Designing Your New Work Life

It all began when Dave Evans offered Bill Burnett lunch. While teaching professional lectures at Stanford and Berkeley, Dave gave Bill an idea of what kind of lectures to teach, seeing even the most prestigious university students wondering what to do with their careers.

“Let’s make a class so that students can establish their own ‘philosophy of work’ before graduation. You should give smart children a chance to think about what they are going to work for and what they are going to do so that they don’t go out into society and make silly choices. That’s how you can live a meaningful life.”

This is the moment when “Design Your Life” was born, the birthplace of Silicon Valley talent, the best lecture at Stanford Disc. Is it surprising that the school that produces talented people enthusiastically by the best innovative companies is a design school, not a world-class engineering college? Obviously, Stanford University’s “D” means design, but design schools teach how to “design ideas” rather than visible designs such as clothes, furniture, and buildings. Bill and Dave went on to teach them how to take the initiative in planning and embodying their lives. Their lectures, which started with just six students, are now Stanford’s best lectures, and, as Forbes says, have become a bible of working people around the world, helping each person lead their lives in the direction they want.

“We need to be in charge of the ‘last process’ of Stanford’s future designers,” the book tells Stanford’s last lesson in wishing happiness for students who go out to society so that dreamful, idea-filled and passionate students do not become unhappy office workers after graduation.

“If you’re not happy for 80,000 hours of work, your life will never be happy.”
Build your own philosophy that runs through work and life!

Anna thinks she can never be happy at her job now. She didn’t have such a heart from the beginning. However, as unnecessary emotional consumption increased while working, and as they were busy cutting out meaningless repetitive tasks rather than taking the initiative, it became difficult to find the meaning of work, let alone growth. Anna started putting the meaning of work on salary, not value, because she was doing something that would not be strange to quit anytime. The reason for her current work has become only money-making, and now she can endure all kinds of misfortunes and endure them day by day by day. Anna lost her work’s happiness and meaning because she failed to establish her work philosophy correctly. Many people will sympathize with her story. The passion and joy of working for the first time are gone, and they live with their work, which at some point has become a boring breadwinner.

However, people with clear work philosophy can distinguish between what is important and what is unnecessary while working, making it easier to separate happiness and unhappiness in their work lives. For example, a person who puts the meaning of work in his or her own growth works according to thoughts and logic rather than emotions. In addition, rather than weighing the immediate benefits through work, the desired future value is projected into life, focusing on work for experience, and making it an opportunity to improve skills even if you don’t want to do something. If you decide what you want to do according to your purpose of life and strive for it, that effort will eventually grow you. At this time, we must continue to ask ourselves questions. One answer that penetrates the three questions, ‘Why am I doing this?’ ‘What will I work for?’ and ‘What kind of life will I live?’ is the philosophy of your work.

Not only the MZ generation wandering about in short supply, but also office workers in their 5th to 6th years who have fallen into mannerism,
Even the leaders of the New Normal Era, who have to communicate with employees who work only in their rooms!
The birth of the bible for “working life” and “meaningful life.”

Designing your new work life is a book that teaches you how to balance money, meaning, and self-realization so that you don’t get tired by simply chasing money, and helps you establish a clear view of work and life for yourself. There are various concerns about work life, from employment, turnover, and resignation concerns to efficient work processing and communication methods. The authors provide a variety of solutions to various difficulties encountered in work life by abundantly solving cases of working people in various occupational groups, including their own experiences, but do not forget warm advice for struggling office workers.

The book, rated as a comprehensive bible of working life, gives MZ generation a good shot at growing little by little every day as the biggest driver of their work life, encourages workers to pursue their dreams before it’s too late. It doesn’t matter what position you are in. The book contains a number of great tools to find a good job, learn, contribute, and grow into what you want.

As I spent more unnecessary emotional consumption while working, and I was busy cutting out meaningless repetitive tasks rather than taking the lead in my work, it became difficult to find the meaning of work, let alone growth. I’m doing a job that’s not strange to quit anytime, so I started putting the meaning of work on salary, not value. The reason for her current work has become only money-making, and now she can endure all kinds of misfortunes and endure them day by day by day. (…) If you decide what you want to do according to your purpose of life and strive for it, that effort will eventually grow you. At this time, we must continue to ask ourselves questions. The answer that penetrates these three questions is the philosophy of your job philosophy.

Everyone can use design thinking to lead their lives in a better direction. That’s our philosophy. The same goes for business. This book contains ways to change the attitude of dissatisfied bosses or colleagues, take the initiative, come up with new ideas that break conventional wisdom, and create opportunities for self-growth. To tell you the good news, all of this is possible without having to quit your current job.

It’s hard to change behavior. People try too hard, and almost every moment they try too much and fail. However, there is another reason why many people cannot get out of unfortunate events and situations. This is because I think we should aim for a big change. Now is the time to apply other methods. The key to success is to set so-called “low standards.” Start small, set a low standard, and try something.

Numerous people worry about “chasing money or doing meaningful things.” Which side are you on? Money or meaning? There is no right answer. This is because the question is wrong. (…) There is no right answer or wrong answer to money and meaning. It is only important to live a consistent life that meets your values. Are you going in the right direction now? Check the direction and make your own compass.

Dave started working at a high-tech industrial complex in Silicon Valley. He worked hard 50-70 hours a week. I had a wife and family, but I often went on business trips because of work, and it was common to skip dinner. He always said he wished he had more time to spend with his family at home, but his actions did not match his words. Dave was very upset when his colleagues described him as a workaholic. He thought he was not a ‘real’ workaholic. This is because I thought that the kind of person who was only interested in work and money was a workaholic. But his life was like a workaholic. There was no consistency in his life.

Everyone wants to entrust meaningful tasks and important tasks. Be curious and create prototypes that can do your job better. Turn skepticism into a positive story and tell the story. By developing yourself using intrinsic motivational factors appropriately, become an autonomous and creative employee and cooperate with others. Keep trying to reach a price point in your field and focus on giving meaning to your job.

Most people think of quitting as a negative thing, but we think that quitting is an opportunity. Quitting a job is a turning point to finish what you have done well so far and start anew. Reorganize your resignation as an opportunity to beautifully wrap up the chapter for your old job and decorate the first chapter for your next job. In other words, prepare for a more “generative” resignation. From now on, let’s look at how powerful generative resignation is. Use creative resignation as an opportunity to paint your future working life. Then I can understand more accurately what kind of person I am and what motivates me.

Everyone goes through a transition period in which the old one disappears and the new one does not work perfectly. At this time, significant psychological reorganization and reconstruction take place. This is the core of the conversion process. It is a time to send old reality and identity and wait for new reality and identity. We create new processes and learn new roles. You can feel confusion and pain because you are in a fluid state. But remember that the Neutral Zone is a hotbed for a new beginning.


What’s the situation like now? She doesn’t want to return to such a dangerous situation even if the hotel resumes operations. Competition will be very fierce for the few jobs that have been created again. She wasn’t sure if she wanted to work in that kind of job again. Anna faced the moment of reinventing herself. Over the years, I have identified the essential work processes, tools, and capabilities that I have developed and found an explanation method that anyone can understand without defining myself as a hotel industry worker. Then he went out to find someone to listen to his newly improved story.

This is the time for new leadership. The same applies to organizations that will be converted to hybrid employee models or organizations that have already been converted. How can we create a “positive corporate culture” in which employees enjoy working together in project teams and immerse themselves in this time of week or a few days a month?

Designing Your Life

Stanford University’s most popular lecture tells us that
Five Principles for Designing a Dream Life, a Dream Job

The book began with a two-night Stanford Design School Life Design seminar with six students. The students were so immersed in the class that they refused to leave even after the lecture and were forced to part until it was time to close the classroom. Since then, it has been opened as a formal lecture after persistent requests from students, and more than 2,000 students have taken it so far. The lecture scored a high rating of 4.5 on the lecture evaluation site (courserank.com) of American college students, and was selected as the “most popular class at Stanford University” by the management magazine Fast Company. The dean of Stanford University of Technology said, “Can I take the course, too? I don’t know what to do after resigning from the dean,” he said, adding, “It’s worth realizing its popularity.

The two authors, who have been holding workshops on life design for various companies in Silicon Valley, including Google for years, emphasize that five ways of thinking must be premised for a well-designed life. When armed with the following five ways of thinking, you can make whatever you want, as well as the life you want.
1) Be curious: Curiosity is the fuel for our brains to learn new things. Therefore, curiosity is the first important way of thinking that must be used in life design.
2) Try: Don’t just sit on your desk and worry, try and fail constantly and find a solution.
3) Reorganize the problem: There are so many biases that suppress our thoughts and limit our choices. It is necessary to take a step back, examine prejudice, and explore the possibility of a new solution.
4) Understand that life design is a process: there is no end to life design. You have to focus on the process of achieving it rather than the result to get something even if you face an unexpected situation.
5) Ask for help. Design is a process of cooperation, and the best ideas often come from the heads of others. Ask for help, but you must know how to ask the right questions.

Get out of the mire of life with design thinking!
Make a prototype, make your own Odyssey life plan!

Many people get stuck in the life design process, unable to move forward with problems they cannot solve, unable to see other options because they are obsessed with one choice, or struggling with where and how to start even if they know the solution. At the center of the life design approach that will emerge from the quagmire is ‘circular making’, which is the core of design thinking. When it comes to life problems, the amount of reliable data is very small. Therefore, making a prototype does not jump recklessly into an unknown world, but quickly tests future scenarios and helps them fail. For example, if you’re contemplating a career change, interview someone who’s actually doing something you’re interested in, shadow him for a day, or experience it yourself through a weekend part-time job. If you think the job suits you, take it one step further, otherwise you can just make another prototype. The two authors present specific ways to successfully conduct circular interviews and circular experiences along with vivid examples of real Stanford students.

The highlight of life design is the Odyssey Plan. The two authors point out that the moment people enter the wrong path in the life design process regardless of age, education level, or career is when they think that “life will flow smoothly according to the plan if they make a proper life plan.” Life isn’t just about finding out the best life. It is important to choose one of the various plans within me and go to the next step. From that point of view, the Odyssey planning training proposed by the authors is a way to design various lives. It is to imagine three life scenarios in the next five years that are completely different from now and express them in writing and painting. The Odyssey plan is a sketch of future possibilities. These sketches are useful when choosing which direction to go in order to create a prototype and move on to the next step.

Design Your Life is not only about the Odyssey plan, but also about your health to check your current status?It provides a variety of sample forms in the text that allow readers to participate in the life design process themselves, such as Love? Play? Work Instrument Panel, Happiness Diary to find out what they can do with passion, and Mind Map to come up with as many ideas as possible. This book tells how to apply design thinking that has led Silicon Valley companies to individual life designs, not just young people taking their first steps into society, but also middle-aged workers who want to prepare for the next 10 years and think about what to do after retirement. Unlike existing vague and emotional self-development books, it starts from realizing one’s reality, breaks down false beliefs that hinder life design one by one, and provides specific courses and training methods to acquire the desired career and life.
Recognizing that a well-designed life is a constant process of creation, change, and evolution, you can recreate your career and life in the same way that amazing technologies and products were created in the world, regardless of what kind of person an individual is, what a job is, or how old it is.

Here’s the restructuring of the question, “What do you want to do later?” “What kind of person do you want to be?” or “What kind of person do you want to be?” The key to life is growth and change. In other words, life is not static and there is no specific destination. Also, life can’t be determined by answering the above questions only once. Frankly speaking, no one knows what kind of person they really want to be. The same is true of those who write down doctors, lawyers, or engineers in the desired occupation field. Such a job of hope is only an ambiguous direction for the course of life. There are numerous questions that persistently follow every step of life. What people really need is to find out what they want, what they want to be, and what they need to do to create a life they love. That’s the design of life design. -[Design Life]

“I need a better job” says, “I’m not very happy to go out and work.” It’s not a solution to the problem of raising children at home.” It’s not an appropriate problem and it’s not your real problem, but there may be problems that you think are important. We should be wary of taking our strength out of such a problem. Don’t you not solve family problems at work or start dieting again to solve work problems?

There is no single final destination in life, so you can’t enter your destination in GPS or receive detailed directions to it. All you can do is pay close attention to the clues that appear in front of you and use the tools you can use to pave the best way forward. We think the first hints are engagement and energy.
Don’t make an anchor problem that you’re obsessed with unrealistic solutions and can solve enough. Instead, get yourself out of the quagmire by reconstructing solutions, exploring possible alternatives, and creating a prototype model of ideas like hiking an easy course as a trial. The anchor problem keeps us in the mire. This is because we are obsessed with only one solution that is not effective at all that we came up with first.

One of the most effective ways to design life is to design multiple lives. It’s neither nonsense nor typo. Many lives are right. From now on, all you have to do is imagine and write down different life paths for the next five years. We call this the Odyssey Plan. (…) Of course, you can only live one life at a time, but wouldn’t it be possible to make creative and productive choices at any time if you materialize various life scenarios?

Let’s briefly summarize the reasons for making the prototype. It is to ask good questions, create experiences, reveal prejudices and speculations, fail quickly, overcome failures, move forward, experience the future in advance, and form empathy for yourself and others. Only when you accept that creating a prototype is the only way to acquire the necessary data, making a prototype becomes a key part of the life design process. Creating a prototype is certainly a good idea. Conversely, not creating a prototype is a bad idea that sometimes costs a lot. That’s for certain.

Most of the so-called dream jobs never publicly announce their job openings. For promising startups that will grow into the next generation of Google or Apple, they will not disclose their recruitment plans on the Internet before the hiring process is completed. On the other hand, among small companies with fewer than 50 employees and no human resources departments, there are good jobs to work for, but they do not regularly make job openings. In the case of large companies, the most tempting jobs are mainly announced internally. This means that most job seekers do not know. In addition, there are many cases where employees are hired through word of mouth or SNS before being released to the outside world. In other words, you can’t find a good job online.

There is a ‘set of three delusions’ that job seekers think too wrong when choosing a job. The first is the nature of work, followed by salaries and favorable colleagues.
The problem with this scenario, which considers the nature of work as a top priority, is that there is no way to know the true ‘personality of work’ until you approach the door of acceptance.

Algorithms to live by The computer science of human decisions

● “When I want to buy a house, how many houses should I see before signing a contract?”
● “Is it best to marry this person?” Wouldn’t a better person be waiting for me somewhere?”
● “Where can I park my car?” Somewhere close to the destination or somewhere far away?”
● “When should I sell S Electronics shares that are raising their stock prices and make the most profit without losing money?””

What if computer science algorithms could serve as a clue to solving small and diverse problems that arise in everyday life? Algorithms developed for computers can also help us solve problems we encounter. “Algoriths to Live by” written by Brian Christians and Tom Griffiths kindly tells us 11 algorithms that help solve almost every problem in life.

“Algolism never regrets!”
: From finding a partner for life to finding a vacant parking lot,
the power of computer science to easily calculate complex life

We live with limited time and space. And there are a lot of problems that arise from it. What should we do and what should we not do? How much can I tolerate the looseness and disarray of my space? How can we balance the new (person) and the existing familiar (person) to live the most satisfying life?
These problems may seem human-only, but they are not. Computers are bound by the same constraints. How should the processor allocate “intention” to perform all the tasks required by users with minimal time and money? How should we switch between tasks and how many tasks should we take on in the first place? What is the best way to utilize limited memory resources? Should I collect more data or act based on the data I already have?
Brian Christian, a promising best-selling author, computer engineer, and philosopher on technology, and Tom Griffith, a professor of cognitive psychology at UC Berkeley, replace our choice with a new thinking structure that is completely different from the existing problem-solving structure. Computer science’s algorithmic structure, which considers computational conflict problems, optimal selection, concentration, resource allocation, and timing, helps us make optimal choices and come up with appropriate answers to solve problems in various environments. The authors say, “Algolism never regrets,” and recommend trusting the power of computer science. Saying that the algorithms of computer science will solve the problems accumulated in our complex lives at once.

“In a world made of 0 and 1, we need algorithms rather than psychotherapists”.
: From designing algorithms for computers to utilizing algorithms for people

When we spend our daily lives, everyone who is full of worries around us – tenants who have to find the best house at their own expense, drivers looking for parking lots, suitors who are searching for lifelong mates – is all trying to make the best choice within a given time. As a result, they are stressed out and show abnormal behavior. Psychotherapists encourage them to stop being impulsive and not think too much, and comfort them with ambiguous words to find an appropriate and comfortable balance of mind. However, algorithms say firmly. That balance is 37 percent. What we need every day at the crossroads of choice is not a psychotherapist, but an algorithm. Is it really possible to apply algorithms to human life?
Today’s computers go beyond simple arithmetic and challenge themselves to communicate with people, fix damaged files, or win Go with people. These tasks are problems where the rules are not clear, some of the information needed is missing, or astronomical numbers of possibilities must be searched to find the right answer. And with the use of algorithms developed by researchers to solve the most difficult categories of problems, computers have gradually moved away from relying heavily on thorough calculations. It has developed to deal with real-world tasks that have to be solved by accepting coincidences and sacrificing accuracy, but instead shortening time and using approximations, which can be applied to human life today. So how can algorithms solve our problems?

“The age of philosophy is over!” Another wisdom to live in the digital world!”
: Algorithm Instructions for Making the Fastest and Most Reasonable Choice

This book proposes the concept of algorithm design and teaches you how to solve complex problems most quickly and make rational choices. The 11 algorithms of computer science introduced in the book are as follows.

· Optimum stop: The passage of time turns all decision-making problems into optimal stop problems. No choice can be made again. That’s when “optimal stopping” is needed. The optimal pause tells us when we look and when we jump in.
· Exploration/Use: When you are sensitively aware of how much time you have left, you need to ‘explore/use’. Exploration/use also tells us why we should take advice from the elderly. This is because it is jewel-like information collected through decades of exploration.
· Sort: Sort tells you how to organize your office, how to match your socks, and how to plug in your library books. Any problem is solved by changing the criteria to a computational problem that expands the alignment.
· Caching: Caching plays an important role in the memory structure of computers and presents a new perspective on all kinds of storage systems and memory banks in human life. The older you get, the more time it will take you to think of something. Don’t worry, the length of time delay is also an indicator of how much experience you’ve had.
· Schedule plan: A schedule plan is essential to increase productivity and live a leisurely life. Through various algorithms that allocate time, we can balance work and life.
· Bays Rule: The ‘Bays Rule’ is to guess the possibility of facts to be known based on an event when it occurs. We can conduct indirect research on the world by writing the Bayes rules to find out what people expect.
· Overfitting: The simplest may be the best plan. When our expectations are uncertain and the data is noisy, the best way is to think broadly. If you are in such an ‘overfitting’ state, you should think less.
· Mitigation: No matter how advanced the technology is, there are types of problems that cannot reach essentially perfect solutions. The best way to approach problems that cannot reach an optimal solution is ‘relaxation’. Through relaxation, we can actually compromise with reality and spend countless years pursuing perfection.
· Randomness: Random algorithms can sometimes come up with a good approximation to a difficult problem faster than all deterministic algorithms. The same goes for life. Sometimes, rather than trying to deduce thoroughly and get an answer, simply leaving it to chance may be the best answer to a problem.
· Networking: How do I know if messages are being delivered? When the networking buffer is full, virtually all packets are dropped by simply rejecting them. The same goes for our lives. Don’t make someone wait long. Line up as long as you can wait. If you don’t think you can wait, refuse. But nothing will change.
· Game Theory: Every game has a rival. We have to make decisions in a situation where we have to decide on our optimal behavior in consideration of our competitors’ reactions. The game theory of computer science speaks. “If changing your strategy does not help, try to change the game itself.” Above all, it is best to find a game where honesty comes first.

Life is full of difficult problems. And mistakes people make often tell us more about the difficult aspects of the problem than the possibility of errors in the human brain. Now, the era of solving these problems with philosophy is coming to an end. The world is driven by algorithms. If we look at the world from an algorithmic perspective and find out the underlying structure of the problem we face and the nature of the solution, we will be able to see how well we are actually solving the problem and better understand what errors we make.
Through algorithms, the book explains how we can improve our intuition, when we have to leave things to chance, how to deal with situations where we have too many choices, and what is a good way to relate to others. From finding a lifelong companion to finding a parking space, let’s transform the wisdom gained from computer science into a strategy to live a life, from how to organize emails to understand how memories work. The enlightenment gained through computer science algorithms will change our daily lives and help us understand not only other people’s minds but also our own.

The Productivity Project

How to work more meaningfully in a short time is a problem that we all always worry about. Many people have listened to advice on time management since Benjamin Franklin began telling success stories. But in today’s era of evaluating individual and organizational performance not by working hours, but by actual achievements, such advice no longer seems to work, and the popularity of smartphone productivity applications such as Ever Note or To Do List represents this reality. Chris Bailey, a young Canadian, suggests ways to live more productively in line with these changes in the times with brilliant ideas and experimental spirit.


Becky, who had been fascinated by being a productive person since her teenage years, chose a completely different path from what people thought was right to study it in more depth. He gave up two job opportunities and started a productivity project in the form of a one-person study based on experiments for a year. I searched books and papers on productivity at random, interviewed experts from all walks of life, and looked at how they spend their days productively. For more in-depth research, he systematically studied from human brain structure to biological clock rhythm, the effects of Danjeon breathing and meditation, the biological effects of coffee, and know-how to get a good night’s sleep. All of the things that I learned so far were carefully experimented with, identified techniques that actually worked and those that didn’t (alifeofproductivity.com) and then blogged the results.

Some of the experiments he conducted during the project were really interesting. One of the best examples is watching TED lectures for 70 hours a week, taking a nap for 3 hours every afternoon, and being perfectly lazy for a week. However, the author confesses that most of the experiments have pushed themselves into hell in the name of understanding productivity. Experiments such as using a smartphone for only an hour a day for three months, living in a windowless room for 10 days, and waking up at 5:30 a.m. every morning for three months were truly a great challenge. His bizarre and provocative experiments became a hot topic when he was introduced to major U.S. media, including The New York Times and TED.

Concentration and passion management are more important than time management.
how to slow down and work more consciously

The book, decorated with the concept of “My Year Crazy for Productivity,” selects and introduces 25 techniques that have actually proven effective among the thousands of productivity techniques Bailey has encountered over the past decade. The author mobilizes himself as an experiment object, performs experiments that may be called somewhat extreme, and adds to the confidence of the research by verifying the effectiveness of productivity techniques. Through various data surveys, interviews, and experiments, the author brings out new and groundbreaking concepts and ideas from the universal theme of productivity.

The advice that you should be smart rather than working hard is only the beginning. Starting with the question of why you should be productive and in what way you should be productive, how to reduce your low-impact work, how to strategically consume caffeine and alcohol, and how to manage your work hours and e-mail.

Fifty years ago, when most people worked on the factory assembly line, they were considered more productive if they did more in a short time. Today, however, productivity does not necessarily mean more work at work, as individuals change their knowledge and information into salaries. The author diagnoses that as we move from a time economy to a knowledge economy, the standard of productivity has changed from a problem of “how much work do you do” to a problem of “how much you achieve.” In order to achieve more, the author preaches that you must work more carefully and consciously, and that you must excel not only in time but also in concentration and energy management. The most productive people have enough speed to do everything they have to do, while carefully and consciously processing the weight of the work.

“Organize less time for difficult and high-achievement work”.
The difference in performance between working 90 hours a week and working 20 hours a week is insignificant.

Many challenges to existing ideas are also found in this book. When you do something important, you shouldn’t spend more time, but rather reduce it.Or, the argument that you should do less, not more, is tilted, but the author persuasively solves it.

To find out the difference in productivity between working crazily and leisurely, the author compared each achievement by repeating 90 hours of work every other week and 20 hours over four weeks. As a result, there was no significant difference in performance between working 90 hours a week and working 20 hours a week. Rather, when I worked 90 hours a week, I delayed my work or lost concentration, which led to more mistakes. On the other hand, when I worked 20 hours a week, I was able to exercise more energy and concentration in a limited time. Several studies have shown that the ideal weekly working hours are 35 to 40 hours, considering the breaks needed to handle all the work and replenish the energy and concentration required for the day.

If you have a lot of work to do over time, people think it’s usually best to work longer. But if we go beyond certain limits, we’re just busy and cling to useless things. The author advises that limiting the amount of time spent on work and increasing energy and concentration when doing important things is the key to productivity. If you’ve been working long hours for months or spending too much time on something, that means you’re using your energy and concentration unwisely.

“Focus on one thing at a time”.
If you’re busy, but you can’t achieve anything, you’re no different from being lazy.

The author’s reverse idea is that it scientifically proves its illusion against an existing system that is recognized as a major channel for multi-tasking to handle multiple tasks simultaneously, while revealing the superiority of single-tasking to focus on one task at a time.

Several studies have shown that multitasking hinders productivity, but why do many people still risk their lives here? In response, the author interprets that the work is much more interesting and encouraging when dealing with various things at once. However, if you do several things at once, you will make more mistakes and get more stressed, while your concentration and energy will be distributed between different jobs, so you can’t concentrate on anything. It has even affected memory and was found to overload the brain. This is why we don’t remember many scenes when we watch movies or dramas on smartphones or tablet PCs. On the other hand, if you focus on one thing at a time, you can pour your concentration and energy into one place and achieve more in the same time.

The author introduces a method of concentrating for a short time and taking a short break with his own solution to control distracting thoughts and increase concentration. For example, you can handle one thing for 20 minutes and have a five-minute break. The author’s harsh advice that if you are busy but can’t accomplish anything, it’s no different from being lazy, embarrassing for those who are living hard because they are busy and tired with work or who mistake themselves for being productive.


“The more valuable you do, the more troublesome it is”.
How to get close to things you don’t want to do, from exercise to work at work.

The author also discloses strategic measures to improve the habit of delaying work and to make it fun to do things that people don’t want to do, even though they have to work out and work at a company. We keep putting off our work. The author says procrastinating is a very human aspect, and advises that it is important to think about why procrastinating. The author says that the person’s personality also plays a part in delaying work, but the characteristics of the work itself are greater. Usually, it is likely to be delayed when doing something that is boring, annoying, difficult, unorganized, or not properly rewarded. This is why certain tasks are put aside until just before the deadline.

The most influential job is valuable because it is difficult and troublesome. Usually, these jobs require more time, attention, and energy than other less influential jobs. This is why the more troublesome things you do, the more annual salary you are given. The author says that the more problems one achieves, the more troublesome the work is, and the act of delaying work is an instinctive and emotional response triggered in the process. This is why it is difficult to increase productivity.

The author suggests a trick to remind people that what they dislike is not as bad as they think. Make a list of things you want to postpone, organize all the costs of delaying, and start. On the one hand, the author advises that delaying work may mean that what you are actually interested in does not match a particular task. If you keep delaying your work, it may be better to find another job.

“Drink coffee strategically rather than habitually”.
Drink after 9:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m., when cortisol levels are the lowest during the day.

Do you have any habits that seriously harm productivity? Aren’t you suffering from insomnia at night after drinking coffee habitually in the morning and drinking another cup when you feel drowsy in the afternoon? The author also introduces the secret of getting rid of many habitual behaviors that he wants to break, but gives in every time.

Drinking coffee habitually every morning is a romantic way to start the day, but it is not very helpful for your body’s energy management. The metabolic action of caffeine takes an average of 8 to 14 hours, and drinking coffee in the morning drastically reduces energy in the afternoon.

The Big Nine

Concrete suggestions for the future we dream of
Furthermore, this book presents the most advanced future of AI and mankind. It explains how to manage the direction of AI and promote international cooperation to set standards for the AI era, and specifically what changes the U.S. and Chinese governments should be made. It also explains what reforms Big Nine should implement in the future, and talks about what changes AI development groups and universities should prepare for. It also explains in detail what each of us can practice for the desirable future of AI.
The author emphasizes, “The ideal future we dream of is not just created,” and urges us to have courage and share all responsibilities and obligations. It presents 15 principles for AI development and personal information management, and provides in-depth insights on the direction of pipeline transformation in the government, Big Nine, and related academia.

composition of this book
This book consists of three parts. Part 1 details what AI is and how Big Nine played a role in the development and development of AI. It also deals in-depth with the current situation faced by Big Nine companies in the United States and Baidu, Alibaba and Tencent in China.
Part 2 talks about the future in 50 years, which is built as AI develops. Here, three scenarios are presented: an optimistic scenario, a practical scenario, and a catastrophic scenario. These three scenarios have a very wide spectrum. From weak artificial intelligence to strong artificial intelligence and even super artificial intelligence, AI’s benefits and losses are explored in detail. All three scenarios are data-based modeling results that allow us to experience firsthand how AI develops and changes our lives.
Part 3 proposes a tactical and strategic solution for all the problems identified in the scenario and presents a plan to reboot at this point. Part III contains specific recommendations that we all should practice and act on. This is for government leaders, future-conscious managers, and all of us.

The AlphaGo Zero system behaves in unpredictable ways and makes decisions that even its creators cannot understand at all. Press human (go) players in ways that cannot be duplicated or fully understood. This is a sign of the future in which AI creates its own way and acquires knowledge in ways that we do not understand.

Even if AI technology is developed and abused, there will be few problems that individuals will face. With this technology, mankind will not experience something overnight, but rather experience a gradual accumulation of minor damage, such as a finger cut on paper. If you get a slight cut on your finger, it’s simply annoying, and it’s not too much for your daily life. However, if the whole body is cut on paper and thousands of wounds are made, life will be painful, even if it does not harm life.

Nutsing (which Big Nine does on a large scale for optimization) is widely used in all our digital experiences, from automatic entry of search terms to menu screens presented when searching for local restaurants in Yelp. The goal is to help users feel that they have made the right choice no matter what they choose, but as a result, people are learning to live with far fewer choices than exist in the real world.

The e-mail address has been repurposed for login, mobile phone numbers are used to authenticate transactions, and smartphones are used to find them in the physical world. If you are a Gmail user,
Cotton Google knows you better than your spouse or partner.

The power of habit

Imagine that you have a habit of buying chocolate chip cookies every day. If so, you will gain about four kilograms soon. I made a promise several times a day to break my habit, and I put a post-it in front of the monitor that said, “No more cookies!” But every day, I’m tempted by cookies. Why are bad habits so hard to break?
This habit was actually the custom of Charles Duhig, who wrote this book. He is a former Harvard Business School (MBA) and a star reporter for the New York Times, who won almost all the awards that American journalists could receive. He says it was really hard to break the habit of buying cookies every afternoon. So I began to cover the secrets of habit to find out why it was so powerful and how to change it easily.
He studied 700 academic papers, private research conducted by dozens of multinational corporations, and interviewed 300 scientists and managers. In the process, it was found that habits had a great influence beyond personal life to organizations, businesses, and society. The book drew attention from the U.S. publishing community even before its publication, and after its publication, it was spotlighted by all U.S. media. media. Paper books, e-books, and audio books ranked first, second, and third in the economic management field side by side on the Internet bookstore Amazon, which also gained sensational popularity.

How did the supermarket know about a high school girl’s pregnancy that their parents and friends didn’t know about?
At a store in Target, the fifth largest discount store in the United States, a man asked to let him meet the manager. He was holding the mail ad that the target had sent him, and he looked very angry.
“Does it make sense to send a discount coupon to my high school daughter to buy baby clothes and cribs?”
When the manager looked at the mail, it contained maternity clothes and baby furniture advertisements sent to the male customer’s daughter. The manager apologized to the man and apologized again. A few days later, the manager called again to apologize. But the man said in an awkward voice:
“I talked to my daughter. The baby is due in August. I’m so sorry to have caused you so much trouble.”
How did the target know the high school girl’s secret? Pregnant women tend to purchase a large amount of unscented lotion from the fourth month of pregnancy. And at 20 weeks of pregnancy, many pregnant women take nutritional supplements such as calcium, magnesium, and zinc.
Targets are growing rapidly by accurately predicting consumer patterns through sophisticated habit analysis programs and establishing marketing strategies accordingly. They can guess whether they are pregnant consumers, buying gifts for pregnant friends, or even months of pregnancy. The information is cleverly used so that consumers have no choice but to stop by the target again. Not only targets, but also McDonald’s, Microsoft, Walmart, and Victoria’s Secret are studying every move in consumers’ lives. In other words, we are taking money out of our wallets by using our habits while making sure that we are not aware of it at all.

How did toothpaste, which only 7 percent of Americans used, become a necessity for people around the world?
During World War I, the U.S. military was troubled by the serious impact of the soldiers’ dental health on their combat capabilities. At that time, few people brushed their teeth. Claude Hopkins, a legendary American advertisement commissioned to advertise Pepsodant toothpaste, has advertised that brushing teeth with Pepsodant removes the toothache that feels like a tongue and can have white teeth. Tooth decay is a thin film that is naturally formed in the teeth regardless of what you eat or how often you brush your teeth. In fact, it had little to do with white people, as it disappeared just by rubbing teeth with fingers or rinsing with water. Anyway, the ad was a big success, and for the next 30 years, Pepsodant reigned as the world’s most popular toothpaste. However, the real reason Pepsodant succeeded was not because of the advertisement. Pepsodant used an additive that gave a refreshing feeling after brushing teeth. The foam when brushing teeth and the pungent feeling after brushing them played a leading role in forming the habit of brushing teeth. The toothbrushing population, which was only 6 percent before the Pepsodant campaign, has risen to 60 percent since advertising. Foam in toothpaste, shampoo, and detergent has nothing to do with cleaning power. It is only used to tame us so that bubbles can make us feel clean.

Until Febreeze, the worst failure in P&G’s history, became a product of hundreds of billions of dollars in annual sales.
Pebries, made of materials accidentally discovered by a researcher at P&G, the world’s No. 1 consumer goods company, including Gillette Razor, Pringles potato chips, and Duracell batteries, has been highly anticipated by the company since its launch. However, despite the large-scale marketing, the initial response was poor. People didn’t feel the need for this product. The marketing team scrutinized the consumer data they collected. People didn’t use Febreeze to get rid of bad smells. Instead, it was used to give a fragrant smell after cleaning or washing. The Febreeze marketing team realized that people wanted a scent (reward) after cleaning or washing, and it was able to modify all strategies and lead to a dramatic reversal. It was a long time after Febreeze advertised the removal of bad smells.

How did Starbucks make a troublemaker employee the best employee in a year?
When Starbucks was just starting to grow, executives realized that employees’ self-control was very important and wondered how to educate them. Customers who pay 5,000 won or 6,000 won for a cup of coffee want to be treated well and expect the best service. In order to make employees’ self-control a habit, they developed and trained the ‘Latte method’ so that repetitive behavior in response to specific signals (customers’ harsh expressions of dissatisfaction) can become a habit. Then, they were able to instill self-control in hot-tempered employees who shouted “get out” at customers’ harsh demands. They discovered how to make willpower a habit, greatly increasing customer satisfaction and employee concentration. So far, a total of 1 million employees have been to Starbucks in the U.S., and 140,000 are currently employed. In a sense, Starbucks is the best educational institution in the United States.

All of this is the power of habit.
What do these stories have in common? We have succeeded by focusing on a pattern that affects every part of our lives. That pattern is just a habit. Habits refer to unconscious and repetitive actions or thoughts. Many everyday behaviors, such as driving a car, looking into a cell phone, checking e-mail, and buying coffee, are not the actions we consciously choose to do, but the products of habits. Habits allow our brains to save energy and use our brains for more productive work. According to a recent study, 40% of all behavior is determined by habit. Each habit itself means little in itself, but what you eat every day, what you say to your children every night, how often you save, how often you exercise, and how you organize your thoughts and routines have a huge impact on health, productivity, economic stability and happiness. The problem is that the brain cannot distinguish between bad and good habits.

Why do we repeat the same thing when we know we’ll regret it?
What should I do to change it?
In order to rule a habit, you must first know it. In fact, all habits existing in the world, such as oversleeping, shopping, late-night snacks, smoking, and drinking, are formed through a three-step process.


Signal – Repeated Action – Reward

First, there is a signal. It’s like a trigger that automatically triggers certain actions such as place, time, and people together. In the case of Charles Duhig, the temptation of cookies always came between 3:00 and 3:30. A particular time was a sign of habit.
In the next step, repetitive behavior appears. The author wanted to eat cookies at around 3:30, so he took the elevator to a cafe on the 14th floor of the New York Times building, bought cookies, and chatted with his colleagues.
The final step is compensation. Compensation is the strongest cause of habit formation. The author says it was not easy to find out what rewards the habit of eating cookies gives. So I tried this and that experiment. When I wanted to eat cookies, I went around the neighborhood instead of going to a cafe, tried chocolate instead of cookies, and chatted with my colleagues without eating anything. As a result, his habits had nothing to do with cookies. The truth is that I wanted to get along with people.
Finding out the signals, repetitions, and rewards, he redesigned his habits. At about 3:30, I get up, look around the office, and when I see a friend, I go there and chat for 10 minutes before returning. It changed only the repetitive behavior while leaving the signals and rewards intact. Thanks to this, the temptation of cookies completely disappeared and new behavior became a habit. Thanks to him, he lost four kilograms and his wife’s nagging disappeared. As long as you can accurately grasp the habits, you can change yourself as much as you want.
However, habits do not change only personal life. Habits are powerful enough to affect groups, organizations, businesses, and society as a whole.

Core Habits: Everything changes on its own with just one change.
The first time he witnessed the amazing power of habit was in 2000 when he stayed in Iraq as a war correspondent. At that time, I heard a groundbreaking story of a U.S. military officer who peacefully disbanded demonstrators in Kupa, 150 kilometers from Baghdad. He asked Mayor Kupa to withdraw all street vendors from the square in front of the mosque, where violent protests take place. The square was always crowded with people, and at the instigation of someone, the crowd easily turned into angry demonstrators. However, the crowd’s cohesion weakened noticeably after the street vendors were withdrawn. The hungry simple participants returned home early, and no matter how noisy the agitators were, people did not gather well.

When: The Scientific Secrets of Perfect Timing

Those who need to read this book.
– People who want to make important decisions without making mistakes.
– people who want to take a slump as an opportunity to take another leap forward
– people who want to make the best use of their time
– Those who want to study effectively and do well on the test.
– Those who want to finish work on time and get off work on time.

What you can get out of this book.
– I can manage my time successfully by identifying the right timing for me.
– It is a timing problem that things don’t work out, so you can improve when you will do it.
– Work-life balance can be enjoyed through effective time distribution of work.
– It can turn a slump into an opportunity to leap forward.
– Acceptance, promotion, love, marriage…Knowing that everything depends on the timing, you can make good results.

What you’re missing is the timing!
a masterpiece that has compiled the results of numerous scholars’ studies over the past 30 years on the concept of timing.

Timing determines your life?! What if the results of employment, marriage, and health are clearly different depending on the timing? It has been the “concept of timing” that hundreds of scientists around the world have studied and hung on over the past 30 years. Economists and game theorists agonized over the first negotiation, the best bargaining chip, and cognitive scientists focused on human brain functions that vary from night to day, and wondered how to make the best decision. Social psychologists have also studied when humans can maximize their abilities in new projects. As such, ‘optimal time’ is a matter that must be considered and known by us living in this era. Daniel Pink, who has made readers discover surprising truths such as Drive and Selling is Human, also provides new insights and insights in this book. Written based on 700 academic journals and various research results, this book will help readers change their lives.

Timing has much more influence and power in our lives than we think. Author Daniel Pink, who claims timing is perhaps everything in our lives, has spent the past two years digging into the science of invisible timing with his brave researchers. More than 700 studies have been read and analyzed in various fields, including economics, anesthetics, anthropology, endocrinology, temporal biology, and social psychology. Through this book, Daniel Pink will review the problems of time that are clearly included in our human experience but are not easily visible and will tell you more specifically how to solve the problem of timing. Why is the start so important, whether it’s a quick start or a bad start? Why shouldn’t we make important decisions in the afternoon? Why does memorization work well in the early morning? Why do they do better in the morning than in the afternoon? Why did Edison make so many inventions in the middle of the night? This book contains scientific answers to all these questions. Million-selling author Daniel Pink, let’s take a look at the science of timing he says.

This book is about timing. Everyone knows that timing is important. The problem is that we don’t know much about timing. Our lives are a constant series of decisions about when and when. When to change jobs, when to deliver bad news, when to schedule classes, when to close the marriage, when to run a marathon, when to start working… etc.. However, these decisions are often rife with intuition and speculation. I will prove through books that timing is science. The science of timing is a multifaceted and multifaceted study that penetrates human conditions from a new perspective and guides them to work smarter and live better.


German psychologist Hermann Ebbinghaus made pioneering achievements in this field by discovering that people’s memory is better in the morning than at night through experiments that make them memorize and remember meaningless listed words. Since then, several people have explored brain activity in various fields, drawing three key conclusions. First, our cognitive abilities do not remain constant in a single day. We are usually awake for about 16 hours, but our cognitive abilities continue to change at that time, and the ups and downs are regular and predictable to some extent. In other words, we become smarter and more creative at that time than at this time. Second, the ups and downs of the day are worse than we feel. According to Russell Foster, a neuroscientist and time biologist at Oxford University, changes in performance between the highest and lowest points of the day can be compared to changes in driving function when drinking more than the blood alcohol level equivalent to drinking. Other studies show that the effect of time zones can create a 20% difference in performance on cognitive tasks.


However, it is time to pay more attention to lunch. This is because lunch has a much greater impact on our performance than we think. According to a 2016 report of 800 office workers working in 11 different organizations, including information and communication, education, and media, more people than expected were able to finish lunch without leaving. However, it turns out that office workers who leave the office to eat are more willing to work and cope with the stress of work not only for the rest of the day but also for the rest of the year.
“Lunchtime is an important recovery device that promotes health and welfare.” That’s what the research team says. Lunch is especially important for office workers who are mentally and emotionally burdened. In the case of jobs that require close cooperation like firefighters, lunch together has the effect of enhancing teamwork.
But lunch is not all the same. Two key elements must be in place to expect a powerful lunch effect. It is autonomy and separation. Autonomy has some control over what you do, how and how you do it, and who you work with, and is a very important factor in improving performance, especially in complex tasks. However, there is something as important as that. It’s time to take a break from complicated work. How office workers use lunchtime is no less important than what they do during lunchtime.


A nap is a valuable rest that must be taken as a clever response to the lowest point. A nap offers two important benefits. First, improve cognitive performance. Second, improve mental and physical health.
In many ways, naps are the zamboni of our brains. A nap neatly removes the flaw-like mental wounds on the ice sheet caused by the day. A well-known NASA study found that astronauts who took a nap for about 40 minutes had a 34 percent faster reaction time and doubled their arousal. According to a study by the University of California, Berkeley, afternoon naps improve the brain’s ability to learn. People who take a nap have more time to keep information than those who don’t. People who take a nap are twice as likely to solve complex problems as those who do not take a nap or do other activities at that time. Naps not only enhance short-term memory, but also enhance memory of association, such as thinking of a name by looking at a face. The overall benefits of napping on the brain increase with age. According to some academic data that outlined the literature on napping, even those who get enough sleep at night can greatly improve their mood, arousal, and cognitive performance. Naps even increase the intensity of ‘immersion flow’.

Alter and Hersheyfield found that as many as 48 percent of those who first participated in the marathon were caught in nine cases. Among them, 29 years old was the most common. 29 years old was twice as old as 28 or 30. Meanwhile, the number of people participating in the marathon for the first time decreased in their early 40s, but suddenly increased at 49. 49 years old was about three times more likely to run a marathon than a year older. Moreover, as it approaches the end of the 10-year period, the speed of the runner also increases. The record of people who participated in marathons several times was better when they were 29 and 39 than two years ago or two years later. There is no logical meaning to this effort effect at the end of the 10-year period. Morozowski, a scientist who is trying to run a marathon, told me. “Because life is short. We continue to pay attention to the way we live. I wanted to challenge myself before I turned 60. That’s why I did it.” He spoke thus.. Australian artist Hong Lee is also said to have changed his mind when he saw an age mileage sign at some point. “As I approached the age of 30, I felt like I had to do something before the 29th year was over. I didn’t want to spend the last year like that.” That’s what she told me that.

When Breath Becomes Air

[New York Times] Winning first place for 12 weeks in a row, the hottest topic in the first half of 2016.
the last record of a 36-year-old doctor who impressed the world.

Thirty-six, the last year of a neurosurgery resident who is about to become a specialist. The fourth stage of lung cancer, which I encountered just when I felt like I could get the life I wanted after a harsh training life that lasted 14 hours a day, completely changed Paul Kalaniti’s life. His last two years of fighting death while treating patients with fatal brain damage as a doctor become a patient and encountering death unfold in intelligent and fluent language.

Eight months after his first cancer sentence in 2013, the column How Long Have I Got Left, which he wrote in the New York Times in January 2014, resonated tremendously. Here, he was sentenced to death, but desperately expressed the dilemma of an incurable patient who does not know exactly when he will die.

If it is clear how many months or years are left, the way forward will be clear. In three months, I will spend the time with my family. If there is a year left, I will write a book that I have always wanted to write. In 10 years, he will return to the hospital to treat patients.
My doctor only says this. “I can’t tell you how much time I have left. You have to find out for yourself what’s most important.”

If he doesn’t know exactly when he’s going to die, he has no choice but to live on. He returned to the operating room and pulled off a tremendous workload as the oldest resident, and his wife Lucy succeeds in pregnancy with artificial insemination. However, ahead of the resident examination, the cancer rapidly worsens, giving up his career as a doctor, and wandering around with his wife at the end of his life. Eventually, eight months after his daughter, Cady, was born, he refused resuscitation and died in the arms of his beloved family with a clear mind. After Paul Kalaniti’s death in March 2015, the epilogue of the book, which he wrote with all his might, was written by his wife Lucy.

The book became the No. 1 bestseller of the New York Times in January 2016 with the publication of the book in the U.S. Random House, Germany, Italy, and Brazil as soon as the book was released in December 2014, and is now in the top 20 bestseller list for 30 consecutive weeks. Copyright has been exported to 38 countries around the world, and it became a bestseller immediately after its publication in the UK, Germany, Italy, and Canada.

cross between literature, philosophy, and medicine to inquire about the meaning of life
An unprecedented essay that combines experience and contemplation, emotion and intelligence.

The author was fascinated by adolescent literature. He was fascinated by the theme of what makes life meaningful, and literature conveyed the meaning of life in the form of a story. Then he discovered that the human mind is the action of the brain and majored in English and biology at Stanford University. Exploring humans, who are both physiological and spiritual beings, he eventually decides to become a doctor. It was an opportunity to continue to think about the question of “what makes human life meaningful even in the face of physical decline and death by connecting with the suffering.””

Paul Kalaniti chose his field of expertise in that very sense of vocation. “Neurosurgery seemed to be the most challenging and most direct to meaning, identity, and death.” The author’s life, which has been choosing a career as a doctor from humanities insights, treating patients with fatal brain damage, and constantly thinking about what role medicine, science can play in human life, and what good doctors are like.

Neurosurgeons work in the harsh furnace of identity. All brain surgery inevitably manipulates the brain, which is the essence of human beings, and when talking to patients undergoing brain surgery, they have no choice but to face the problem of identity. The point is not simply living or dying, but which is worth living. What choice would you make if you couldn’t speak in exchange for a few more months of life expectancy. What if you try to stop the seizure and you can’t use your right hand? How severe is your child going to suffer and say that it would be better to die? (in the text)

And finally, the author is sentenced to death at the age of 36 and puts his patients in a position. Just as he didn’t know when he would die before he got cancer, he despair at the fact that he didn’t know when he would die after the diagnosis of stage 4 lung cancer. If you don’t know when you’re going to die, you have to keep living. with a keen awareness of death much closer than before. He recounts Samuel Beckett’s lines. “I can’t keep going. I can’t go on. I’ll go on). Even if I’m dying, I’m still alive until I actually die. Instead of dying, I made up my mind to continue living.”

There was a clear hope that the future would not be taken away even when the body was collapsing toward death. Struggling to press the keyboard in the pain of cracking his fingertips due to chemotherapy, Paul Callaniti finally left a letter to his daughter.

If there comes a moment when you have to explain how you’ve lived, what you’ve done, what you’ve done to the world, I hope you don’t forget that you’ve filled your dying father’s days with joy. It was a joy that my father had never felt in his life, and as a result, he can now relax with satisfaction without wanting more. At this moment, it’s a really big deal for me. (in the text)

Dr. Lucy Kalanithi and Dr. Paul Kalanithi with their daughter, Elizabeth Acadia.

Neurosurgeons work in the harsh furnace of identity. All brain surgery inevitably manipulates the brain, which is the essence of human beings, and when talking to patients undergoing brain surgery, they have no choice but to face the problem of identity. In addition, brain surgery is usually the most dramatic event in life for patients and their families, so it has a huge impact, as is the case with major events in life. At this critical turning point, the point is not simply living or dying, but which is worth living. What choice would you make if you or your mother couldn’t speak in exchange for a few more months of life? What if you had to risk vision loss to completely eliminate the low possibility of a fatal cerebral hemorrhage? What if you try to stop the seizure and you can’t use your right hand? How severe is your child going to suffer and say that it would be better to die?

The unique pain caused by severe brain damage sometimes causes greater pain to the family than to the patient. Therefore, doctors are not the only ones who are not fully convinced of the meaning. Families gathered around their loved ones, who are lying down with their brains injured, also do not fully realize the meaning. They look at the past. I think the memories I have built up so far, the feelings of love that I feel anew, all of these are represented by the body in front of them. But I see the future ahead. A respirator connected through a hole drilled in the neck by surgery, a transparent liquid dripping from the hole drilled in the abdomen, and a long-lasting painful treatment process and incomplete recovery. Sometimes patients cannot return to the way they used to be.

asked Lucy, who was lying next to him one night. “Honey, what’s the scariest or saddest thing?” “Breaking up with you.” I knew it would be a great pleasure for my family to have a baby. Besides, I couldn’t bear to think that Lucy had no husband or baby after my death. But I insisted that Lucy should make the final decision. Eventually, she had to raise the baby by herself, but if my illness worsened, it would have been harder to take care of me. “Can we spend the right time together when we have a baby?” asked Lucy. “Wouldn’t death be more painful if I had to break up with the baby?” “But wouldn’t the baby be a wonderful gift?” I said. Lucy and I felt life wasn’t just about avoiding pain.

In the end, it was literature that revived me during this period. A very uncertain future was making me helpless. Everywhere I looked back, the shadow of death was so deep that I felt that every action was meaningless. However, I remember the moment when the anxiety that weighed on me disappeared and the sea of anxiety that seemed impossible to pass by split. As usual, I woke up feeling pain, and there was nothing to do after breakfast. The moment I thought, “I can’t keep going,” a response came to me. It was also a phrase from Samuel Beckett that I learned long ago when I was an undergraduate. “But I’ll keep going.” I got out of bed, took a step forward, and repeated the phrase over and over again. “I can’t keep going, but I’ll keep going — p.I can’t go on. I’ll go on).”

When you get seriously ill, the outline of your life becomes very clear. I knew I was going to die. But that was a fact that I had known before. My knowledge remained the same, but my ability to plan my life was completely ruined. As long as I know how much time I have left, what I will do will become clear. If there were three months left, I would spend time with my family. I’ll write a book in a year. In 10 years, I will return to a life of treating people’s diseases. The fact that we can only live one day at a time didn’t help much. What the hell should I do with that day?

“Dad, would you like to hug your daughter?” the nurse asked me. “Well, my body was so cold,” said the clatter of teeth. “But I still want to hug you.”They wrapped my daughter in a blanket and handed her to me. As we felt the weight of the child with one arm and held Lucy’s hand with the other arm, the possibility of life seemed to unfold in front of us. Cancer cells in my body are still dying or growing again. On the broad horizon before me, I saw something simpler than that, not an empty wasteland. It was a blank page where I had to keep writing.

How to Get Noticed by Your Boss’s Boss

You’re bright. You have good ideas, insights, and the ambition to take on more. But you aren’t getting the opportunities you want, and your manager has not been helpful. How do you get noticed by senior leadership without going over your boss’s head?

To help me answer this question, I reached out to two of my most successful clients: Dave MacKeen, CEO of Eliassen Group, a strategic consulting and talent solutions provider with 21 offices across the United States, and Chuck Cohen, Managing Director of Benco Dental, the largest privately owned dental distributor in the U.S.

Chuck and Dave have decades of leadership experience during which they’ve been on the lookout for “future stars” or “high potentials.” These employees are often identified as hard workers with the drive to make a difference — not only in the company’s success but also in the success of those around them. They go above and beyond their job titles and get noticed because they demonstrate potential to do great work on a more advanced level.

After putting our collective heads together, Chuck, Dave, and I landed on ten steps you can take to be recognized by senior leadership as one of them. If followed, these actions can help you grow and move toward greater opportunities — without coming off as a braggart or upsetting your direct manager.

Demonstrate your commitment to your growth and to the company. One way to show how serious you are is to invest time outside of the office in learning skills that will help you grow and contribute to the company. This could mean taking courses that support the work you are doing, or reading texts in the areas you want to master. For example, if you want to get better at developing strategy, ask your boss (and boss’s boss) if they can recommend any books. Another way to show commitment to growth is to tell your boss that you’re interested in taking on special projects, ones that will both help the company reach its goals and provide you with an opportunity to stretch yourself.

Focus on the team’s success, rather than your own. While the voice of ambition may be telling you to focus on your own success, senior leadership notices those who work collaboratively and support others. They recognize that the greatest opportunity for success lies in a team working well togetherIt’s easy to notice someone who gives their time and advice to help make others successful,” says Dave, “whether they be their direct reports or peers. Someone who makes those around them better is invaluable.”

Know your numbers and take ownership of your work. Whatever part of the business you own, small or large, you have to know it inside out, and be ready to discuss the performance metrics and business analytics that matter most (revenue, profit and loss, etc.). You want to have a good idea of where you stand within the larger organization, especially in moments when all eyes are on you — such as presentations, meetings, or project reports. When you are able to prove the value of your contributions, you are able to prove the value of your worth as an employee and team member. Think of it as an opportunity to show senior leaders why they should be paying attention to you. Remember, though, this also means taking full responsibility for your failures. Adopt a “no excuses” mentality. Doing so shows a level of self-awareness that is inherent to great leadership.

Do what you say you will and do it well.Once you commit to something, commit to doing it well. When opportunities arise, execs are looking for someone with a good track record of getting the job done and bringing in positive results. This means your name needs to be associated with good work. Those who can take on small projects and hit a home run are more likely to be asked to take on bigger projects later.

Continually train yourself to think strategically. Being a strategic thinker is imperative to moving forward into roles with more responsibility. The best leaders know how to balance working “on” the business (strategy) with working “in” the business (day-to-day operations). When working “on” the business, they must be able to look beyond their to-do lists and think strategically about which opportunities will help the organization reach its larger goals. To do this, you have to be able to see the big picture, and keep it in mind when making decisions. This is a skill that doesn’t always come naturally. “If you want to get good at strategic thinking,” says Chuck, “you have to practice. It’s a muscle that needs to be exercised. The more you work on it, the better you’ll get.”

Challenge old ways and find new solutions. Do you see a different approach to a problem your company is facing? Maybe a creative way to meet a new challenge? If your organization is forward-thinking, all ideas should be welcome, particularly if you present them with humility and an appreciation for past efforts. The next time you have an innovative solution to a difficult problem, share it openly to show what you have to contribute. “I notice people who challenge the current process and communicate the possibilities of a different solution,” says Dave. “In our organization, people rally around them. We give these people more responsibilities. They don’t have to ask.”

Consistently improve your communication skills. You don’t have to be the smartest person in the room, but you do need to be thoughtful during your interactions with others. Whether you are giving a presentation, working on a group project, or having a difficult conversation with your boss, it’s important to know your audience and prepare how you will communicate with them in advance. Every person and situation will ask something different of you — so be adaptable and know how to adjust. You may want to project more confidence during a presentation, for example, but be more humble when working with peers. You may want to approach your boss with curiosity in some scenarios, but in others, approach them with data to support your point. It’s always a good idea, however, to follow up with others and make sure you clearly understand their expectations.

Build relationships with people throughout the company. Don’t just stay within your “wing” of the building. Look for opportunities to connect and collaborate with other key players in your organization. When you build connections, you expand your network of allies and increase your visibility and influence. “Great leaders don’t just wait to be asked, they put themselves in positions and situations where they’re more likely to be asked,” noted Chuck. When you work collaboratively and cross-functionally, your name will keep coming up for all the right reasons.

Live the values and purpose of the organization. Organizations use purpose and value statements to communicate what is and isn’t expected of employees. Values speak to what an organization seeks not only in its staff, but in its leaders as well. A strong leader knows the values, lives them, and encourages the upholding of the values in others. “A person doesn’t need to be the most vocal or work the most hours to be noticed,” says Dave. “It’s the person that demonstrates the values and ethics of the organization and lives the purpose, who will inspire people to follow them.” The best way to show your commitment to your company’s purpose and values is to talk about them. In meetings, give kudos to colleagues whose actions align with your organization’s values, and when discussing projects of your own, note how they reflect the company’s core purpose. In doing so you are saying to others, “I’m paying attention,  and I’m noting when we do great work.”

Raise your hand. Don’t be afraid to ask for opportunities to show your skills and talents. While there is certainly a line to be walked here — you don’t want to push too hard, or repeatedly ask the same question — showing initiative is always a good thing. If you see an area where you believe you can be an asset to the company and support strategic initiatives, ask to participate. Explain why you believe you can make a valuable contribution, as well as what you will gain from the opportunity. Ultimately, your boss and boss’ boss want to put you in a spot where you can do the most. Sometimes you’ve got to identify where that is and ask for it.

There is no short path to getting noticed. And even if you find one, you may not have what you need to do the job well if you get there prematurely. But if you focus on these ten key areas with dedication, patience, and the acceptance that growing a stellar career takes some time, you’ll keep moving in the right direction and be ready for what’s next when it comes.

Head shot of Melissa Raffoni

is CEO of The Raffoni Group, a boutique professional services firm that helps CEOs realize their highest ambitions while improving the quality of their personal and professional lives. She is recognized for her thought leadership in the areas of CEO effectiveness, strategy, execution, leadership and organizational alignment.

Source: Harvard Business Review Oct 2019

When Data Creates Competitive Advantage

Many executives and investors assume that it’s possible to use customer-data capabilities to gain an unbeatable competitive edge. The more customers you have, the more data you can gather, and that data, when analyzed with machine-learning tools, allows you to offer a better product that attracts more customers. You can then collect even more data and eventually marginalize your competitors in the same way that businesses with sizable network effects do. Or so the thinking goes. More often than not, this assumption is wrong. In most instances people grossly overestimate the advantage that data confers.

The virtuous cycles generated by data-enabled learning may look similar to those of regular network effects, wherein an offering—like a social media platform—becomes more valuable as more people use it and ultimately garners a critical mass of users that shuts out competitors. But in practice regular network effects last longer and tend to be more powerful. To establish the strongest competitive position, you need them and data-enabled learning. However, few companies are able to develop both. Nevertheless under the right conditions customer-generated data can help you build competitive defenses, even if network effects aren’t present. In this article we’ll walk you through what those conditions are and explain how to evaluate whether they apply to your business.

What Has Changed?

Companies built on data have been around for a long time. Take credit bureaus and the information aggregators LexisNexis, Thomson Reuters, and Bloomberg, just to name a few. Those companies are protected by significant barriers to entry because of the economies of scale involved in acquiring and structuring huge amounts of data, but their business models don’t involve gleaning data from customers and mining it to understand how to improve offerings.

Gathering customer information and using it to make better products and services is an age-old strategy, but the process used to be slow, limited in scope, and difficult to scale up. For automakers, consumer-packaged-goods companies, and many other traditional manufacturers, it required crunching sales data, conducting customer surveys, and holding focus groups. But the sales data often wasn’t linked to individual customers, and since surveys and focus groups were expensive and time-consuming, only data from a relatively small number of customers was collected.

That changed dramatically with the advent of the cloud and new technologies that allow firms to quickly process and make sense of vast amounts of data. Internet-connected products and services can now directly collect information on customers, including their personal details, search behavior, choices of content, communications, social media posts, GPS location, and usage patterns. After machine-learning algorithms analyze this “digital exhaust,” a company’s offerings can be automatically adjusted to reflect the findings and even tailored to individuals.

These developments make data-enabled learning much more powerful than the customer insights companies produced in the past. They do not, however, guarantee defensible barriers.

Building Moats with Data-Enabled Learning

To determine to what degree a competitive advantage provided by data-enabled learning is sustainable, companies should answer seven questions:

1. How much value is added by customer data relative to the stand-alone value of the offering?

The higher the value added, the greater the chance that it will create a lasting edge. Let’s look at a business where the value of customer data is very high: Mobileye, the leading provider of advanced driver-assistance systems (ADAS), which include collision-prevention and lane-departure warnings for vehicles. Mobileye sells its systems mainly to car manufacturers, which test them extensively before incorporating them into their products. It’s crucial for the systems to be fail-safe, and the testing data is essential to improving their accuracy. By gathering it from dozens of its customers, Mobileye has been able to raise the accuracy of its ADAS to 99.99%.

While insights from data are powerful, they don’t guarantee defensible barriers.

Conversely, the value of learning from customers is relatively low for makers of smart televisions. Some now include software that can provide personalized recommendations for shows or movies based on an individual’s viewing habits as well as what’s popular with other users. So far, consumers don’t care much about this feature (which is also offered by streaming service providers such as Amazon and Netflix). They largely consider TV size, picture quality, ease of use, and durability when making purchasing decisions. If learning from customers was a bigger factor, perhaps the smart TV business would be less competitive.

2. How quickly does the marginal value of data-enabled learning drop off?

In other words, how soon does the company reach a point where additional customer data no longer enhances the value of an offering? The more slowly the marginal value decreases, the stronger the barrier is. Note that when answering this question, you should judge the value of the learning by customers’ willingness to pay and not by some other application-specific measure, such as the percentage of chat-bot queries that could be answered correctly or the fraction of times a movie recommendation was clicked on.

Let’s say you graphed the accuracy of Mobileye’s ADAS as a function of customer usage (total miles driven by car manufacturers testing it) and found that a few manufacturers and a moderate level of testing would be sufficient to achieve, say, 90% accuracy—but that a lot more testing with a bigger set of car manufacturers would be needed to get to 99%, let alone 99.99%. Interpreting that to mean that the customer data’s marginal value was rapidly decreasing would, of course, be incorrect: The value of the additional 9-percentage-point (or even a 0.99-point) improvement in accuracy remains extremely high, given the life-or-death implications. It would be difficult for any individual car manufacturer—even the largest one—to generate the necessary amount of data on its own or for any potential Mobileye competitors to replicate the data. That’s why Mobileye was able to carve out a dominant position in the ADAS market, making it a highly attractive acquisition for Intel, which bought it for $15 billion in 2017.

When the marginal value of learning from customer data remains high even after a very large customer base has been acquired, products and services tend to have significant competitive advantages. You can see this with systems designed to predict rare diseases (such as those offered by RDMD) and online search engines such as Baidu and Google. Although Microsoft has invested many years and billions of dollars in Bing, it has been unable to shake Google’s dominance in search. Search engines and disease-prediction systems all need huge amounts of user data to provide consistently reliable results.

A counterexample of a business where the marginal value of user data drops off quickly is smart thermostats. These products need only a few days to learn users’ temperature preferences throughout the day. In this context data-enabled learning can’t provide much competitive advantage. Although it launched the first smart thermostats that learn from customer behavior in 2011, Nest (acquired by Google in 2014) now faces significant competition from players such as Ecobee and Honeywell.

3. How fast does the relevance of the user data depreciate?

If the data becomes obsolete quickly, then all other things being equal, it will be easier for a rival to enter the market, because it doesn’t need to match the incumbent’s years of learning from data.

All the data Mobileye has accumulated over the years from car manufacturers remains valuable in the current versions of its products. So does the data on search-engine users that Google has collected over decades. Although searches for some terms may become rare over time while searches for new ones might start appearing more frequently, having years of historical search data is of undeniable value in serving today’s users. Their data’s low depreciation rate helps explain why both Mobileye and Google Search have proved to be very resilient businesses.

With casual social games for computers and mobile devices, however, the value of learning from user data tends to decrease quickly. In 2009 this market took off when Zynga introduced its highly successful FarmVille game. While the company was famous for relying heavily on user-data analytics to make design decisions, it turned out that the insights learned from one game did not transfer very well to the next: Casual social games are subject to fads, and user preferences shift quickly over time, making it difficult to build sustainable data-driven competitive advantages. After a few more successes, including FarmVille 2 and CityVille, Zynga stopped producing new hits, and in 2013 it lost nearly half its user base. It was superseded by game makers like Supercell (Clash of Clans) and Epic Games (Fortnite). After reaching a peak of $10.4 billion in 2012, Zynga’s market value languished below $4 billion for most of the next six years.

4. Is the data proprietary—meaning it can’t be purchased from other sources, easily copied, or reverse-engineered?

Having unique customer data with few or no substitutes is critical to creating a defensible barrier. Consider Adaviv, a Boston-area start-up we’ve invested in, which offers a crop-management system that allows growers (now primarily of cannabis) to continuously monitor individual plants. The system relies on AI, computer-vision software, and a proprietary data-annotation technique to track plant biometrics not visible to the human eye, such as early signs of disease or lack of adequate nutrients. It then translates the data into insights that growers can use to prevent disease outbreaks and improve yields. The more growers Adaviv serves, the broader the range of variants, agricultural conditions, and other factors it can learn about, and the greater the accuracy of its predictions for new and existing customers. Contrast its situation with that of spam-filter providers, which can acquire user data relatively cheaply. That helps explain the existence of dozens of such providers.

It’s important to keep in mind that technological progress can undermine a position based on unique or proprietary data. A case in point is speech-recognition software. Historically, users needed to train the software to understand their individual voices and speech patterns, and the more a person used it, the more accurate it became. This market was dominated by Nuance’s Dragon solutions for many years. However, the past decade has seen rapid improvements in speaker-independent speech-recognition systems, which can be trained on publicly available sets of speech data and take minimal or no time to learn to understand a new speaker’s voice. These advances have allowed many companies to provide new speech-recognition applications (automated customer service over the phone, automated meeting transcript services, virtual assistants), and they’re putting increasing pressure on Nuance in its core markets.

5. How hard is it to imitate product improvements that are based on customer data?

Even when the data is unique or proprietary and produces valuable insights, it’s difficult to build a durable competitive advantage if the resulting enhancements can be copied by competitors without similar data.

A couple of factors affect companies’ ability to overcome this challenge. One is whether the improvements are hidden or deeply embedded in a complex production process, making them hard to replicate. Pandora, the music-streaming service, benefits from this barrier. Its offering leveraged the firm’s proprietary Music Genome Project, which categorized millions of songs on the basis of some 450 attributes, allowing Pandora to customize radio stations to individual users’ preferences. The more a user listens to his or her stations and rates songs up or down, the better Pandora can tailor musical selections to that user. Such customization cannot be easily imitated by any rival because it is deeply tied to the Music Genome Project. In contrast, the design improvements based on learning from the customer use of many office-productivity software products—such as Calendly for coordinating calendars and Doodle for polling people about meeting times—can be easily observed and copied. That’s why dozens of companies offer similar software.

The second factor is how quickly the insights from customer data change. The more rapidly they do so, the harder they are for others to imitate. For example, many design features of the Google Maps interface can be easily copied (and they have been, by Apple Maps, among others). But a key part of Google Maps’ value is its ability to predict traffic and recommend optimal routes, which is much harder to copy because it leverages real-time user data that becomes obsolete within minutes. Only companies with similarly large user bases (such as Apple in the United States) can hope to replicate that feature. Apple Maps is closing the gap with Google Maps in the United States, but not in countries where Apple has a relatively small user base.

6. Does the data from one user help improve the product for the same user or for others?

Ideally, it will do both, but the difference between the two is important. When data from one user improves the product for that person, the firm can individually customize it, creating switching costs. When data from one user improves the product for other users, this can—but may not—create network effects. Both kinds of enhancements help provide a barrier to entry, but the former makes existingcustomers very sticky, whereas the latter provides a key advantage in competing for new customers.

For example, Pandora was the first big player in digital music streaming but then fell behind Spotify and Apple Music, which are still growing. As we noted, Pandora’s main selling point is that it can tailor stations to each user’s tastes. But learning across users is very limited: An individual user’s up-or-down votes allow Pandora to identify music attributes that the user likes and then serve that person songs sharing those attributes. In contrast, Spotify focused a lot more on providing users with sharing and discovery features, such as the ability to search and listen to other people’s stations, thereby creating direct network effects and luring additional customers. Pandora’s service remains available only in the United States (where it has a base of loyal users), while Spotify and Apple Music have become global players. And though Pandora was acquired by Sirius XM for $3.5 billion in February 2019, Spotify became a public company in April 2018 and as of early November 2019 was worth $26 billion. Clearly, customization based on learning from an individual user’s data helps keep existing customers locked in, but it doesn’t lead to the type of exponential growth that network effects produce.

7. How fast can the insights from user data be incorporated into products?

Rapid learning cycles make it hard for competitors to catch up, especially if multiple product-improvement cycles occur during the average customer’s contract. But when it takes years or successive product generations to make enhancements based on the data, competitors have more of a chance to innovate in the interim and start collecting their own user data. So the competitive advantage from customer data is stronger when the learning from today’s customers translates into more-frequent improvements of the product for those same customers rather than just for futurecustomers of the product or service. Several of the product examples we’ve discussed already—maps, search engines, and AI-based crop-management systems—can be quickly updated to incorporate the learning from current customers.

A counterexample is offered by direct online lenders, such as LendUp and LendingPoint, which learn how to make better loan decisions by examining users’ repayment history and how it correlates with various aspects of users’ profiles and behavior. Here, the only learning that is relevant to current borrowers is that from previous borrowers, which is already reflected in the contracts and rates that current borrowers are offered. There’s no reason for borrowers to care about any future learning that the lender may benefit from, since their existing contracts won’t be affected. For that reason, customers don’t worry about how many other borrowers will sign up when deciding whether to take a loan from a particular lender. Existing borrowers might prefer to stick with their current lenders, which know them better than other lenders do, but the market for new borrowers remains very competitive.

Does Data Confer Network Effects?

The answers to questions 6 and 7 will tell you whether data-enabled learning will create true network effects. When learning from one customer translates into a better experience for other customers and when that learning can be incorporated into a product fast enough to benefit its current users, customers will care about how many other people are adopting the product. The mechanism at work here is very similar to the one underlying network effects with online platforms. The difference is that platform users prefer to join bigger networks because they want more people to interact with, not because more users generate more insights that improve products.

Let’s look at Google Maps again. Drivers use it in part because they expect many others to employ it too, and the more traffic data the software gathers from them, the better its predictions on road conditions and travel times. Google Search and Adaviv’s AI-based crop-management system also enjoy data-enabled network effects.

Often companies can level the playing field by buying data from alternative sources.

Like regular network effects, data-enabled ones can create barriers to entry. Both types of effects present a huge cold-start, or chicken-or-egg, challenge: Businesses aiming to build regular network effects need to attract some minimum number of users to get the effects started, and those aiming to achieve data-enabled network effects need some initial amount of data to start the virtuous cycle of learning.

Despite these similarities, regular network effects and data-enabled network effects have key differences, and they tend to make advantages based on the regular ones stronger. First, the cold-start problem is usually less severe with data-enabled network effects, because buying data is easier than buying customers. Often, alternative sources of data, even if not perfect, can significantly level the playing field by removing the need for a big customer base.

Second, to produce lasting data-enabled network effects, the firm has to work constantly to learn from customer data. In contrast, as Intuit cofounder Scott Cook has often said, “products that benefit from [regular] network effects get better while I sleep.” With regular network effects, interactions between customers (and possibly with third-party providers of complementary offerings) create value even if the platform stops innovating. Even if a new social network offered users objectively better features than Facebook does (for instance, better privacy protection), it would still have to contend with Facebook’s powerful network effects—users want to be on the same social platform as most other users.

Third, in many cases nearly all the benefits of learning from customer data can be achieved with relatively low numbers of customers. And in some applications (like speech recognition), dramatic improvements in AI will reduce the need for customer data to the point where the value of data-enabled learning might disappear completely. Regular network effects, on the other hand, extend further and are more resilient: An additional customer still typically enhances value for existing customers (who can interact or transact with him or her), even when the number of existing customers is already very large.

CONCLUSION

As even mundane consumer products become smart and connected—new kinds of clothing, for instance, can now react to weather conditions and track mileage and vital signs—data-enabled learning will be used to enhance and personalize more and more offerings. However, their providers won’t build strong competitive positions unless the value added by customer data is high and lasting, the data is proprietary and leads to product improvements that are hard to copy, or the data-enabled learning creates network effects.

In the decades ahead, improving offerings with customer data will be a prerequisite for staying in the game, and it may give incumbents an edge over new entrants. But in most cases it will not generate winner-take-all dynamics. Instead, the most valuable and powerful businesses for the foreseeable future will be those that are both built on regular network effects and enhanced by data-enabled learning, like Alibaba’s and Amazon’s marketplaces, Apple’s App Store, and Facebook’s social networks.

Head shot of Andrei Hagiu

 is an associate professor of information systems at Boston University’s Questrom School of Business.

Head shot of Julian Wright

is a professor of economics at National University of Singapore.

Source: Harvard Business Review Jan-Feb 2020