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I can hardly believe it’s Friday again! Without further delay, here are some of the week’s best articles:

  1. Nicole Torres has a great article up on HBR wherein she looks at research examining the causal factors behind generosity (and its prevalence). The study showed that doing something that benefits yourself over others (which people are five times as likely to do when dealing with a total stranger) activates the reward center of the brain, while doing something more selfless activates the empathy section of the brain. What I found especially interesting, however, was that in some cases both areas of the brain lit up at once. This suggested that there was some sort of loop/calculation going on in the brain wherein subjects were weighing the value of taking the selfish action against the value of taking the more generous one. The researchers ultimately determined that generosity being a product of nature versus nurture was a complex topic, but hypothesized that one can make themselves more prone to be giving by stopping to consider others feelings before acting (lighting up the empathy center of the brain). Not necessarily rocket science, I know, but a powerful look into the science behind selflessness. Check out the full article here, and remember to treat people well this weekend (and, well, always).

 

  1. Lisa Evans has an interesting piece up on Fast Company that examines the parallels between good parenting and good management. I don’t have children, but nevertheless found the article entertaining and intuitive. The points about knowing when to negotiate, set boundaries, offer incentives, and focus on positive feedback are all straight out of management 101 and – apparently – parenting 101 as well. Check out Lisa’s piece here, and if you like it then consider reading the book that inspired the article (By Ian Durston, interviewed in the article) here.

 

  1. Pharmaceuticals HR Pro Ben Olds has a solid post up on Fistful of Talent about strategy. He lays out the case for what being a strategic thinker is and isn’t, then gives some really grounded examples outlining how you can become better at it. If you’ve ever struggled with what it means to “think strategically” then this is the article for you. I loved it because it caused me to step back and think about some areas in my own life (personally and professionally) that I’m a little too tactical. Check the piece out here and let me know if you derived the same value in the comments section below.

Happy Friday,

Rory

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