Tag Archives: Failure

Updates from Chicago Booth

Why artificial intelligence isn’t boosting the economy—yet
By Alex Verkhivker – Measured productivity has been declining for more than a decade in the United States and abroad. It calls to mind Solow’s paradox, a 1987 observation by the Nobel laureate economist Robert Solow, who noted that one “can see the computer age everywhere but in the productivity statistics.”

It shouldn’t be a surprise that the same thing is happening with artificial intelligence, or AI, according to MIT’s Erik Brynjolfsson, MIT PhD candidate Daniel Rock, and Chicago Booth’s Chad Syverson.

AI is a once-in-a-lifetime, general-purpose technology that promises to provide an “engine of growth,” they write. This was also true of the steam engine, electricity, and the internal combustion engine.

And yet, the researchers point out, the steam technologies that drove the US industrial revolution took nearly 50 years to show up in rising productivity statistics. And the first 25 years after the development of the electric motor and internal combustion engine were associated with a productivity slump, with growth of less than 1.5 percent a year. Then in 1915, the pace of economic expansion doubled for 10 years.

In these cases, the researchers find signs of what they call “the productivity J-curve,” a period in economic data when productivity growth is underestimated, followed by a period when it’s overestimated. This dynamic may have also applied to the computer-powered information-technology era, with 25 years of slow productivity growth followed by a decadelong acceleration, from 1995 through 2005.

Why does this happen? more>


How To Manage Mission-Crippling Surprises In Your New Job

By George Bradt – Executive onboarding is the key to accelerating success and reducing risk in a new job.

People generally fail in new executive roles because of poor fit, poor delivery or poor adjustment to a change down the road. They accelerate success by

  1. getting a head start,
  2. managing the message,
  3. setting direction and building the team and
  4. sustaining momentum and delivering results.

Make it about the mission, not about you. Find common ground/purpose. Influence others to do things that help them achieve what’s most important to them, not you. more>

Why Groups Fail (Hint: For the Same Reasons that Nations Fail)


Moral Mazes: The World of Corporate Managers, Author: Robert Jackall.
Why Nations Fail: The Origins of Power, Prosperity, and Poverty, Authors: Daron Acemoglu and James Robinson.

By David S. Wilson – In a nutshell, students motivated by dominance (but not students motivated by prestige) sabotaged their groups when their leadership position was threatened, but not otherwise.

They did this (in different versions of the experiment) by limiting the ability of the most talented group member to send messages to other group members, by isolating the most talented group member in a separate room, and by preventing the most talented group member from socially bonding with the other members. All of these tactics were clearly detrimental to the objectives of the group as a whole, abusing the student’s role as group leader.

The entire concept of leadership taught in most business schools and the structure of most business organizations (at least in the United States) is setup for the kind of abuse by power-hungry leaders illustrated by that elegant social psychology experiment.

Their elegant experiments contain the seeds of policy prescriptions. They were able to turn disruptive self-serving behaviors in power-hungry students on and off with their experimental treatments. Real social organizations can do the same with their institutional arrangements. more> http://goo.gl/akbF1N

If You Want To Succeed, You Have To Screw Up

By Jennifer Miller – “When you’re just starting to learn something new, the errors that you experience are helping you learn faster,” says David Herzfeld, a PhD student in Biomedical Engineering involved with the Hopkins study.

Which means anyone struggling to master a sport, skill, or creative task should keep this in mind: Don’t beat yourself up for repeatedly fouling on your serve or drawing a human hand that more accurately resembles a starfish. more> http://tinyurl.com/mrpaum2

‘Passion’ at Work Is Overrated


How to Fail at Almost Everything and Still Win Big: Kind of the Story of My Life, Author: Scott Adams.

By Scott Adams – I have questions.

For starters, how much passion is enough? If I’m feeling optimistic about my future and I just drank a big mug of coffee, am I passionate yet? How close am I to the dream?

What if I’m ambitious and I don’t need much sleep. Is that the same as passion? Or do I need to act happy too? more> http://tinyurl.com/qcq3bac