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Happy Labor Day and greetings from somewhere between Atlanta and Charlotte!
In case you missed last week’s newsletter or just need a reminder, I took a new job with Tread Athletics in North Carolina.
We’re excited to get to our new home and start the next season of our lives.
With all of the moving parts of relocating 30 hours East, I’ve had less time to read, think, and write than normal. But no matter, this newsletter is still coming to you with a new article and some of the most interesting links I came across this week.
One side note: this newsletter will be a little shorter than most. I hope you’ll forgive me for this. Unfortunately, boxes don’t yet pack themselves.
What do we have today?
In this abbreviated MME, I want to talk about a few high-value topics, such as:
- Why we’re wrong about a team culture
- The ingredients of genius
- Why being underemployed is the key to doing good work
- And the motivations of creative minds
New from the Blog
Survivorship Bias: Why the way we think about team culture is wrong
Inspired by a tweet thread from Cody Royle and the ideas of Nassim Taleb, I wrote about why we’re wrong about much of what we think we know about culture.
Spoiler alert: Winning doesn’t always equal good culture.
Articles of the Week
1. The Bus Ticket Theory of Genius by Paul Graham (Article)
This article is so good, I couldn’t pick just one quote.
“So what matters? You can never be sure. It’s precisely because no one can tell in advance which paths are promising that you can discover new ideas by working on what you’re interested in.”
“For example, for the very ambitious, the bus ticket theory suggests that the way to do great work is to relax a little. Instead of gritting your teeth and diligently pursuing what all your peers agree is the most promising line of research, maybe you should try doing something just for fun. And if you’re stuck, that may be the vector along which to break out.”
My major takeaway: What looks like genius often just feels like play to the one who’s become obsessed with something that matters.
2. The Advantage of Being a Little Underemployed by Morgan Housel (Article)
“Amos Tversky, the late collaborator of Nobel-winning psychologist Daniel Kahneman, once said “the secret to doing good research isalways to be a little underemployed. You waste years by not being able to waste hours.””
This reminds me of one of my favorite speeches of all-time: Solitude and Leadership
Quote of the Week
I loved this quote from Pearl Buck, found on the opening page of Advertising Secrets of the Written Word.
“The truly creative mind in any field is no more than . . . a cruelly delicate organism with the overpowering necessity to create, create, create—so that without the creating of music or poetry or books or buildings or something of meaning, his very breath is cut off from him. He must create, must pour out creation. By some strange, unknown, inward urgency he is not really alive unless he is creating.”
That’s all for this week. Thank you for reading!
Take some time to read the articles and send me your thoughts in an email. I promise to read and respond to each one.
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Have a great week,