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  • Writer's pictureBen Kettle

Good To Know: June 2021 🧑‍💻

Updated: Jan 3, 2022

A monthly round-up of things happening in hiring, D&I, and humanity.

Hey Everyone,

This week is a bit of a change-up. Instead of my own post, I’ll be highlighting the work of others, getting a bit weird, and sharing some behind-the-scenes info about Lying to Ourselves. I’m calling it The Monthly Round-Up and I hope you enjoy it (and if you don’t, send me a note and let me know).

OK, let’s get started….


Lying to Ourselves Monthly Round-Up: June 2021

Things You Should Read

There is a surprising amount of great (or at least thought-provoking) content on the internet that discusses hiring, bias, equality, and some of the other topics that I cover. Here’s some of the best:

Garret Bucks on Anti-Racism

A big reason for starting what would become Lying to Ourselves was the realization that talent is everywhere but opportunity is not. There are many uncomfortable answers to the question “Why isn’t opportunity everywhere?” but one of them is “America’s long history of systemic racial oppression.” Candidly, my role and relationship with that truth is something that I think about daily. Garret Bucks, who writes The White Pages and founded The Barnraisers Project (anti-racism training for white people), has been a huge influence on how I think about my responsibility in bringing about racial justice. A good place to start is this post.

Brooke Baldwin on Rethinking Resumes

It’s no surprise that those marginalized by the status quo quickly figure out alternatives. Brooke Baldwin’s piece in Forbes about female leaders rethinking the resume is a great example of smart leaders determining new ways to evaluate talent. If you’ve read my posts on experience then you already know that the leaders profiled will win.¹

Scott Highhouse and Our Stubborn Reliance on Intuition

As a group, you all really love academic research (more on that later). So here’s one of my favorites, “Stubborn Reliance on Intuition and Subjectivity in Employee Selection.” It’s from Scott Highhouse, a Bowling Green State University professor in industrial-organizational psychology. Read the first page, you can practically hear his exasperation. Key quote:

Arguably, the greatest failure of I–O psychology has been the inability to convince employers to use them [hiring decision aids].

Alex Hughes on Interviewing Above Your Weight Class

My friend Alex Hughes wrote about “The Power of Interviewing Above Your Weight Class” for Mind the Product. Alex wouldn’t admit it, but since his experience at Lyft his career has taken off. Read the piece and you will understand why.


Other Thoughts

Zero-Knowledge Proofs and Hiring

I’ve been reading about Zero-Knowledge Proofs. The implications for work and how we hire could be huge. What if you could prove you had a skill, get a job, and earn a paycheck without anyone knowing who you actually were? What if you invented AI that could pass a ZKP by demonstrating skill proficiency and pass the Turing test? You’d be a billionaire.

Cycling’s Inclusion Progress

One of my favorite sports, cycling, has a serious diversity problem. Thankfully it made some big jumps forward in June. L39ION, the only black-owned cycling team, dominated the crits at Tulsa Tough. Zwift, a virtual world for bike riding and racing, stepped up to sponsor the woman’s Tour De France for four years. And Ian Boswell won Unbound Gravel, arguably the biggest bike race in the US, while wearing a wristband supporting the transgender community.


Getting Meta - Some News About LTO

People love hearing about themselves and their communities. So I thought I’d pull back the curtain a bit on Lying to Ourselves and what I’m hearing from you.

  • Footnotes and academic papers are a hit! A surprising number of you have reached out to tell me how much you love both.

  • Every post (so far) has had a greater than 50% open rate. This is big for me. It demonstrates that you continue to find what I say valuable. My job is to continue that trend.

  • You all are a consistent bunch. Every post has 3 likes and 20% of readers click a link. The most popular link so far? William Callaway’s LinkedIn profile.

  • The last post “Turning Trash Into Treasure” got, by far, my biggest response. I appreciate all the feedback and support!

  • Thank you to Sharon Chou, who is much better at memes than I am.

  • I’m up to 120 subscribers. My original goal a month in was half that. Thank you all for subscribing and sharing! If you’re a nonsubscriber, please consider signing up. You can do so below.

As always, thanks for reading, subscribing, and commenting. We’ll be back next week to discuss why references aren’t a great predictor of candidate performance and how we can make those better.

Have a great week everyone!


1 Thank you Tait Flint for passing this along!

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