Behavioural Economics and watch collecting

Richard Thaler, Daniel Kahneman and Amos Tversky are the pioneers of the field called “behavioural economics”, two of them even won Nobel prizes for their work and the third would have too, if he was alive to receive it. The trio uncovered numerous ways in which people make poor decisions without knowing it. Here’s a short podcast where Thaler tells a number of stories that bring behavioural economics to life. I wanted to talk about some of their findings (again) and apply it to watch collecting in some way.

Hedgehogs and Foxes in the watch industry

To summarise the concept; some people see the details in everything they do, like the fox, while others are great at having a singular vision, like the hedgehog. Going back to a critical distiction in the definition of the concept, Jim Collins says it perfectly: The Hedgehog Concept is not a goal to be the best, a strategy to be to be the best, an intention to be the best, a plan to be the best. It is an understanding of what you can be the best at. The distinction is absolutely crucial.  

Journalism in the watch industry

I have seen messages from journalists who are being contacted directly by the collaborator in this watch release, and they are being rudely chastised for something as simple as ‘liking a meme’ about the faulty watch! These journalists are being accused of, in summary, surrendering their own impartiality, by showing support to memes about the watch. Is this how low it goes?

Ming watches: customer disservice redefined

After yesterday’s post… Someone reached out to me with his own experience and I will share it here today. These are simply screenshots of the various conversations, as-received.

The freedom to have enough

I recently shared a video from “Daily_stoic” talking about the concept of “enough” – this post is building on this idea, since the video resonated with many folks.

Impostor syndrome in watch collecting

The term ‘imposter syndrome’ was first coined in 1978 by two US psychologists who called it the ‘imposter phenomenon’. They defined it as feeling like a fraud despite obvious successes and high achievements. Although this concept is mostly applied to workplaces and working professionals in various fields, it absolutely does apply in watch collecting, and I believe it signals a loss of one’s perspective – which just needs some recalibration.

The “Front Page Test” for watch collectors

The “Front Page Test” is an easy ethics standard which requires asking yourself: “How would I feel if the course of action I am considering were reported on the front page of the local newspaper or in a popular blog?”. The idea is, if you feel this would be uncomfortable or create problems for you, then the best course of action is to change the intended course of action. Simple as that.

Yak shaving and watch collecting

Have you ever heard of the term “Yak shaving”? The term was supposedly coined by Carlin Vieri from MIT, but others attribute its popularity to a Ren and Stimpy episode. Either way, I found it had some applicability to watch collecting, so I decided to share some thoughts on this; while slightly obscure and not wholly enlightening… hopefully still educational!