To Stay Relevant, Your Company and Employees Must Keep Learning

Harvard Business Review

As AT&T CEO and Chair Randall Stephenson, recently told the New York Times, “There is a need to retool yourself, and you should not expect to stop… People who do not spend five to 10 hours a week in online learning will obsolete themselves with the technology.”

Don't Like the Message? Maybe It's the Messenger

Harvard Business Review

But the same tendencies can be seen in pretty much any case where there are conflicting opinions — which ought to make them of interest to anybody in a management or other decision-making role. It was inspired by comments from author Neal Stephenson, who espoused the latter view in a Q&A at MIT. That's probably because, if there is one person in the world whom Wired.com readers consider a "knowledgeable member of their cultural community," it is Neal Stephenson.

Why Business Leaders Need to Read More Science Fiction

Harvard Business Review

If 19th-century urban planners had had access to big data, machine learning techniques, and modern management theory, these tools would not have helped them. Rising sea levels flood Manhattan in Kim Stanley Robinson’s New York 2140 , prompting hedge fund managers and real estate investors to create a new intertidal market index. So consider leaving the latest white papers, industry rundowns, and management hot takes at the office.

When Will this Low-Innovation Internet Era End?

Harvard Business Review

These are all pretty common assertions in modern business/tech journalism and management literature. Then there's another view, which I heard from author Neal Stephenson in an MIT lecture hall last week. Stephenson was clearly trying to be provocative. Stephenson, who has "devoted a shocking amount of time" lately to learning about alternative space-launch technologies, said at MIT that "the reason none of them happen turns out to be insurance.".

Talking to Yourself (Out Loud) Can Help You Learn

Harvard Business Review

AT&T CEO Randall Stephenson says technology workers need to learn online for at least five hours per week to fend off obsolescence. Managing yourself Creativity Digital ArticleWhen University of Illinois psychologist Brian Ross enrolled in a computer science course, it had been a long time since he’d even taken a class. With his beard and balding dome, he stood out. A decade older than his classmates, Ross was, to all the other students, that guy. He was nervous.

Can Being Overconfident Make You a Better Leader?

Harvard Business Review

Randall Stephenson, then CEO of AT&T, famously said , “I told people you weren’t betting on a device. And for good reason — research has shown that when overconfidence permeates the upper levels of management, companies may fail to choose the best investment policies or engage in reckless and damaging acquisitions. Our first challenge was to answer the question: How do we separate the merely confident managers from the overconfident variety?

Welcome to HBR's Customer Intelligence Insight Center

Harvard Business Review

As early as 1994 Neal Stephenson was envisioning the era of Big Data, and how it might change the work of a market researcher. But when the two of us began compiling HBR's Insight Center on Customer Intelligence , and thought about what managers find scary about customer intelligence, we came up with a much broader range of concerns. Fiction writers who specialize in creating dystopian near-futures seem to put a lot of stock in the potential of customer intelligence.

How to Conduct an Effective Job Interview

Harvard Business Review

Career websites like Glassdoor have “taken the mystique and mystery” out of interviews, says John Sullivan, an HR expert, professor of management at San Francisco State University, and author of 1000 Ways to Recruit Top Talent. Chris Smith and Chris Stephenson.

The 3 Things CEOs Worry About the Most

Harvard Business Review

Talent Management. Randall Stephenson of AT&T explained, “We had 270,000 people we employed around the globe. CEOs have a lot to worry about, but what are their greatest concerns? What keeps them awake at night?