ELITE COMMON KNOWLEDGE IS A BOTTLENECK

In game theory common knowledge simply refers to what everyone who is playing the game knows. If you walked onto a tennis court not knowing what it meant to serve for a game, you are at a disadvantage. Your opponent could take advantage of you or at the very least, feel confident that she is the better player because you do not even know how the game is played.

You could also be shamed for walking into a game you know nothing about. While the effects of this knowledge gap are not life-changing the same cannot be said for landing a good first job.


In decades of advising students what strikes me is the hurdles in discovering exactly what makes for a good interview. There is a hole that often is not filled until it is too late. Students attend classes, work, hang out with friends, and get on with their lives without knowing that a massive hurdle faces them. How to convince a prospective employer that you have something to offer besides good grades. Yet, resumes of elementary school kids are refined as I write this. This bottleneck must end. The only way is to share common knowledge. Why not have an email list of students sent out to the best college to distribute to a student diversity club with a small “ask” – please pick a few names to correspond with about completing college prepared for a good job. An old-fashioned pen pal solution is low cost and scalable. Low-hanging fruit does not only apply to investments but also to creating a diverse pool of talent.


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