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Trash talk hurts, even when it comes from a robot - Neuroscience News

Each participant played the game 35 times with the robot, while either soaking in encouraging words from the robot or getting their ears singed with dismissive remarks. Although the human players’ rationality improved as the number of games played increased, those who were criticized by the robot didn’t score as well as those who were praised.

How Superhuman Built an Engine to Find Product/Market Fit | First Round Review

The product/market fit definitions I had found were vivid and compelling, but they were lagging indicators — by the time investment bankers are staking out your house, you already have product/market fit. Instead, Ellis had found a leading indicator: just ask users “how would you feel if you could no longer use the product?” and measure the percent who answer “very disappointed.” After benchmarking nearly a hundred startups with his customer development survey, Ellis found that the magic number was 40%. Companies that struggled to find growth almost always had less than 40% of users respond “very disappointed,” whereas companies with strong traction almost always exceeded that threshold.

Yale study shows class bias in hiring based on few seconds of speech | YaleNews

The researchers based their findings on five separate studies. The first four examined the extent that people accurately perceive social class based on a few seconds of speech. They found that reciting seven random words is sufficient to allow people to discern the speaker’s social class with above-chance accuracy. They discovered that speech adhering to subjective standards for English as well as digital standards — i.e. the voices used in tech products like the Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant — is associated with both actual and perceived higher social class. The researchers also showed that pronunciation cues in an individual’s speech communicate their social status more accurately than the content of their speech. The fifth study examined how these speech cues influence hiring. Twenty prospective job candidates from varied current and childhood socioeconomic backgrounds were recruited from the New Haven community to interview for an entry-level lab manager position at Yale. Prior to sitting for a formal job interview, the candidates each recorded a conversation in which they were asked to briefly describe themselves. A sample of 274 individuals with hiring experience either listened to the audio or read transcripts of the recordings. The hiring managers were asked to assess the candidates’ professional qualities, starting salary, signing bonus, and perceived social class based solely on the brief pre-interview discussion without reviewing the applicants’ job interview responses or resumes.   The hiring managers who listened to the audio recordings were more likely to accurately assess socioeconomic status than those who read transcripts, according to the study. Devoid of any information about the candidates’ actual qualifications, the hiring managers judged the candidates from higher social classes as more likely to be competent for the job, and a better fit for it than the applicants from lower social classes. Moreover, they assigned the applicants from higher social classes more lucrative salaries and signing bonuses than the candidates with lower social status.

If at first you don't succeed

Researchers analyzed records of scientists who, early in their careers, applied for R01 grants from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) between 1990 and 2005. They utilized the NIH’s evaluation scores to separate individuals into two groups: (1) the “near-misses” whose scores were just below the threshold that received funding and (2) the “just-made-its” whose scores were just above that threshold. Researchers then considered how many papers each group published, on average, over the next 10 years and how many of those papers turned out to be hits, as determined by the number of citations those papers received. Analysis revealed that individuals in the near-miss group received less funding, but published just as many papers, and more hit papers, than individuals in the just-made-it group. The researchers found that individuals in the near-miss funding group were 6.1% more likely to publish a hit paper over the next 10 years compared to scientists in the just-made-it group.

How happy couples argue: Focus on solvable issues first -- ScienceDaily

When researchers observed couples discussing marital problems, all couples focused on issues with clearer solutions, such as the distribution of household labor and how to spend leisure time. "Rebalancing chores may not be easy, but it lends itself to more concrete solutions than other issues," Rauer said. "One spouse could do more of certain chores to balance the scales." The couples rarely chose to argue about issues that are more difficult to resolve. And Rauer suggests that this strategic decision may be one of the keys to their marital success. "Focusing on the perpetual, more-difficult-to-solve problems may undermine partners' confidence in the relationship," Rauer said. Instead, to the extent it is possible, focusing first on more solvable problems may be an effective way to build up both partners' sense of security in the relationship. "If couples feel that they can work together to resolve their issues, it may give them the confidence to move on to tackling the more difficult issues," Rauer said.

Delay Discounting as a Transdiagnostic Process in Psychiatric Disorders: A Meta-analysis | Psychiatry | JAMA Psychiatry | JAMA Network

In this meta-analysis of 57 effect sizes from 43 studies across 8 diagnostic categories, robust differences in delay discounting were observed between people with psychiatric disorders and controls. Most individuals with disorders (including depression, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, borderline personality disorder, bulimia nervosa, and binge-eating disorder) exhibited steeper discounting compared with controls, whereas those with anorexia nervosa exhibited shallower discounting compared with controls.

Prizes for sobriety: As Washington meth use rises, this treatment is one of few that works | The Seattle Times

Here’s how the treatment works: You come in a few times a week, complete a urine test, and if it’s negative, you draw for a prize — at a trial McDonell is running in Wallingford, there are “small” prizes like shampoo or a toothbrush, “big” prizes like a coffeemaker, or rare “jumbo” prizes like a DVD player. The longer you’re sober, the more draws you get, but if the test comes back positive, the clinician says “see you next time.”

In product design, imagining end user's feelings leads to more original outcomes -- ScienceDaily

"You always want to have new products that solve problems more efficiently, more effectively and at a lesser cost. So product designers fall into this trap of being very objective in focusing on the utility of a product. That's important, but the objectivity of the thought process only takes them so far, because they're not imagining how the product will ultimately make consumers feel." When designers start incorporating what they perceive the end user's feelings will be into product design, "what that does is enhance empathy for the consumer -- and that, in turn, produces more out-of-the-box ideas. That's our big takeaway: When you imagine consumers and focus on their feelings, that's powerful and will lead to something much more innovative than only focusing on a product's utility."

Men's teams only?

"Our results do not give leaders a license to be a jerk," Staw says, "but when you have a very important project or a merger that needs to get done over the weekend, negative emotions can be a very useful arrow to have in your quiver to drive greater performance."

What's more powerful, word-of-mouth or following someone else's lead? -- ScienceDaily

They found that word-of-mouth referrals from the community network is the largest driver among the social learning forces they studied. And while word-of -mouth was more powerful than observed adoptions, both factors are significant in influencing social learning. "While both word-of-mouth and observed adoptions are highly influential in affecting a person's social learning, our results show that each provide unique and different information that individuals use in their decision-making," said Ameri. "Ultimately, we found that a person's community network is the primary source of information driving anime watching decisions and behaviors."

Sleep is essential for business leaders seeking next successful venture -- ScienceDaily

In the second part of the study, a smaller group of participants evaluated the pitches over several weeks while charting their sleep patterns. Those participants who had at least seven hours of sleep each night consistently selected the best pitches identified by the expert panel. Those who had less sleep or restless sleep did not consistently pick the best pitches. "The evidence suggests that less sleep leads to less accurate beliefs about the commercial potential of a new venture idea," Gish says. "Since we compared individual performance over multiple days, we can say that these results are consistent even for entrepreneurs who don't sleep as much on average as the general population."

Research: Women Score Higher Than Men in Most Leadership Skills

According to an analysis of thousands of 360-degree reviews, women outscored men on 17 of the 19 capabilities that differentiate excellent leaders from average or poor ones.

Social network structure is predictive of health and wellness

Social network analysis has been used for health-related problems including mental health [4, 6], physical well-beings [1, 2], and illness [8, 27]. Most of the work has largely focused on social networks as a diffusion mechanism of health [1–5] or emotions [6–9]. This paper provides a novel perspective on the value of social network structure in not only understanding our health behavior but also in predicting the wellness states, above and beyond what the data from wearables or demographic tells us. Clearly, social networks are an important piece of the puzzle about our health and wellness. We showed that by including features derived from social networks, accuracy increases significantly and at times using only social network features adds more predictability. Specifically, we find that happiness and positive attitude have the most significant jump when using social network structure features in addition to health behavior and demographic data. This clearly demonstrates that it is the tight coupling of an ego’s social and health behavior that result in improved understanding and predictability of the ego’s wellness state.

Performance improves when the enemy of an enemy is a friend: Study of traders finds balanced professional networks lead to better high-risk decisions -- ScienceDaily

SBT consists of four primary rules for relationships among individuals: A friend of a friend is a friend A friend of an enemy is an enemy An enemy of an enemy is a friend An enemy of a friend is an enemy When all of these conditions are met, a network is said to be balanced. Through a two-year study of day traders, the researchers found that: (A) workers gravitate toward a state of balance in their relationships; and (B) performance improves when there is a high level of balance.

When Do We Fall in Neural Synchrony With Others?

Compared to dyads between real participants and confederates, real-participant pairings showed greater cooperation behavior and IBS between bilateral dorsolateral prefrontal cortex. And, IBS and cooperation increased over time in real-participant pairings, whereas they remained low and constant in dyads with the confederate. These findings indicate that IBS occurs between individuals engaging in interpersonal interaction during a collaborative task, during which both IBS and cooperatively interpersonal interaction tend to increase over time.

Finding the 'Goldilocks' level of enthusiasm for business pitches -- ScienceDaily

They found that, generally speaking, the higher the peak level of enthusiasm, the more likely the entrepreneur was to receive funding, after controlling for differences in the products and business ideas. But there was a bell curve in the results, where the likelihood of funding tended to fall as "peak joy" levels went on for too long. "Although a higher level of peak joy displayed by entrepreneurs during their pitches leads to better funding performance over time, prolonged display of peak joy seemed to undermine funding performance," Liu said. "Another possible interpretation is that investors may believe the entrepreneur is acting and the pitch is manipulative. Maybe they feel the entrepreneur is using his or her excitement to manipulate the investors' perceptions in hopes of increasing the odds of getting funding."

Opposites attract and, together, they can make surprisingly gratifying decisions: When couples make a joint decision, study finds conflicting interpersonal orientations can produce decisions that satisfy both parties -- ScienceDaily

The studies found that when paired with a selfish partner, it is better to behave altruistically rather than selfishly. Similarly, when paired with an altruistic partner, it is better to behave selfishly to achieve a desired outcome, according to the findings, reported recently in the Journal of Consumer Psychology. In both scenarios, the paired respondents were able to come to decisions that best reflected their individual preferences, or what both partners personally liked -- if they took the opposite attitude as that of their partner, said Boston College Carroll School of Management Coughlin Sesquicentennial Assistant Professor of Marketing Hristina Nikolova. "When you see that your partner is acting selfishly, it is better to let it go and act altruistically instead; let them make the decision because this will ultimately ensure a better outcome for you than if you act selfishly too," said Nikolova, a co-author of the article "Ceding and Succeeding: How the Altruistic Can Benefit from the Selfish in Joint Decisions."

How to hack your deadline: Admit it's uncertain -- ScienceDaily

"Stakeholders are always dealing with a complex set of uncertainties, but they are rarely shared with project managers. The goal is to bring the two worlds closer together and incorporate the knowledge that's uncovered into the management process," Bordley said. "I like to ask stakeholders to think of a situation that would cause a deadline to get pushed forward by a month, for example. Tell me about that situation, estimate how likely it is to happen. Focus on the extremes. That way, you end up with optimistic and pessimistic deadlines that are more than just numbers."

Auction bids decline with intensity of competition: Study reveals downside to having more bidders in an auction -- ScienceDaily

The study suggested that the more bidders there are in an auction, the lower each individual bidder perceives their probability of winning, which has demotivating effect on their desire to win the auction. "This is a counterintuitive finding because usually auctioneers would assume that the more bidders there are in an auction, the more money they will make -- the logic being that that the more bidders there are, the more likely it is that there is a bidder with a high willingness to pay for the good," said co-author Associate Professor Agnieszka Tymula from the University of Sydney's School of Economics. "However, it turns out that there is also a downside to having more bidders -- most people bid less."

How to Turn Your Mistakes into an Advantage | Yale Insights

One group was then told that when Best Scoops’ supplier announced a shift to lower-quality beans on its website, Best Scoops preventively found a new supplier. A second group was told that Best Scoops mistakenly used the lower-quality beans until realizing the error and correcting it. Those in the second group, in which Best Scoops erred, reported Best Scoops as more likely to achieve its goals. Other experiments of similar design demonstrated a greater willingness to purchase from companies that made and corrected mistakes compared to those that simply prevented mistakes. Underlying this behavior is a simple chain of assumptions. First, people believe that correcting an error requires greater change to the status quo than preventing one, and therefore greater effort. Second, people tend to associate greater effort with a greater commitment to goals, and so a higher likelihood of achieving them.

This Is How You Kill a Profession - The Chronicle of Higher Education

We discarded college faculty in the same way that we discarded medical general practitioners: through providing insane rewards to specialists and leaving most care in the hands of paraprofessionals. We discarded college faculty in the same way that we discarded cab drivers: by leveling the profession and allowing anyone to participate, as long as they had a minimum credential and didn’t need much money. We discarded college faculty in the same way that we discarded magazine and newspaper writers: by relabeling the work “content” and its workers “content providers.” We discarded college faculty in the same way that we discarded local auto mechanics: by making all of the systems and regulations so sophisticated that they now require an army of technicians and specialized equipment. We discarded college faculty in the same way that we discarded bookkeepers: by finally letting women do it after decades of declaring that impossible, and then immediately reducing the status of the work once it became evident that women could, in fact, do it well.

Why Are Associate Professors Some of the Unhappiest People in Academe? - The Chronicle of Higher Education

"A lot of people who get doctorates are idealistic, they want to change the world or study something where they think they can make a true difference," says Ms. Trower. "Most of us teach at places, though, where students are after a credential, and where your colleagues—who you thought would be really smart—are people you don't even like all that much. Plus, you feel underappreciated. The president of the college doesn't even know your name."

Good Vibes Are Contagious | Outside Online

even below-the-surface emotions, such as motivation, are contagious. If someone is working in the same room with people who are internally driven, their attitude also improves. If, however, someone is working in the same room with those who aren’t too excited about their work, then their motivation decreases. A 2017 study out of Northwestern University found that sitting within 25 feet of a high performer at work improved an employee’s performance by 15 percent. But sitting within 25 feet of a low performer hurt their performance by 30 percent. That’s an enormous effect!

Thanking and apologizing: Talk that isn't cheap -- ScienceDaily

The researchers proposed that, for the communicator, all four types of communications involve a trade-off between projecting competence and projecting warmth. Thanking and apologizing make the speaker appear caring or generous, but usually at the cost of seeming incompetent or weak. The opposite is true of bragging and blaming, which can bolster the speaker's perceived competence and status, but at the cost of seeming selfish or inconsiderate. The recipient of the communication experiences a different impact on their image: Thanking and apologizing elevate both perceived competence and warmth for the recipient, while bragging and blaming decrease both.

The MBA Myth and the Cult of the CEO | Institutional Investor

We found no statistically significant alphas — despite testing every possible school with a reasonable sample size. MBA programs simply do not produce CEOs who are better at running companies, if performance is measured by stock price return.

People who cunningly use cooperation and egoism are 'unbeatable' -- ScienceDaily

However, if one of the players was additionally enticed with a bonus, this player would turn into an extortioner in many cases. Despite the fact that the other player would keep trying to discipline them by refusing cooperation, the extortioner would resist and cooperate even less rather than more frequently over the course of the experiment. Extortioners were also shown to be most successful in the long-term, even in the experiment in which the potential bonus player was not predetermined.