What We're Reading

Here are a few good articles the Collaborative Fund team came across this week.

Echo chamber

Cullen Roche discusses the media and the election:

As uncomfortable as it might be, the big lesson from this election is not that we’re separated or divided. The lesson is that we’re failing to understand the full composition of the world we live in because we’ve created echo chambers that curate the things we want to hear and reinforce our confirmation bias. If we want to solve that problem we need to learn to be more open-minded and give credence to views that we disagree with. We need to make an effort to obtain our information from a broader set of sources. This will better allow us to understand the world we live in and work together to appreciate the needs and concerns of everyone in it.

Long view

Spark Capital celebrates long-term thinking:

The founders and teams we’ve worked with who have been most successful have an uncanny ability to execute in the moment as they also keep an eye on the five, ten, even twenty-year plan. They’ve taught us that some things just take time. For example, entrepreneurs show us time and again you cannot build meaningful companies that make a real difference in the world — the kind of companies we want to invest in — overnight. We’ve also seen firsthand there are no shortcuts to building a company culture that embodies qualities like loyalty and mutual respect.

Efficiency

Harry Trimble laments how hard it is to move as a renter:

Bizarrely, most of the effort of moving house is not moving my stuff, but moving my information.

Adding to the oddness, most of this effort involves trying to give someone else money. Why would someone make it hard for me to give them money?

Not to mention all the calls and late payments this faff and complication causes.

Surely the simpler I can do these tasks, the better. For everyone.

Stars align

Shane Parrish writes about the science of success:

Top 0.01% success is a multiplicative system: Everything’s gotta go right. The world is too competitive to allow for anything else. So in your quest for success, realize that you’ll have to do deep, hard work for many years, you may need the right parents (to an extent) and you’ll need a whole lot of luck.

Demographics

The prime-age working population is now growing again. This is a really big deal for economic growth:

PrimeOct2016.png

Same as it ever was

Capitalism should refresh our business leaders over time. Some research shows it’s not:

Capitalism is inherently unforgiving: today’s leader is tomorrow’s failure. But it also means that it is inherently progressive, since clever ideas are quickly spread through the economy.

Some striking new research suggests that this Schumpeterian mechanism may have broken down. The leaders are staying ahead much longer than is desirable. A group of researchers at the OECD, a club of mostly rich countries, examined the performance of a representative set of companies in 24 of its 35 member countries between 2001 and 2013. They discovered that the top 5% of them, dubbed “frontier firms”, have continued to increase their productivity while the other 95% (the laggards) have been stagnant in this regard.

Have a good weekend.

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