Why is advice largely useless?

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"Follow the Oldtimers Advice." - NAR...

“Follow the Oldtimers Advice.” – NARA – 514272 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

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Illustration of advice (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

English: Right hand thumb rule

English: Right hand thumb rule (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

English: Good advice! Or you'll find out just ...

English: Good advice! Or you’ll find out just how slow those lions really are! (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Good Advice

Good Advice (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

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Caricature condemning Buller: Judge Thumb – Patent Sticks for Family Correction – Warranted Lawful! (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Why is advice largely useless?

 

If I followed all the advice I’ve been given and it worked as intended, I would be fantastically productive, perfectly healthy, filthy rich, and getting laid all the time. None of those descriptions seem particularly apt. (I exaggerate for effect. In reality I have read advice on all sorts of things. Most topics were more mundane than those I listed, for example advice on relieving stress or staying organized.) If people are constantly inundated with advice, why do they, by and large, fail to achieve the things the advice was meant to help with?

Confirmation bias is my candidate for the top reason. People who succeed (and are most likely to offer “advice”) make up idiotic reasons for why they succeeded, mostly discounting the role of luck, and writing self-serving stories and “prescriptions” that are less about helping others and more about self-aggrandization.

More specifically, this comes down to an almost incredible capacity to ignore necessary/sufficient conditions for a particular piece of advice to work.

For me, a piece of advice that does not have an if… then… structure is completely useless, because my basic bullshit detector filter is a “there’s no free lunch” rule of thumb.

Almost nobody prefaces advice with the condition, “this will work for you if _________ and will not work if ____________”

The presence of that structure, on the other hand, makes me immediately take the person seriously, because they’ve taken the trouble to convert a single example (i.e. an existence proof) into a more general truth statement that is carefully circumscribed.

Also a lot of advice that apparently works does not work because of the content of the advice, but the sheer fact of somebody offering an understanding and sympathetic reaction to another person’s situation. That alone can be enough sometimes, whether or not the advice is valid. It’s sort of a placebo effect. It’s what people call “motivational speaking” as opposed to real advice.

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Compelation by Stephen Darori and Stephen Drus

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Stephen Darori is the managing Partner of 3XC Global Partners. He is the Lead  Principal of Darori Capital Luxembourg. Stephen has been the Chairman of the Darori Foundation since 1982.

 

The Darori Foundation is the largest  donor of books to Israeli ( and also South African) University, College and Muncipal libraries and has consistently been so since 1969. The Darori Foundation , given the decreasing demand for hard copy books in the 21st Century Digital age , now leads and participates in Projects to put Internet Devices in Every Child in Israel. In 2013 , $5 million was earmarked to upgrade the notebooks used in schools in the Southern Periphery  Towns within 20 kms of Gaza . IBM (Corp)  quietly committed them selves to  matching finance ( in kind) . The new IBM notebooks are purchased at almost cost to IBM ( substantially discounted ) . Lets not start a turf war in Zion between IBM Israel ( franchised sales rep and IBM Corp )  . Keep the later sentence as confidentiality as possible. Over and above Notebooks and other Internet Devices , free ISP services  are provided and have been upgraded to a 100 Mega Down-link.

 

Stephen is also the founder of the Start Up Nation Critical Canvas. This is a  Socio Economical Political Lobby to change the employment Laws in Israel and open up the Job Market  to High Tech People who are not Jewish or Israeli. the pitch is simple . Israeli Academia can now longer keep pace with the Demand of the Start Up Nation’s White Silicon City ‘s Silicon Boulevard, the Golden Silicon City and the Silicon Wadi’s demand for High Tech Headcount. This is an extremely difficult Pitch to deliver as all decision makers wear two or more different Caps . The pitch says let them work in Zion, pay taxes , enjoy all the benefits of an Israeli Tax Payer but never Israeli Citizenship unless they marry an Israeli. The Tax System for individuals in Israel is structures around an Israeli ID Number. No ID number , no opportunity to work in Israel . Medical associations have a boutique solution for non-Israelis living in Zion who require medical treatment

Personal branding

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Personal branding is the practice of people marketing themselves and their careers as brands.[1] While previous self-helpmanagement techniques were about self-improvement, the personal-branding concept suggests instead that success comes from self-packaging.[1] Personal branding also involves creating an asset by defining an individual’s bodyclothingphysical appearance,digital and online presence and areas of knowledge in a way leading to a uniquely distinguishable, and ideally memorable, impression.[citation needed] The term is thought to have been first used and discussed in a 1997 article by Tom Peters.[2]

Personal Branding is esentially; the ongoing process of establishing a prescribed image or impression in the mind of others about an individual, group or organization.[3] Personal branding can often involves the application of one’s name to various products. For example, the celebrity real-estate mogul Donald Trump uses his last name extensively on his buildings and on the products he endorses (e.g. Trump Steaks).

History[edit]

Personal branding, self-positioning and all individual branding by whatever name, was first introduced in 1937 in the book Think and Grow Rich[citation needed] by Napoleon Hill. The idea surfaced later in the 1981 book Positioning: The Battle for Your Mind, by Al Riesand Jack Trout.[4] More specifically in “Chapter 23. Positioning Yourself and Your Career – You can benefit by using positioning strategy to advance your own career. Key principle: Don’t try to do everything yourself. Find a horse to ride”.

It was later popularized by Tom Peters.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. Jump up to:a b Lair, Daniel J.; Sullivan, Katie; Cheney, George (2005). “Marketization and the Recasting of the Professional Self”Management Communication Quarterly 18 (3): 307–343. doi:10.1177/0893318904270744.
  2. Jump up^ Asacker, Tom (10 March 2004). “The Seven Wonders of Branding”Forbes.com. Retrieved June 14, 2013.
  3. Jump up^ Creating Your Personal Brand – Los Ellis 2009
  4. Jump up^ Ries, Al; Trout, Jack (1981). Positioning: The Battle for your Mind. McGraw-Hill. ISBN 978-0-07-135916-0.