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The Filament Blog


We all suffer from a profound case of “Idea Surplus Disorder” at Filament — and we think that’s a good thing. Here are some of those ideas we’d like to share with you.



Monday Morning Meeting #24

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Good morning, everyone!  We're going to have a shorter meeting today because of our big announcement tomorrow (shhhhh, don't tell anyone!).

We've always believed that the most expensive part of any meeting is the time and attention of the attendees.  Are you spending them well?  This meeting calculator can help you find out.

This one deserves a longer post, but until then check out why laptops shouldn't be part of your next meeting. The surprising finding (it feels obvious that laptops can impact their user's attention) is that laptops impact the attention of others in the room as well:

The strongest argument against allowing that choice is that one student’s use of a laptop harms the learning of students around them. In a series of lab experiments, researchers at York University and McMaster University in Canada tested the effect of laptops on students who weren’t using them. Some students were told to perform small tasks on their laptops unrelated to the lecture, like looking up movie times. As expected, these students retained less of the lecture material. But what is really interesting is that the learning of students seated near the laptop users was also negatively affected.

Steven Pressfield is one of my favorite authors (go read the War of Art right now if you haven't yet!), and his advice on writing has some interesting group facilitation parallels as well. When you've got a group together to plan for the future, should you start with the villain?

When we get our villain straight in our mind—when we know who he is, what he wants, what his powers and vulnerabilities are—we are working from firm, solid ground when we attack every other part of the story.  Start with the villain.

Absolutely loved this:  How to Raise a Feminist Son

Finally, if you're looking for some holiday reading, you could do a lot worse than choosing from this list of 2017's best reads.