suggestions — say, a reminder that “over 99 percent of people truthfully answer these questions.” Or a group might be reminded of a collective cause-and-effect. (“You and your colleagues will not be eligible for bonuses if any of you engage in illegal behavior.”)

Employing similar behavioral psychology in financial transactions can discourage bad actions. Some examples:

■ Getting legal advice: .... Showing lawyers the profound influence they have on trading action might dissuade them from endorsing or seeming to endorse questionable decisions.
■ Making the costs clear to clients: Modern technology allows firms to automatically trade against clients who are unaware of the practice or oblivious to it. Clients generally lose money on these trades. Such actions are legal, even if they’re unseemly. This type of behavior has to be defined as immoral within the industry, or it won’t be long before it is made illegal
■ Setting the right tone:

...the financial crisis of 2008 showed that risk perception and reality differed widely. Efforts to use social psychology to change behavior are resulting in two changes at the same time.

The first is a change in the general perception of business risk, and how much risk a firm should assume to make returns to shareholders. The second is more important and more controllable. It involves personal perceptions of how much risk they should take when, say, trading securities, to impress their bosses and presumably get a larger bonus.
behavioral_change  behavioural_economics  Doug_Steiner  financial_markets  financial_services  honesty  nudge  personal_risk  psychology  risk-assessment  risk-perception 
january 2014 by jerryking
Whatever the weather
Nov. 24, 2012 | The Financial Times News: p10.|Gillian Tett who interviews Nassim Nicholas Taleb

Until now, Taleb says, modern society has generally assumed that people, systems or institutions fell into two camps: either they were fragile (and likely to break when shocks occur) or robust (and thus able to resist shocks without being impacted at all). Taleb insists there is a third category of people, institutions and systems that are resilient in a way we have been unable to articulate: they survive shocks not because they are immovable but precisely because they do change, bending in the face of stress; adapting and learning. This is the quality that he describes as "antifragile". (In the US the book is being published with the rather more explicit subtitle "Things that Gain from Disorder".)

Taleb goes on to explain how this works: while nation-states tend to be fragile (because they are highly dependent on one vision of the nation), city-states tend to be antifragile (because they can adapt and learn from history). Careers that are based on one large employer can be fragile but careers that are flexible and entrepreneurial are antifragile, because they can move with changing times. Similarly, the banking system is fragile, while Silicon Valley is antifragile; governments that are highly indebted are fragile, while those (such as Sweden) which have learnt from past mistakes and refuse to assume too much debt are antifragile. And Switzerland is presented as one of the most antifragile places of all, partly because its decentralised structure allows for plenty of experimentation...Taleb has plenty of advice to offer us on how to become more antifragile. We should embrace unpredictable change, rather than chase after an illusion of stability; refuse to believe anyone who offers advice without taking personal risk; keep institutions and systems small and self-contained to ensure that they can fail without bringing the entire system down; build slack into our lives and systems to accommodate surprises; and, above all, recognise the impossibility of predicting anything with too much precision. Instead of building systems that are excessively "safe", Taleb argues, we should roll with the punches, learn to love the random chances of life and, above all, embrace small pieces of adversity as opportunities for improvement. "Wind extinguishes a candle and energises a fire," he writes. "Likewise with randomness, uncertainty, chaos, you want to use them, not hide from them."
adaptability  adversity  antifragility  books  chaos  city-states  Gillian_Tett  illusions  Nassim_Taleb  overcompensation  personal_risk  randomness  resilience  scheduling  self-contained  skin_in_the_game  slack_time  surprises  trauma  uncertainty  unpredictability 
november 2012 by jerryking
Learning to Love Volatility: Nassim Nicholas Taleb on the Antifragile
November 16, 2012 | WSJ | Nassim Nicholas Taleb

In a world that constantly throws big, unexpected events our way, we must learn to benefit from disorder, writes Nassim Nicholas Taleb.

Some made the mistake of thinking that I hoped to see us develop better methods for predicting black swans. Others asked if we should just give up and throw our hands in the air: If we could not measure the risks of potential blowups, what were we to do? The answer is simple: We should try to create institutions that won't fall apart when we encounter black swans—or that might even gain from these unexpected events....To deal with black swans, we instead need things that gain from volatility, variability, stress and disorder. My (admittedly inelegant) term for this crucial quality is "antifragile." The only existing expression remotely close to the concept of antifragility is what we derivatives traders call "long gamma," to describe financial packages that benefit from market volatility. Crucially, both fragility and antifragility are measurable.

As a practical matter, emphasizing antifragility means that our private and public sectors should be able to thrive and improve in the face of disorder. By grasping the mechanisms of antifragility, we can make better decisions without the illusion of being able to predict the next big thing. We can navigate situations in which the unknown predominates and our understanding is limited.

Herewith are five policy rules that can help us to establish antifragility as a principle of our socioeconomic life.

Rule 1:Think of the economy as being more like a cat than a washing machine.

We are victims of the post-Enlightenment view that the world functions like a sophisticated machine, to be understood like a textbook engineering problem and run by wonks. In other words, like a home appliance, not like the human body. If this were so, our institutions would have no self-healing properties and would need someone to run and micromanage them, to protect their safety, because they cannot survive on their own.

By contrast, natural or organic systems are antifragile: They need some dose of disorder in order to develop. Deprive your bones of stress and they become brittle. This denial of the antifragility of living or complex systems is the costliest mistake that we have made in modern times.

Rule 2:Favor businesses that benefit from their own mistakes,not those whose mistakes percolate into the system.

Some businesses and political systems respond to stress better than others. The airline industry is set up in such a way as to make travel safer after every plane crash.

Rule 3:Small is beautiful, but it is also efficient.

Experts in business and government are always talking about economies of scale. They say that increasing the size of projects and institutions brings costs savings. But the "efficient," when too large, isn't so efficient. Size produces visible benefits but also hidden risks; it increases exposure to the probability of large losses.
Rule 4:Trial and error beats academic knowledge.
Rule 5:Decision makers must have skin in the game.

In the business world, the solution is simple: Bonuses that go to managers whose firms subsequently fail should be clawed back, and there should be additional financial penalties for those who hide risks under the rug. This has an excellent precedent in the practices of the ancients. The Romans forced engineers to sleep under a bridge once it was completed (jk: personal risk and skin in the game).
Nassim_Taleb  resilience  black_swan  volatility  turmoil  brittle  antifragility  personal_risk  trial_&_error  unknowns  size  unexpected  economies_of_scale  risks  hidden  compounded  disorder  latent  financial_penalties  Romans  skin_in_the_game  deprivations  penalties  stressful  variability 
november 2012 by jerryking
Champions of Change: Identifying, Understanding, and Supporting Champions of Technological Innovations - ProQuest
Summer 1990 | Organizational Dynamics | Christopher Higgins & Jane Howell.

This article presents the results of 25 interviews of personnel managers who were able to promote changes in business organizations through different methods of human resource management. Extremely high self-confidence, persistence, energy, and risk taking are the hallmark personality characteristics of champions. Champions show extraordinary confidence in themselves and their mission. They are motivated by a passionate belief, and enthusiasm about, the nature of the technology and what it can do for the company. Related to their self-confidence is the champions' capacity to cling tenaciously to their ideas and to persist in promoting them despite frequent obstacles and seemingly imminent failures. By actively promoting their ideas, often by repeating the same arguments over and over, champions overcome the opposition. Inexhaustible energy the unflagging vitality, is also a salient characteristic of champions. In many cases, champions willingly risk their position and prestige to ensure the innovation's success. Interestingly, while champions claim to be risk takers, many of them psychologically minimize the amount of personal risk associated with their involvement in the innovation.
Ivey  change  change_management  champions  ProQuest  leadership  personality_types/traits  change_agents  eels  personal_risk  self-confidence  mission-driven 
july 2012 by jerryking
Why You Should Stop Being a Wimp
Aug. 3, 2011 |BNET|By Suzanne Lucas |Ever met a successful
wimp? No such thing. The person who succeeds in the world of work isn't
the person that refuses to take chances. Business owners must take
financial & personal risks, evaluate mkts. & spot gaps which
they try to fill. Sometimes they commit to paying other people’s
salaries before knowing for sure if they’ll bring in enough $ to pay
their own. Successful sales people go out every day & risk rejection
in order to sell their products. You can't expect customers to
call. SVPs didn’t get there by keeping their head down & doing
precisely what their bosses asked of them. They looked for new
opportunities, suggested new paths for the biz, made difficult
decisions..This isn’t advice to be irrational, nor rude. Be politely
firm. Think through your plans–you must have plans in the 1st. place.
Do take risks where there is potential for payoff, do speak up in
meetings, do work your ass off and do ask for the recognition you
deserve.
advice  chutzpah  financial_risk  hard_choices  hustle  independent_viewpoints  indispensable  individual_initiative  intrinsically_motivated  It's_up_to_me  jck  ksfs  opportunities  overlooked_opportunities  owners  personal_payoffs  personal_risk  recognition  rejections  risk-taking  self-starters  speaking_up  uncharted_problems 
august 2011 by jerryking
In the age of social media, can we have some discourse? -
Jan. 07, 2011The Globe and MailJudith Timson. Conversation:
How Talk Can Change Our Lives, published in 2000 by British philosopher
and author Theodore Zeldin after a series of BBC talks. Educators and
conciliators love his key point, that a good conversation “involves
risk” because you enter it “with a willingness to emerge a slightly
different person.”....bring the attitude of questioning – “Why do you
think that?” – into discussions.
Communicating_&_Connecting  conversations  howto  books  risk-taking  Judith_Timson  questions  risks  public_discourse  disclosure  BBC  personal_risk 
march 2011 by jerryking
What, me worry? (1)
September 30, 2005 | Globe & Mail | by Doug Steiner.
Tsunamis, asteroids, central bankers - how do you protect one portfolio
against all those risks? Systemic versus personal risk.

"Unfortunately, risk is rarely that clear cut. It comes in many forms, and we all think of it in different ways. Many of us have trouble putting risks into appropriate categories. We often mash all of them together or worry too much about spectacular calamities. To get a handle on things, you need to create a proper hierarchy of anxieties and then deal with them in an orderly fashion.

Many academics split risks into two buckets. Systemic risk is general risk--risk that affects large groups of people, such as the stock market crashing or a hurricane wiping out a city. Personal risk relates to individuals making choices, such as trying to balance on a balcony railing after downing three or four martinis."
Doug_Steiner  category_errors  risk-assessment  systemic_risks  personal_risk  insurance  panics  natural_calamities  risk-mitigation  risks  disasters 
march 2009 by jerryking

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