doitinvest.com HBR press books reviews

„HBR Emotional Intelligence Series – Influence + Persuasion“ – a HBR Press Book Review

Influence + Persuasion book cover

We all wish to expand our influence and convince other easier. However, few of us are really good at the game. „Influence + Persuasion“ synthesizes some of the best thinking on the topic. From Roberto Cialdini to Nancy Duarte, the authors selected by HBR Press go beyond their original thinking.   The articles from „Influence + Persuasion“  are actually upgraded and synthetic pieces of thinking published originally on hbr.org. 

Whilst the history gives us plenty of examples of influential persons, in most cases we were not direct witnesses of their skills. So basically we are more or less constant beginners in the field of influence. This creates a sort of a a vicious circle: whilst to get better at influencing one must practice it, in reality one has limited chances of doing so. Even the opportunities come relatively rarely – and as a consequence one must use them in a thrifty manner, keeping in mind the maximum effectiveness principle.

One of the mantras in the book is „connect, compare and contrast“. Persuasion is a direct contact sport and the one attempting it must appeal directly to the potential followers. Read More »„HBR Emotional Intelligence Series – Influence + Persuasion“ – a HBR Press Book Review

“Think for Yourself – Restoring Common Sense in the Age of Experts and Artificial Intelligence“ by Vikram Manshamarani – A HBR Press Book Review

Think for yourself, use properly the props of experts and artificial intelligence! But wait a minute, isn’t an expert AI supposed to help us take better decisions? As another famous HBR Press title states, “Prediction Machines” should augment our processes and help us get better products.
Well, not so quickly. In his new book, Vikram Mansharamani takes a closer look at how we abandon ourselves to the AI systems. And for good reasons – both the above mentioned titles issue a stark warning with regards to the current state of machine learning. We are in an age of great machine learning developments. And the name of this age is still infancy, therefore users beware – things have a long way to go before they get better.
Here both “Prediction Machines” and “Think for Yourself” converge on the antidote to th orchestrated jumping in. Users who led augment the AI with their own experience – after all, the human brain is likely the most advanced processing mainframe on Earth. It does not matter really how many lines of code or how many programmers worked on it – take a break, take a deep breath and think: “What is this AI product output trying to sell me?”.
As usually in our HBR books reviews on doitinvest.com, I would like to expand on a chapter I liked very much. For me, this was “Unintended blowback” – with some interesting medical cases and their impact on our lives. (This links well with the personal experiences of most friends and acquaintances). Medical science is well advanced on its way, but still has miles to go. For example rare diseases – there are too few doctors specialized in them and too few research was spent on it. As a consequence, most diagnostics for rare diseases are delivered on a qualifying manner – i.e. with a disclaimer at the end. The issues start app waring when doctors over or under interpret the diagnostics of such a rare disease. It is a bit like over or under-reacting to a serious circumstance. Read More »“Think for Yourself – Restoring Common Sense in the Age of Experts and Artificial Intelligence“ by Vikram Manshamarani – A HBR Press Book Review