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Ricardo (4s): Hello, everyone. Welcome to the Five Minutes PM podcast today I'd like to discuss a talk that I have with a great friend about Caltech and the Caltech owner Code. Caltech is recognized as a quite different organization because Caltech is one of the top universities in the planet. So absolutely an extremely well known for the science for physics. Usually the home of absolutely extremely smart people. So for those who saw the Big Bang Theory, the series, you can see that kind of behavior and that kind of technical behavior, very clear on the TV show.
Ricardo (44s): But one thing I wanted to talk to you do you and this friend told me is that he said to me, Ricardo do you know that people take it home? The exams At Caltech so they take home. So you have three hours to do the exam. The teacher gives to you Monday and collects back Friday, and you just need to tell what time did you start the exam and what time did you finish. There is a complete sense of honesty from Caltech. So this was a very surprising thing because of course, I had a curiosity about the mindes at Caltech from the Big Bank, Theory. But at the same time, when this friend told me that, I said, What? This is very different because I graduated in a very different environment where when you are doing exams, people isolate you, you cannot carry anything so that they want to inspect You in all senses to make sure that you are not cheating.
Ricardo (1m 39s): So imagine taking home exams, and I read some cases of people that to comic sense. It was a closed book. The book was in front of the candidate, the candidate forgot the formula. The candidate did not open the book and the candidate that failed. And you can find this on the internet. And sometimes you say, look this, is so amazing and so interesting because this is so different from what we see, right? From what we see is that if people have an opportunity to do something. Even knowing that sometimes it's not fair is not the right people do. And we have billions and billions of examples of that.
Ricardo (2m 21s): So what we can learn from that Caltech, since the beginning, since the demission process, they have such a clear honer code saying that taking an unfair advantage from your colleagues or from your professors or faculty or anyone, it's not a behavior that Caltech accepts. So there is a massive peer pressure. So it's not that people do not want to cheat because they will feel punished, but it's just pointless. It's just unfair and pointless. You take an advantage at that. You should not many of your colleagues, they become such a quizzed group that they self regulate their honesty behavior.
Ricardo (3m 6s): And I'm very interested on that because I saw many things. For example, Dan Ariely has a book about dishonesty and talking exactly about on the behavior of people, how people cheat, and that. And this is, was something like an opposite in something so unique. And then you may ask me, Ricardo, what we can learn from that. If we talking about a project environment, if your talking about project economy improves to deliver, then I wanted to ask you a question. What is the point for you to fake your status report? What is the point for you to reduce the risk or the probability or the impact of a risk to be presented for your stakeholders?
Ricardo (3m 48s): When you do that, you run less risk. No, you were just hiding something under the carpet that can come out. So what is the key learning on that? And it's a massive change in behavior. Is there honesty is worth, it's a very worth for you to go back to your stakeholders, then say, look, we have a problem. Or I don't know what the best outcome would be. I don't know what is the real impact of this risk, but we can work together on sorting this out instead of you cheating and faking something that is not real because when it happens, you lose completely your credibility.
Ricardo (4m 32s): So being blunt and being honest, even if this does not drive the best positive answer, these, the right thing to do. And I don't know why in many cases, we just don't do that. We always think that, OK, let's just try to hide this and fix this. And in the future, it will be better. So let's go back to this genuine interest and let's use this example of Caltech. And let's try to understand that truth is always the best way. If you want to get your project done, make your statements and your decision based on true things and do not cheat at all on the timeline on the cost, because people will see that and you will lose complete your credibility.
Ricardo (5m 20s): This is why many times we see projects failing dramatically or meeting their deadlines or meeting their intended outcome. Because what is true is not what we see on paper. So we always produce optimistic outcomes, optimistic results, because you want to sell the projects. You do not necessarily want to deliver the project. Think about that and see you next week. And congratulations one more time for Caltech for this absolutely brilliant example that we all should follow up.