- Critical thinking is about being able to step back and think about your thinking. It's something you can practice and you can learn.
- Opposite of critical thinking is selective thinking, which is a reinforcement of own opinion.
To improve critical thinking:
1. Question assumptions: Constantly challenge your own thinking and assumptions on a daily basis: Ask "What if" questions.
2. Reason through logic: Be very factual and rigid in gathering facts, data, proof to justify why you're doing what you're doing to pay attention to the chain of your own logic
3. Diversity thought: Interact with people who are not in your silo
- Manage emotions especially in heated decisions
- Diversity of thought is important
Highly recommended episode for people who want to improve their decision-making skills & leadership in your workplace:
- We often limit our options for decisions in binaries (i.e. to build the parking lot or not?). But the better way to improve decision quality is to come up with more options that solve the same problem.
- Women tend to be more collaborative in decision-making than men.
- Turn confidence down while making decision, then turn back the confidence up when you've made that decision and are conveying it in order to create trust.
- In order to draw out assumptions, a better question to ask is "What would have to true for this decision to be the best choice?"
- If you're struggling with a decision, ask yourself "What would I advise my friend to do?"
- Set goal of meetings: Is it to flesh out decisions or to make a decision?
- Groups are more effective when you set time limit to decision-making and then do a check-in at midpoint
Biggest takeaway: Don't judge the quality of the decision based on the outcome, but the frame and process of how you made the decision.
Steps of good decision making:
1. What is the frame? Get the frame right or else you decision will be the "right answer to the wrong problem"
2. What you got: Characterize the alternatives you have
3. What you know: What are the chances of different things happening? Characterizing information.
4. What you want: Evaluating preferences
Great interview with PostSecret Founder! Learned so much about Frank's wonder with postcards since a kid and his fun creative projects since then (some that even end up on the WashPo!). Great interview @podcastbrunch!
A series of TED talks and accompanying interviews with the speakers about the theme of "secrets". I've always loved PostSecret, so it was great to hear from founder Frank Warren in his home talking about the founding of the project and how he gets postcards of secrets everyday -- including many that are too deep to share and post online or in his book.
The second speaker, Ash Beckham, talked about being secretive in their gender identity. Loved the part where Ash told a kid about the secret and the kids like "Can I you just give me the food I'm in line for?"
The last speaker, journalist Glenn Greenwald talks about the right to personal secrets without companies and state surveilling. He argues that personal secrets and need for privacy is a human condition and allows creativity to flourish.
This was a heart-wrenching story about an undercover policeman in the UK who pretended to be a heroin addict trying to bust a drug operation, because he loved pretending to be someone else. He talks about how he interacted with the people he was trying to bust and realize that at the end of the day, they're human. Learned that you can also suffer from PTSD because of you are struggling with what you have done to other people and that's due to moral damage.
Great storytelling and so well produced.
Conversation with Erica Mandy, founder of theNewsWorthy, with the awesome @jspinelle!
It was interesting to hear about why and how Erica founded this short daily news podcast, her approach and plans for the future. theNewsWorthy reminds me of The Skimm! Erica tries to be unbiased in her daily roundups by reporting from sources from left and right-leaning media. Also, good discussion on succession planning when a podcast is dependent on a single host.
This was a fun episode to listen to about kimchi as I was -- get this -- eating kimchi. Lots of interesting facts including the rise of Korean food globally due to gastrodiplomacy efforts from South Korea.
Also, stay listening until the very end including the listener comments about the lobster episode. I actually laughed out loud on one of them.
This was a fascinating episode about Planned Parenthood where I learned more about it than I ever have from headlines. This is definitely an episode that I has stayed with me for years now since it first came out. The then-CEO talks about why they chose to keep the name "Planned Parenthood" despite the controversy and weaponization of their name and organization by political actors. Worth a listen.
This is probably one of the most in-depth interviews with Melinda Gates I've heard. I didn't know she was Catholic. Jarvis asked an interesting question about how Melinda reconciled her religion with their philanthropic work around contraception in the developing world.
Oh my gosh! I remember hearing about the London President's Club men-only "charity gala" where they treated the hostesses like meat. This is a great interview with the journalist who went undercover as a hostess to investigate.
This was a hilarious episode with Kara Swisher interviewing NYT's The Daily's Michael Barbaro. This was great insight into Barbaro's career in journalism, how The Daily came about and how they choose to produce and select the topics they cover. It was very interesting that if there are multiple topical issues, they would pick the one that is "richer in audio".
I was surprised that younger folks nowadays believe that blogs and YouTube videos are more credible than MSM outlets because they are “unfiltered” 😨 Glad this education project to teach kids how to discern fact from fiction is going on!
Interesting take on the future of the “subscription wars” of news outlets. Also interesting argument about how The Information is actually antithesis to news as a driver of democracy because the business model is to sell to scarce information to a limited number of privileged people. Also fascinating how this business model is not that different from when merchants paid for news for trade way back in more ancient times.
Are women just better hedge fund managers than men because they’re just inherently better at managing money? Or is that a bad data and there’s something worse about hedge fund gender situation underlying this?
This is probably one of the most vivid Revisionist History episodes that have stuck with me for years. It's about delivering education for the rich and poor in US. There's something about lobster being served at private college cafeterias.
I want to know who that big American Corp CEO is who plays golf a third of the year.
Loved the introduction of the philosophical concepts about whether something remains the same based on identity or space/time continuity theories. Made my brain do somersaults.
"100% of users go through onboarding, but not all your product features." Good overview on why onboarding is important. Interesting discussion on "micro-onboarding" instead of trying to do everything upfront.
“Growth is connecting more people to the existing value proposition” vs creating new value props or strengthening value props. This is a superb episode with great mental frameworks on how to think about growth at B2C companies from one of the best in the field, Casey Winters who was from Grubhub and Pinterest.
Glad I listened to this because the Mobile Growth Framework that Andy Carvell crested when he was at SoundCloud looks extremely useful. He talks about his experience at SoundCloud and how he helped transition them from just web to mobile, which is more sticky than web where they had really high bounce rates.
Hannah from Last.fm and Vine talks about social sharing for music and video. She reflects on how the industry was debating about whether human or machine curated playlists were the best and now everyone realizes it’s a mix of both. She talks about how users at Last.fm said that the best music was the ones their friends shared with them so she started her own company to do that even though it didn’t work out at the end of the day.
This episode wasn’t about weeding plants but weeding library books (i.e. getting rid of books from the library collection). I love physical books so this was heartbreaking for me to hear the weeding of 100k library books in SF’s library. The heist of books was hilarious though!
This was such a touching episode about Globe and Mail journalist Ann Hui’s journey in understanding Chinese food across Canada and the search for her own family’s history as part of her book Chop Suey Nation. It’s so sad to hear that her grandpa and her dad was separated for two decades due to Canada’s racist policies against Chinese people at that time 😢
Enjoyed this episode about the role of opinion writing and editorial pages in mainstream media in the age of Twitter and divisive opinions. They interview the NYT deputy editor of opinion and lobbed some challenging questions to her.
Power woman Dr. Diane Wong talks about the importance and power of oral histories and her experience collecting oral histories for Chinatowns across US and Canada. She also talks about the mobilization against gentrification in New York's Chinatown.
“We like your culture sometimes unless it inconveniences us” Even though whether the Go-Go music stayed on or not is not comparable to some of the larger issues of gentrification like affordability impacts on housing and food, it’s symbolic, easy for people to grasp and can be an entry way to advocacy for more complex issues.