Monday, April 20, 2009

Stuff I Have Found Interesting Today

Jurgen's latest: Leader vs. Ruler: Which One Are You? BTW NOOP stands for "NO OPeration" Ididn't know that before today, I guess I gotta stop calling it nüp and start calling it no-op. It's agood read. Some sections I particularly liked:

  • "reading the book Tribes, by Seth Godin. In his book Seth says that never in history has it been so easy for anyone to be a leader. These days, with the use of social media, each of us is able to attract our own followers. And on Twitter, this is exactly what we're doing (quite literally). Seth explains that a crowd becomes a tribe when it has a leader that the people are following out of their own free will. And the interesting thing is that people can follow different leaders for different causes."
  • "in many social systems rulers can peacefully co-exist with leaders. For example: in any football (or soccer) match you will find leaders (one in each team) and rulers (the referees). They all play their parts in making the game work for everyone."
  • "To be a leader is not the next step for managers"
  • "It is the manager's job to give room to leaders"
  • "It's the managers' job to make sure that leadership is cultivated, and that the emerging leaders are following the rules."

From Freakonomics comes a discussion about an MBA course I interested in (trust me that's rare) “Using Experiments in Firms" from Don’t guess, experiment. Some quotes from the interview:

  • “The level of experimentation is abysmal. These firms do not take full advantage of feedback opportunities they’re presented with. After seeing example after example, we sat down and said, ‘We have to try to do something to stop this.’ One change we could make is to teach 75 to 100 of the best MBA students in the world how to think about feedback opportunities and how to think about designing their own field experiments to learn something that can make their company better.  
  • One example was a company that was told by consultants that sales surged when it advertised on television – without realizing that its advertisements appeared just before big holiday sales days."It wasn't that advertising caused their sales to go up but that knowing their sales were going to go up caused them to advertise a few weeks earlier.”

Levitt says in the blog entry "Thankfully, the reporter did not mention that most of the students hated the class." Gotta love his self deprecation.

Jeff's latest:How Not To Conduct an Online Poll

Basically a review of Inside the Precision Hack. I found this somewhat interesting, but was kind of shocked at the quote from the article "The poll announces (perhaps subtly) to the world, that the most influential are not the Obamas, Britneys or the Rick Warrens of the world, the most influential are an extremely advanced intelligence: the hackers."

WHAT?!?! Jeff's review is bit more tame "... is it really a precision hack when your adversaries are completely incompetent?". I think this guy is WAY off base, but he did the homework so you gotta give him some credit.

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