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The Utter Uselessness of Job Interviews

Via the New York Times, the money quote:

The key psychological insight here is that people have no trouble turning any information into a coherent narrative. This is true when, as in the case of my friend, the information (i.e., her tardiness) is incorrect. And this is true, as in our experiments, when the information is random. People can’t help seeing signals, even in noise.

Says a lot about a recent election, too.

Radical Efficiency

Silicon Valley earned its name for the early chip-making business which staked early claims in orchard filled valleys. Companies such as Fairchild Semiconductor and later Intel and AMD were in the business of silicon, but they were also in the business of reinventing business introducing such concepts of stock options for employees and openly denying… More

From the 2016 Panic Report

Via Panic Blog:

Defining roles is important What happens when you’re truly a “flat” organization and you have a bunch of incredibly smart people that can all offer valuable input on almost every task happening at any one time? Things can actually slow down a little at times. You want the right people on the right tasks, and you want someone who can make tough decisions and process the possibilities. It’s possible we’ve outgrown complete flatness. We’ll be experimenting with this more into the future, although it’s so tricky — you don’t want people feeling excluded, and you don’t want to extinguish the passion of creating!

Hi. Thanks for the Unsolicited Mail!

Never in the history of ever have I acted on unsolicited mail. Ever. Your mail is unsolicited which means I did not request it. This makes your email spam. This is unfortunate because there is a non-zero chance the goods and/or services you’re selling might be useful. Given to my own devices, it is probable that in my endless compulsive wandering of the Internet that I would have discovered your goods and/or service and learned about the value you created.

But you blew it.

By spamming me, your product is cast as useless. And it’s not.

I realize that your strategy works. I realize that blindly spamming email addresses costs you very little and a single digital response percentage justifies your effort. You are going to continue with this strategy because the reward outweighs the risk and it feels like the fiscally responsible move.

My strategy works, too.

Trust Your Gut

Despite the growing reliance on “big data” to game out every decision, it’s clear to anyone with a glimmer of self-awareness that humans are incapable of constantly rational thought. We simply don’t have the time or capacity to calculate the statistical probabilities and potential risks that come with every choice.

I feel I’ve spent 22.3% of my last four years of my life arguing with data-minded engineers about this topic.

“The number of objective facts deserving of that term is extremely low and almost negligible in everyday life,” he says. “The whole idea of using logic to make decisions in the world is to me a fairly peculiar one, given that we live in a world of high uncertainty which is precisely the conditions in which logic is not the appropriate framework for thinking about decision-making.”

Preach it.

(Via Quartz)