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Roz Hewsenian

Supported by Greenhaven Road Capital, finding value off the beaten path. Roz Hewsenian joined Ted Seides for a summary of her career – and summary of many of the themes we write about here. If decision hygiene were a thing, Hewsenian would be like Steph Curry. And like Curry, Hewsenian had to put in a […]

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Ben Falk

Supported by Greenhaven Road Capital, finding value off the beaten path. Update: This is a two-parter. First, the update from Falk on Wharton Moneyball and below from his podcast with Zach Lowe. Getting lucky. When asked how he got started in analytics Falk said: “The short answer is right place, right time.” “But also the right […]

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The Yin and Yang of Negotiations

Supported by Greenhaven Road Capital, finding value off the beaten path. This is a repost from elsewhere but it needs to be its own post. In Never Split the Difference, Chris Voss suggests that tit-for-tat and split the difference negotiations are the easy way out. He opens the book with a critique of the Harvard Negotiations […]

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What if Jeff Bezos was an NBA GM?

Supported by Greenhaven Road Capital, finding value off the beaten path. Would Jeff Bezos be a good NBA GM? As Zach Lowe talked to Kevin Arnovitz in June 2017 about the NBA draft and offseason I kept thinking, ‘these ideas sound familiar. Oh, yeah, that’s Jeff Bezos!’ Specifically: Wait for the right pitch. Have top […]

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What is Mike’s Notes?

Rather than write more short e-books, longer printed books, or bulging blog posts I started a (paid) monthly newsletter. It’s $20 for six months. My goal is to create something to be read offline. It comes in PDF, EPUB, and MOBI attachments on the last Friday of the month. The most value will come from […]

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Judith Elsea

Judith Elsea was on the Origins podcast from Notation Capital to talk about seed investments, VCs, and figuring out who to work with. Much like Gina Martin Adams I had never heard of Elsea, but thought her interview was good. Here are my notes. 1/ Heuristics (including ‘default to no’). “If it (the Weathervane algorithm) makes […]

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John Nagl

10 things I learned about life from reading about warfare. In Learning to Eat Soup with a Knife, John Nagl writes about the difference in counterinsurgency techniques between the British in Malaya and the United States in Vietnam and Afghanistan. What amazed me most was that many non-military theories intertwined with counterinsurgency warfare, like; organizational culture, philosophy, […]

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Introducing the Mental Models Podcast

No notes today, two bits of housekeeping. 1/ A new podcast. I really enjoyed my first podcast season: Mike’s Notes. That season was a cousin to  the things I wrote here. I explained things like optionality, the XMBA, and how to solve hard things in audio form. The second season, titled Mike’s Mental Models, will be about the mental models […]

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Low Overhead

Thesis: If you keep your overhead low, you get more opportunities to win big. Low overhead is a chance for optionality. We saw this before, but if you missed it optionality is: When William Teschhumeh Sherman marched on Savannah he never committed to any one route, keeping his enemy off balance and his options open. When […]

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Sophia Amoruso (part II)

This is part two of my notes from Sophia Amoruso’s conversation with Tim Ferriss. If you missed part one, you can find it here. There we answered: – Why start small? – Why have to have some skills and more importantly why to develop them? – How to learn quickly? – What is the most […]