From Lessons on Leading by Jessica Steel :

Leaders recognize that we should feel 60% mastery and 40% stretch in our jobs at any given time. We draw our confidence from the 60% we know we’re nailing, and we grow from the challenge of the 40% that is new and uncomfortable for us. Leaders focus on this equation for all of their employees. And, for themselves. Confident, challenged and happy employees tend to stick around.

This struck a chord with me on one of the most under-focused roles of managers, because, of course, it’s hard to make it happen, but at the same time, this is what employees appreciate the most, besides salary raises (and sometimes in lieu of salary as well).

P.S. I also liked the “A leader’s job is to absorb anxiety and instill confidence among employees” part in the above linked article.

Recently the Obama re-election campaign employed similar population-wide behavioral analytics to micro-target voters to ensure his re-election. There is no reason why we in India must not look to technology to devise ingenious methods for near real time data collection and population-wide analytics of social performance. This will not only help micro-target and localise welfare Interventions by local Governments (as opposed to centralised schemes) but it will also shift the focus away from agenda-driven politicking based on lagging indicators and towards a debate on actionable interventions that can make a difference here and now.

I love this idea in this article in Niti Central on how we can leverage technology for social welfare.

The bit about Obama’s re-election campaign is best read about in this article called The nerds go marching in, although I still haven’t been able to find specifics about the tools that they built.

P.S. Also see Wikipedia article on Microtargeting.