Think Significantly

Think Significantly

Intellectual conversations about little discussed phenomena that affect us in our everyday lives. read less
EducationEducation

Episodes

217 - The F Word
Jul 19 2022
217 - The F Word
There are entire professions dedicated to the concept of giving feedback.  From editors to movie critics to corporate consultants to life coaches, feedback is widely recognized as critical to improvement in all arenas.  While we love getting the kudos that come with a job well done, we don’t always have the same appreciation for the constructive criticism that allows us to reach new heights of performance.  Part of the reason we balk at feedback might lie in the frequency of that feedback and the quality of it.  In today’s discussion, Melissa and Pete shed light on what makes feedback useful, the best ways to deliver it, and how much is the right amount. Conversation Kindling: Feedback is one of the hottest topics in business today. Managers are encouraged to adopt a practice of radical candor with their employees, and employees are expected to welcome such constructive criticism with open arms. However, “The Feedback Fallacy,” an article in the March-April 2019 edition of the Harvard Business Review, maintains that telling employees what we think of their performance doesn’t help them thrive and relays how we think they should improve hinders their learning. Research demonstrates that the most effective feedback is delivered when people who know us and care for us tell us what they experience and feel, specifically when they see something within us that works. Visit our linktree to follow us on social media and find us on your preferred podcast delivery platform:  https://linktr.ee/thinksigpod --- Send in a voice message: https://podcasters.spotify.com/pod/show/thinksigpod/message
216 - Credential Creep
Jul 12 2022
216 - Credential Creep
While the Great Resignation has caused many positions to go unfilled in the job market, there is another force at work that contributes to staffing woes–credential creep. Ironically, the act of requiring unnecessary degrees or certifications–usually with no additional bump in salary–in the hopes of attracting more qualified employees often produces the opposite result. Those additional screening metrics prevent job seekers from being able to apply to job announcements and leave companies with vacant positions. In this episode, Melissa and Pete discuss why a college degree isn’t necessarily the answer to attracting and retaining a qualified workforce and offer up what might be more important than a slew of certifications on our resume. Conversation Kindling: In February 2021, Credential Engine released two reports that offer an unprecedented understanding of the credential landscape. The first report estimates that there are 967,734 unique credentials in the U.S. across 16 categories—including both traditional degrees, certificates, certifications, licenses, and apprenticeships as well as non-traditional offerings such as badges.  This finding illustrates the credential landscape is vast—perhaps much larger than many imagined. The second report estimates that the total yearly expenditures by educational institutions, employers, federal grant programs, states, and the military is upwards of $1.921 trillion. This revelation signals the need to create better processes for accountability and decision-making. Employers and employees shouldn’t have to guess which skills and credentials meet their needs—particularly with the proliferation of new options in this new normal. View the reports HERE Visit our linktree to follow us on social media and find us on your preferred podcast delivery platform:  https://linktr.ee/thinksigpod --- Send in a voice message: https://podcasters.spotify.com/pod/show/thinksigpod/message
215 - Mission: Imposter
Jul 5 2022
215 - Mission: Imposter
Sometimes we find ourselves in situations where we feel like we are out of our depth.  Whether it’s being placed as a lead for a big project at work or coaching your child’s soccer team, feeling like we lack the competence to meet the expectations of those around us can lead us to sometimes feel like frauds.  That feeling is more commonly known as Imposter Phenomenon. In this episode, Melissa and Pete will dissect and discuss these feelings that an estimated 70% of people will experience at least once in their life. Conversation Kindling: In this Ted Talk, Mike Cannon-Brookes, co-founder and co-CEO of Atlassian, a collaboration software company that has been used by upwards of 70,000 organizations, reveals how he constantly feels like an imposter, but has learned to harness those feelings for his benefit. While successful people are often susceptible to imposter phenomenon, they also tend to question their ideas and their knowledge regularly and aren’t afraid to seek advice and use that input to hone their ideas. Moreover, Mike talks about how imposter phenomenon can enhance our personal relationships as well. As he explains, an attribute of the most successful personal relationships is when both partners feel like their partner is out of their league. Individuals can leverage imposter phenomenon to stretch themselves to be the best partner and achieve a very successful personal relationship. Visit our linktree to follow us on social media and find us on your preferred podcast delivery platform:  https://linktr.ee/thinksigpod --- Send in a voice message: https://podcasters.spotify.com/pod/show/thinksigpod/message
211 - Happiest Places on Earth
May 10 2022
211 - Happiest Places on Earth
As we continue our month of exploring happiness, we turn our attention to the effect that our surroundings have on us. Our happiness can be affected by differences in temperature, noise levels, and how crowded a space is. But so much more goes into how a place affects us than just physical properties. The culture associated with each geographic location has an impact on how happy an individual feels there. What makes someone happy in China, can make someone unhappy in Russia.  In this episode, we boil down various inputs and try to reach some common conclusions on how our happiness is affected by where we’re standing.  Conversation Kindling: Visual Capitalist shared a map using data from the World Happiness Report that we discuss in this episode to chart the average happiness scores of 146 countries from 2019 to 2021. These ratings and rankings take into account the survey data from thousands of respondents from each country, who were asked to rate their subjective well-being, as well as the tangible and intangible factors that could contribute to happiness, such as life expectancy, perceptions of corruption, freedom to make life choices, and even generosity.  You can follow this LINK to see which countries were the happiest, and unhappiest, in the world. Visit our linktree to follow us on social media and find us on your preferred podcast delivery platform:  https://linktr.ee/thinksigpod --- Send in a voice message: https://podcasters.spotify.com/pod/show/thinksigpod/message
210 - So Happy Together
May 3 2022
210 - So Happy Together
The theme for this month is Happiness, and in this first episode, we’re exploring what impact the people around us have on our happiness.  From friends to family to coworkers, nearly everyone we interact with has the potential to have an impact on our mood, for better or worse.  In fact, we only have to believe that we are sharing an experience with a friend to get a boost in our enjoyment of it.  While there are certainly some unconscious systems in play, we can take control of our happiness by being intentional about who we spend a majority of our time with, regardless of the types of activities we are engaging in. Conversation Kindling: In 2006, on the way home from work, Gretchen Rubin, an attorney and law clerk for Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor, experienced an epiphany when she realized that her vaguely stated every day goals and her failure to achieve them made her feel like she was wasting her life away. As Rubin explains, she realized two things: "I wasn't as happy as I could be, and my life wasn't going to change unless I made it change.” It was in that moment of desperation that The Happiness Project was born.  Rubin quit her job and started what began as a yearlong experiment to pursue happiness, based on the advice of a host of notables, past and present, from Aristotle to Tolstoy to Mark Twain. It became Rubin's mission to test as many of these ideas as possible within one year. During those twelve months, she managed to sort through what worked and what didn't, which has made her something of a lay expert on the subject.  In this video interview with CBS This Morning, Rubin expounds on ways that we can each make room for happiness in our lives. Visit our linktree to follow us on social media and find us on your preferred podcast delivery platform:  https://linktr.ee/thinksigpod --- Send in a voice message: https://podcasters.spotify.com/pod/show/thinksigpod/message
207 - I'll Take Geography for $500, Alex
Mar 15 2022
207 - I'll Take Geography for $500, Alex
When someone brings up their latest vacation destination, are you able to locate where they went on a map? The ability to discern geographic relativity to any given position is a requisite skill for those who dabble in politics, commerce, transportation, urban planning, and a number of other disciplines.  Despite the growing importance of understanding the complex network of interaction between people and countries, Americans are woefully weak on geography -  not only internationally, but domestically.  As we move ever closer to being one world community, it is increasingly important that we become geo-literate, that is, able to use geographic understanding and geographic reasoning to make far-reaching decisions. In today’s conversation, we will discuss why we aren’t as “map proficient” as we should be–and how the bias inherent in our maps is a contributing factor! In our discussion, we brought up a study by Movoto that demonstrated our struggle with geography. This video shows what the researchers were able to see in real-time during the experiment.  We think it is immensely interesting, and hope you think so, too! https://youtu.be/YI-ouKKI5GI Conversation Kindling: Super double bonus!!!  In this episode, we talk about how the Mercator map causes people to have false notions of the size and location of many geographic features.  Specifically, we call out the size disparity between the actual size of Greenland and Russia and how they are portrayed on the world’s most popular map.  To really drive that point home, we’ve got another resource to share with you all, and it comes to us from the good people at the Nature Index who shared this digital representation that shows the affected landmasses oscillating between their actual size and the size they appear on the map.  If you were having trouble picturing how drastic the differences are, this will give you a new appreciation for how far off our perception can be! Visit our linktree to follow us on social media and find us on your preferred podcast delivery platform:  https://linktr.ee/thinksigpod --- Send in a voice message: https://podcasters.spotify.com/pod/show/thinksigpod/message
206 - Let's Get Critical, Critical
Mar 8 2022
206 - Let's Get Critical, Critical
Surveys reveal that a host of employers today do not believe that they are attracting a workforce that is able to think critically. Despite there being a direct correlation between employees who are able to think critically and profit margins, critical thinking seems to be a skill that isn’t encouraged within our school systems or our social circles. Why is this? In this episode, we highlight the different phases and many benefits of critical thinking and explore how “unlearning” can be a game-changer. Conversation kindling: Did you know that when asked simple questions about global trends, such as how many people live in poverty or why the world’s population is increasing, we tend to get the answers wrong? In fact, our rate of being wrong is so high that a chimpanzee choosing answers at random will correctly outguess journalists, Nobel laureates, and investment bankers. As it turns out, the world, with all of its imperfections, is in a much better state than we might think. Why is this important? Because according to Hans Rosling, a Swedish physician and statistician, when we worry about everything all the time instead of embracing a worldview based on facts, we can lose our ability to focus on the things that threaten us most. Click HERE to access the quiz from the Factfulness quiz to find out if you can outperform that chimpanzee, and start on the stress-reducing path to only carrying opinions for which you have strong supporting facts. Visit our linktree to follow us on social media and find us on your preferred podcast delivery platform:  https://linktr.ee/thinksigpod --- Send in a voice message: https://podcasters.spotify.com/pod/show/thinksigpod/message
205 - Even Michael Phelps Takes Swim Lessons
Mar 1 2022
205 - Even Michael Phelps Takes Swim Lessons
We’re kicking off our new theme of Question Everything this month with an exploration of self! Most people love the feeling of being celebrated. Getting recognized for something we’ve accomplished or for doing something better than everyone else gives us a boost to our self-image and floods us with positive feelings. Not being good at something, on the other hand, is generally not a positive experience. We shy away from things we haven’t mastered for fear of looking foolish or being judged for a lack of ability. However, there is something to be said for–and gained by–instituting a mindset of continuous improvement in our lives. Even if our goal isn’t mastering a task, committing to a mentality where continuous improvement is a mainstay can have significant positive effects on one’s life. Conversation Kindling: Visual Capitalist has a fascinating graphic that shows the daily routines of famous creative people that you can see HERE. The visual breaks down the individual’s day by sleep, exercise, food/leisure, work, and creative pursuits. It even has an interactive component which is fun to play with. The reason that we’re sharing it on the heels of our “Question Everything” month is because your schedule could be another place for you to reevaluate your life. All of these individuals achieved notoriety in their respective fields, yet their schedules were vastly different. When are you most creative? Does it coincide with when you engage in your most creative endeavors? Are you a night owl who somehow wound up working at a job with a 6 AM start?  What tweaks could you make to your day that would be more in alignment with your natural “ebb and flow?” Visit our linktree to follow us on social media and find us on your preferred podcast delivery platform:  https://linktr.ee/thinksigpod --- Send in a voice message: https://podcasters.spotify.com/pod/show/thinksigpod/message
202 - Five Guys
Jan 11 2022
202 - Five Guys
There is an old adage: "Show me your friends, and I'll show you your future."  It’s widely accepted that we are influenced by the company we keep, but the extent to which that is true, and the effect it has on us, might not be clear.  Philosophers and scientists alike have sought to explain the relationship between our friends and our behaviors, beliefs, and outcomes.  Is there science to back up these folk knowledge truisms?  How much can we change our lives by being deliberate about choosing who to spend time with?  Just how many people are influencing us on a daily basis?  In today’s episode, Mellisa and Pete traverse the centuries to find anecdotes about the effects our compadres have on our behavior, our morals, our health, and even our happiness! Conversation Kindling: As we noted in our discussion, research demonstrates that there is a relationship between our friends and our behaviors, beliefs, and outcomes. This interactive chart from Our World in Data illustrates who Americans spend the most daily minutes with at different ages of their life. What we found fascinating about this chart is that people–across all age brackets–are spending most of their time alone, and this is based on data collected between 2009 and 2019, which was pre-pandemic! How does this impact the idea that we are the average of the five people that we spend most of our time with? And, what effect does this alone time have on our health if human connection is so important to our wellbeing? Visual Capitalist - Who Americans Spend the Most Time With by Age Visit our linktree to follow us on social media and find us on your preferred podcast delivery platform:  https://linktr.ee/thinksigpod --- Send in a voice message: https://podcasters.spotify.com/pod/show/thinksigpod/message