Why you Fail after you Win

Maths! Photo "Amherst63-012" by NealeA, Flickr, CC-By-2.0
Maths! Photo “Amherst63-012” by NealeA, Flickr, CC-By-2.0

In mathematics and statistics, Mean is one method to represent a data set with a single number. When we talk about “average” we often refer to the “Mean.” The Mean is calculated by diving the sum of data points by that number of data points:

Add Data Points: 4 + 8 + 15 + 16 + 23 + 42 = 108

Sum of 108, Divided by 6 data points = 108/6 = Mean of 18

Mean is easiest to calculate with numbers and quantifiable data, such as your average (mean) nightly hours of sleep, or your mean cost of lunch. For example, the “Average Human” is either calculated from measurements, or it’s a general term people use without accuracy. Continue reading “Why you Fail after you Win”

Facebook and the Principal-Agent Problem

Earlier this week, Mark Zuckerberg testified before the US Congress about User Privacy within The Facebook.

Mark Zuckerberg testifies before Congress in April 2018
Mark Zuckerberg testifies before Congress in April 2018

Six months ago, this wasn’t even a conversation. Continue reading “Facebook and the Principal-Agent Problem”

What is your Cash really worth? The Law of Diminishing Returns

We’ve all been asked to donate to our favorite causes.

School events, charities, public radio, and politicians have all asked for our cash. They each promise the biggest bang for our buck.

Politicians ask for small donations not because it makes a large difference, but because you'll remain consistant. Image "Bernie Sanders - Caricature" by DonkeyHotey, Flickr, CC-By-2.0
Politicians ask for small donations not because it makes a large difference, but because you’ll remain consistent. Image “Bernie Sanders – Caricature” by DonkeyHotey, Flickr, CC-By-2.0

How about you, have you donated small amounts of cash to any politicians? Continue reading “What is your Cash really worth? The Law of Diminishing Returns”

Inside View vs. Outside View

Most problems are not unique. Chances are, what is happening to you has happened to many others. It will happen again to others.

What's the outside view? Photo "001102" by my new favorite photographer Alexey Gaponov, Flickr, CC-By-2.0
What’s the outside view? Photo “001102” by my new favorite photographer Alexey Gaponov, Flickr, CC-By-2.0
  • New restaurants often fail within five years
  • New love often is blind to incompatibilities
  • ‘Good enough’ mentality often overlooks opportunities

What can you learn from those who have traveled this path before you?

Continue reading “Inside View vs. Outside View”

I Smell a Rat! The Prisoner’s Dilemma

Did you know the original Universities were designed as Prisons to keep unruly young men caged up while their hormones drove risky behavior that threatened the local social harmony?

Rather than allow young people to take risks that help them to grow and experience life, we continue to indoctrinate them with social rules to help keep the order.

The risks available to busy students are far less violent than what may be the alternatives.

I don’t remember everything from University. There certainly weren’t a lot of dangerous risks in the small town where I studied.

Dorm life was a party — and we could smoke indoors! A “career” after graduation seemed a lifetime away. Econ 101 taught me the benefits of Free Trade.

I hated this class! Photo "Amherst63-012" by NealeA, Flickr, CC-By-2.0
I loved this class! Photo “Amherst63-012” by NealeA, Flickr, CC-By-2.0

And while I learned a lot I’m sure, there is plenty that I didn’t learn.

Maybe you, too?

•We didn’t learn how to start a business in university — the mindset of an entrepreneur.

•We didn’t learn how to create and maintain a budget — the mindset of habit.

•We didn’t learn to negotiate — the mindset of persuasion.

This is the reason I’ve started PersuasionReadingList.com — to learn what I should know to understand what moves the human mind, and to share these concepts of influence with you. Continue reading “I Smell a Rat! The Prisoner’s Dilemma”