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Guess Who Doesn’t Care That You Went to Harvard?

Geplaatst op mrt 1, 2014 in News

The Latest on Hiring

Business Leaders Say Knowledge Trumps College Pedigree


Sorry, Ivy League-educated dilettantes: While that framed degree may look mighty fine on your wall, most business leaders aren’t particularly keen on your academic credentials when hiring, at least according to a new survey from Gallup. Consider the proportion of respondents who ranked each of the following factors as “very important”: knowledge in the relevant field, 84%; applied skills in the field, 79%; college major, 28%; and place of education, just 9%. Additionally:

+ Everyone, including Gallup, points to Google when discussing the knowledge-over-pedigree issue; Thomas Friedman’s recent column on the company’s five hiring attributes is generating a lot of buzz, though there’s a big distinction between “knowledge” and “expertise,” the latter of which Google isn’t interested in at all.

+ This brief write-up from Quartz reveals a related, and startling, fact: 96% of college provosts say students are prepared for the job market. Yet only 14% of the public and 11% of business leaders agree. 

It All Started With Magnets

Buckyballs vs. The United States of America


Craig Zucker is an entrepreneur prone to making suggestive advertising puns about a simple product that made him millions — tiny, round magnets that stick together to form interesting shapes. The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, or CPSC, is charged with protecting consumers against dangerous products. The CPSC decided that Zucker’s Buckyballs are just that after several children suffered lasting intestinal damage from swallowing them. Zucker, in turn, provided clear warning labels on the packaging and didn’t market his product to children. But that didn’t stop the incidents, or the controversy. 

The contentious litigation that’s ensued — the CPSC eventually sued Zucker specifically, which is almost unheard-of — brings up complicated questions that bridge safety and entrepreneurship. “Every time a new product like Buckyballs arrives,” writes Burt Helm, “a decision must be made. Do we keep this new thing and warn against the dangers — like we do with balloons, trampolines, and plastic bags? Or do we banish it?” 

They Don’t Involve Your Ego

Leadership Skills for the Year 2030

The Washington Post

Perceiving that businesspeople are worried about such things as the accelerating pace of change, the consulting firm Hay Group did a study of the megatrends that will shape leadership over the next dozen-plus years, and in so doing they gave businesspeople plenty of new things to worry about. Such as: Are you too egocentric to succeed as a leader in the future? In a Q&A, a regional director, Georg Vielmetter, explains that what will be needed is altocentrism — focusing on others, being emotionally open, using empathy to lead, and not putting yourself at the center of things. You’ll also want to develop personal relationships with crucial individuals, because the future will be all about networks. It’s a world that will fit well with the attitudes of millennials, who are less interested than previous generations in managing people. That’s perfect: The leaderless company, not-led by people who don’t want to lead. —Andy O’Connell

Buses vs. Trains

Are Women ‘Forced’ to Work Closer to Home?

The World Bank

In the “This is fascinating but we don’t quite know what it means yet or what to do about it” category comes new research from Shomik Mehndiratta at the World Bank: While the average commute time for men and women in Buenos Aires is almost identical — 47.47 and 47.10 minutes, respectively – a closer look reveals that men travel at faster speeds than women. This means that men cover larger distances, and, presumably, have broader swaths of employment opportunities, particularly compared to the women in the survey who have children. In fact, when researchers mapped their findings, they found that “in parts of the city, men with children have access to over 80% more jobs than their female counterparts.” 

What Are You Great At?

Shedding the Shackles of Judgment for Better Decision-Making


If you’ve been piling on the self-criticism in your efforts to get ahead, you’re probably on the wrong track. Although many of us believe, deep down, that negative self-talk is what keeps us in line, research shows the opposite, writes Schon Beechler of Insead. It’s the “learner” in us, rather than the “judger,” who fuels our success, and we can choose which of these selves to invoke. Instead of looking at what you might be doing wrong or whether you’re good enough for your job, ask, “What am I great at? What works? What are my choices?” Questions such as these help turn off the punishing self-talk that strips you of confidence. —Andy O’Connell 


… Because It’s True

Fourth-Grader Named Jackson to Someday Fire You (The Onion)
America’s Gargantuan Share of Global Wealth, in One Map (Time)
Science Explores Our Magical Belief in the Power of Celebrity (Smithsonian Magazine)

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