Stanford GSB Sloan Study Notes, Week 2, Summer quarter
Pages assigned for reading: 310
- Reminder: think of normals not in their absolute value, but as “how many standard deviations from mean” (Statistics)
- After going through the theory and visualisations behind probabilities of standard normal distribution (Z) and t-distributions, I have a growing suspicion, that in 95% (pun intended) of real life business cases needing confidence estimates, we’ll be dealing with a simple constant: 2. (In case of 95% probability on standard normal distribution, Z=1.96 and in cases the sample size n < 30, you should technically use t but, it in reality tends to be so close, that all other uncertainties around sampling and data collection would rarely be less than the benefits of simplicity of multiplication by two) (Statistics reading + class discussions)
Now with first week of classes behind us and the pile of week 2 reading still looking daunting on Sunday night despite the efforts of the day, I am stuck with the question if and how I want to keep any notes on what we learn here.
As a tip from a 2012 Sloan, I will at least try to log some “aha” moments encountered on a way. Expect most of these things be quite random, not rocket science or revolutionarily new. Just something about them (wording, angle, connections with my experience, who knows) clicked with me. Hope this collection will later be helpful as a memorization tool for myself, but also help shed some light for those curious what kind of topics Stanford GSB and the Sloan program in particular entail. Especially if this little routine survives all other calendar pressures, don’t expect a high level of editorial polishing.
Also, probably most interesting new thoughts already in week 1 came from real-life stories shared by classmates inside the theoretical context framed by professors. As an unfair teaser I can say we’ve already heard about topics as varied as debt collection related deaths in Asia, media relations management around an international security operation in an Arabic state or competition-orchestrated manipulation with local community opinion in Australia. But as we’ve agreed the details of the discussions in class need to be confidential and trusted to be truly open, I won’t be able to share much more in this post nor in the future. Unless any of the sources would be willing to share them themselves, dear Sloans? 🙂
I considered writing a “how to” kind of a post for grad students arriving to Stanford for the first time, but got lucky – my GSB Sloan 2013 classmate Herbert already did just that here. So if that’s the web search topic that got you here – go read what Herbert says, I (for the most part) fully agree.
But nevertheless, let me add a few more random thoughts, impressions and inspirations from the first 2 weeks: