What We’re Reading

A few good articles the Collab team came across this week …

How to read

This is helpful:

The solution I devised for myself is a simple one I wanted to share. It’s 25 pages a day. That’s it. Just commit to that, and then do it. What will 25 pages a day get you?

Let’s say that two days out of each month, you probably won’t have time to read. Plus Christmas. That gives you 340 days a year of solid reading time. 25 pages a day for 340 days is 8,500 pages. 8,500. What I have also found is that, when I commit to a minimum of 25 pages, I almost always read more. So let’s call the 8,500 pages 10,000. (I only need to extend that 25 pages into 30 to get there.)

With 10,000 pages a year, at a general pace of 25/day, what can we get done?

Well, The Power Broker is 1,100 pages. The four LBJ books are collectively 3,552 pages. Tolstoy’s two masterpieces come in at a combined 2,160. Gibbons is six volumes and runs to about 3,660 pages. That’s 10,472 pages.

Social skills

Rules of entrepreneur engagement:

  1. Give honest and direct feedback

I’ve seen some investors say the most positive things to their entrepreneurs, only to complain about them and the company in private to their partners or fellow board members and investors.

As investors, we need to be both cheerleader and critic. It’s easy to say the good things, but we can’t hold back on the tough feedback when it’s necessary. I often decide on the best way to deliver the feedback (1:1 versus board meetings), but I try to never withhold that feedback. Investors need to be honest and empathetic!

Marriage

A big shift:

Currently, 26 percent of poor adults, 39 percent of working-class adults and 56 percent of middle- and upper-class adults ages 18 to 55 are married, according to a research brief published from two think tanks, the American Enterprise Institute and Opportunity America.

In 1990, more than half of adults were married, with much less difference based on class and education: 51 percent of poor adults, 57 percent of working-class adults and 65 percent of middle- and upper-class adults were married.

Geography

Prosperity by region:

Screen Shot 2017-09-28 at 11.42.35 AM.png

Trends

On the up and up:

More than a quarter (28%) of ultra-net-worth “family offices” are now putting money into social and environmental areas. And, as younger generations take the reins, that percentage is likely to rise significantly in the years ahead.

Crime

An old white-collar criminal opens up:

I always tell people what I did 50 years ago as a teenager is now 4,000 times easier to do today than when I did it. Technology breeds crime—it always has and it always will. There’s always going to be people willing to use technology in a negative, self-serving way. So today it’s much easier, whether it’s forging checks or getting information. People go on Facebook and tell you what car they drive, their mother’s name, their wife’s maiden name, children’s name, where they’re going on vacation, where they’ve been on vacation. There’s nothing you can’t research in a matter of a couple of minutes and find out about someone.

Have a good weekend.


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