What We’re Reading

A few good articles the Collaborative Fund team came across this week …

Communication

Important in every field:

Our top hiring criteria — in addition to having the skills to do the job — is, are you a great writer? You have to be a great writer to work here, in every single position, because the majority of our communication is written, primarily because a lot of us work remotely but also because writing is quieter. And we like long-form writing where people really think through an idea and present it.

Data

This is so important:

If the goal was to accurately predict what was going to happen from 2011 onward, then the data from the mid 1990s to 2011 should have been weighted more heavily than data from more distant periods of history, given that that data was obtained from a period that was temporally closer to (and therefore more likely to share commonalities with) the period of interest.

Optimism

Confidence among workers:

For the first time since 2005, more than half of U.S. workers say they’re satisfied with their jobs, according to the Conference Board, a research group. Employment is up, wages are finally rising and layoffs are near record lows, resulting in a more optimistic, contented workforce.

Engagement

Impressive:

In the far distant days of October 2012, when Facebook hit one billion users, 55 per cent of them were using it every day. At two billion, 66 per cent are.

Laborforce

Incredible, and an example of how complicated economics can be:

New research suggests a significant portion of the post-1990s decline in labor-force participation among Americans in their prime working years could be linked to the opioid epidemic.

Conducted by Princeton University economist Alan Krueger, the study found that a national increase in opioid painkiller prescriptions between 1999 and 2015 may have accounted for about 20% of the decline in workforce participation among men ages 25 to 54, and roughly 25% of the drop in prime-age female workforce participation.

Technology

Hard to argue:

I have a theory that much recent tech development and innovation over the last decade or so has an unspoken overarching agenda. It has been about creating the possibility of a world with less human interaction. This tendency is, I suspect, not a bug—it’s a feature. We might think Amazon was about making books available to us that we couldn’t find locally—and it was, and what a brilliant idea—but maybe it was also just as much about eliminating human contact.

Have a good weekend.


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