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No one knows how to hire, plus brand design and African tech

Editor’s Note: No one knows how to hire

Hiring is the lifeblood of the world. Few people do truly singular work; instead, nearly every facet of our civilization is built by groups of humans (and increasingly machines) working in tandem.

Image by PeopleImages via Getty Images

That presents quite the puzzle though: if teamwork is so critical to the functioning of, well, everything, why are we so god awfully bad at building teams?

Minus a couple of high functioning teams of course, the evidence for team rot is all around us. Startups go bust when teams of two (i.e. founders) can’t make simple decisions about the future of their business. Large companies exsanguinate cash while their teams spend eons debating the minutia of a pixel in the checkout flow. At even larger scale, massive infrastructure projects like California’s HSR fail because the right people weren’t planning and building it (plus ten other issues of course).

How do we get this so wrong, so consistently?

The first reason, and the one most challenging to overcome, is that human endeavors are fundamentally built upon aspirations. A startup is a dream, no different than improving Excel’s formula editor or adding traffic signals to an intersection. Action cannot happen without aspiration, and so we tend to be far more optimistic with all facets of a plan before execution.

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Original Content podcast: On ‘Guava Island,’ Donald Glover mixes music and politics



It was hard to know what to expect from “Guava Island.”

Last year, Donald Glover and Rihanna filmed the mysterious project with director Hiro Murai (who’s also directed multiple episodes of “Atlanta” and the music video for “This is America”, then they said almost nothing about it until debuting the film at Coachella and releasing it on Amazon.

“Guava Island” turns out to be a 54-minute, fable-like story of a musician named Deni (Glover) and his girlfriend Kofi (Rihanna) on a fictional Caribbean island. Deni plans to throw a music festival for the community, but the island boss Red Cargo wants to stop him — if his employees stay out late to party, they might not show up for work the next day.

On this week’s episode of the Original Content podcast, we’re joined by Jon Shieber to discuss our reactions to the film.

It’s certainly filled with beautiful footage of Cuba, as well as wonderful musical moments — like a restaging of “This is America” that makes its anti-capitalist themes even more obvious. But the story as a whole feels underdeveloped, and it’s a bit mystifying that someone would cast Rihanna in musical, then fail to give her a single moment to sing.

We also discuss an obscure little show called “Game of Thrones,” which returned for its final season last week. We have thoughts on the season premiere, and on what’s coming for the next five episodes.

You can listen in the player below, subscribe using Apple Podcasts or find us in your podcast player of choice. If you like the show, please let us know by leaving a review on Apple. You can also send us feedback directly. (Or suggest shows and movies for us to review!)



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SoftBank and Toyota want driverless cars to change the world

Softbank and Toyota are partnering on an effort to use autonomous vehicles and other technologies to change the world of transportation.

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7 things to know before the bell

Read full story for latest details.

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Indiana anti-gay law halts Angie’s List expansion

CEO Bill Oesterle says Indiana campus expansion on hold after Governor Mike Pence passed a law giving businesses the right to refuse service to LGBT people.

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Mercedes-Benz is making a pickup truck

The German luxury automakers is planning a mid-sized truck for markets outside the U.S.

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The Sharing Economy Is On The Brink Of Disrupting Business Travel

biztraveler The foundations of the business travel ecosystem are under more strain than ever before. U.S. companies are projected to spend $310 million on business travel in 2015 (up 6.2% from last year), but how they spend that money has become a source of tension and uncertainty. Sharing economy startups like Airbnb and Uber are challenging traditional travel vendors – and in the process… Read More


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Gillmor Gang: Happy Medium

Gillmor Gang Artcard The Gillmor Gang — Steven Levy, Erick Schonfeld, John Taschek, Keith Teare, and Steve Gillmor. Steve Jobs lives on in a new light, Periscope and Meerkat duel for attention, and Marc Benioff v. the state of Indiana. Plus, the latest G3 (below) with Halley, Mary, Francine, and Tina. @stevegillmor, @stevenlevy, @erickschonfeld, @kteare, @jtaschek Produced & directed by Tina Chase… Read More

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Don’t Let The Germanwings Crash Stigmatize Mental Illness

We have a mental health crisis on our hands. We can’t allow tragedies such as the the Germanwings crash to stigmatize it even further.



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Making a Tough Decision? Ask These Five Questions First.

When you’re making a tough decision it’s easy to let the wind take you for a ride. Try this instead.



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