In the past I’ve talked about the value of optimism in life and at work, how the two intersect, and different challenges that crop up to sway even the most confident and consistent optimists. I examined a high-ranking executive who’d had some setbacks, but was able to get over them, excel further than another, shall we say, crabbier personality, and create significant value for his organisation and workforce.
What’s interesting about this is that
When people judge their chances of experiencing a good outcome — landing a big account, getting promoted, having a successful marriage, making a good financial investment — they estimate their odds to be better than average. When they consider the chances of something bad happening — losing a big account, getting fired, getting divorced — they assume odds lower than what they estimate for others.
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