Career Advice from a Stoic

I recently visited with a 27 year old who asked me for help in figuring out what to do with his life. He is about to start at a prestigious graduate school and is feeling pressure to make some big career decisions quickly.  Here’s the letter I wrote him, inspired by Seneca’s Letters from a Stoic. Before you … Continue reading Career Advice from a Stoic

The Promise and Peril of Group Decision-Making

Group Decision-Making is Really Hard Whom should we hire, promote or fire? Who should we put on this proposal writing team and what should we propose? I’ve made or participated in such group decisions hundreds of times and I’ve never felt confident in the process or the outcome. Did we come up with the right … Continue reading The Promise and Peril of Group Decision-Making

Your Gender: Your Destiny?

How do men and women approach decision-making differently? An evidence-based answer to this question is important: If we want to make better personal, policy and business decisions, the tools and strategies we use will depend on our strengths and weaknesses, which may be correlated with gender. If we want to help others, we need to … Continue reading Your Gender: Your Destiny?

Your Decision-Making Personality: Myers-Briggs & TAIS

My college-era friends enjoy reminding me of the time decades ago when I sent the waiter at a fancy restaurant away several times as I struggled to select an entrée from the menu. It was an important decision for me: the dinner out was a rare splurge to celebrate graduation with close friends who were about … Continue reading Your Decision-Making Personality: Myers-Briggs & TAIS

Choice Architecture:  Don’t be Evil

HBR’s recent article, Leaders as Decision Architects, is a detailed investigation of how business managers can improve employee choices by adjusting the framework, context and process in which those decisions are made. The authors draw from two of my favorite books in behavioral economics, “Thinking Fast and Slow” and “Nudge”. There’s no doubt that in the right … Continue reading Choice Architecture:  Don’t be Evil

Career Decisions & the U-Shaped Happiness Curve

The Atlantic recently ran this terrific article by Jonathan Rauch about the nearly universal u-shaped path of happiness that most humans and some primates follow: Happiness starts relatively high in early adulthood, declining steadily until late 40s or early 50s, when it picks up again until the final years. It appears to be much more … Continue reading Career Decisions & the U-Shaped Happiness Curve