Reflections on organizational observations

On the benefits of being under resourced

An organization that is under-resourced is similar to an individual who regularly practices intermittent fasting.

In the case of the individual, weaker cells are cannibalized by the body to produce new cells. Studies has shown decreased probability of developing cancer and Alzheimer, coupled in some cases with increased longevity.

In the case of the organization, operations are forced to be focused and only opportunities backed by stronger market signals prioritized and pursued. Wastage and distractions are structurally curtailed. ROI improves as a by product.

On organic growth

An organization that is organically grown tends to be happen-chance and exhibit somewhat illegible and opaque structure.

In contrast, an organization that is deliberately designed tends to exhibit a legible and transparent structure.

Counter intuitively, it is the former that exhibits more resilience in times of environmental stress. The observed illegibility and opaqueness is attributed to the process of organic adaption to its environment. Chief historical examples are:

  • Military of Carthage
  • Genghis Khan’s Mongolian horde

Related readings

Reflections on bad trades – the narrative fallacy or apophenia

The main challenge with sticking to the strategy of loss aversion & reversion to mean is, as Charlie Munger has said it, being able to stand there and do nothing when no trading pattern emerges for multiple days in rows.

During this period of time, restlessness creeps in and the mind becomes more susceptible to the narrative fallacy or apophenia ( seeing patterns and trajectories when none exists). Inevitably one gets tricked into nursing grandiose visions of what the future might be and while leaving the physics of reality behind…

Actual costly examples:

  • Spotify 2nd May 2018 @168 when it continue its climbs
    • net loss on the swing -USD1,016.04
  • Tesla 10th May 2018 @ USD308 when it continue its climb
    • net loss on the swing -USD5138.85
  • DocuSign 18th June 2018 @ USD65.66 when it continued its climb
    • net loss on the swing -USD6023.37
  • Dropbox 18th June 2018 @ USD42.53 when it continued its climb
    • net loss on the swing -USD928.21

Accumulative screw ups: -USD12,986.72

Had I not succumb to the siren calls of the narrative fallacy and retained my ability to sit and down nothing, I might have the opportunity to enter on the dip instead of the up.

Nevertheless all hope is not lost, the path remains clear and apparent. That is to diligently practice the craft of adhering to the script while acknowledging the psychological biases.

Ironically, the practice of investment is synonymous with the practice of mindfulness.

Book Summary: The One-Minute Workout

Background of author

  • Professor/research at the McMaster university

Key points

  • Small changes on a daily basis build up over the long term into substantial impact
  • Workouts don’t have to last an hour
  • Interval training can cut duration can be less than 10mins
  • There is a misconception that Anaerobic exercises do not contribute to Aerobic performance
  • The harder you go, the more efficient your workout will be in terms of time commitment
  • Disturbance from homeostasis is defined as the rate in which energy stores are depleted from (glycogen & blood sugar)
  • The greater the disturbance from homeostasis, the greater the adaptation
  • The size of the disturbance matters
  • Interval training provides as many disturbances as there are repetitions
  • To scatter exercise throughout the day

Interval Training

Key findings

  • The amount of blood the heart was able to pump improved by 17%
  • Likelihood o die of heart disease for
    • people exercising once per week for a long duration
    • people exercising once per week for a short duration
    • people who exercise for multiple times per week
    • Just need to exercise hard once per week


  • Protocol 1
    1. 3 all out sprints for 20 seconds on the bicycle
  • Protocol 2
    • 10 minutes warm up
    • 4 intervals of 4 minutes walking to get to 90-95% of peak heart rate
    • 3 minutes of rest between intervals
  • REHIT protocol
    • 3 x 20 second sprints
    • 3 x per week
    • 6 weeks
    • results:
      • cardiorespiratory fitness improvement
        • men 15%
        • women 12%
    • BURPEE based workout
      • minimum 10 repetitions
      • 2x / day
      • work till exhaustion

Intermitten Fasting

Key findings

  • Helps in managing blood glucose, lipids and other biomarkers of health
  • subjects only overeat by 20% of their caloric intake the day after they when they break fast
  • Subjects on program for 8-12 weeks lost 5-6% of body weight
  • Its ok to conduct interval training during fasts


  • Protocol 1
    • 1 day of normal eating
    • 1 day of restricting caloric intake to 25-50% (500 calories)
  • Protocol 2
    • 1 day fasting
    • 1 day eating normal
  • Protocol 3
    • 1 day fasting
    • 6 days of normal eating

Further readings

  • Fast Diet, Michael Mosley, 2013