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Nate’s Notes 85: Dan Siciliano | Imagine You Might Be Wrong

By August 14, 2023No Comments

Dan Siciliano

Co-founder and CEO of Nikkl, Inc and former Associate Dean at Stanford Law School

F. Daniel Siciliano - Stanford Law School

I love the lessons Dan shared today about overconfidence.

First, imagine that you might be wrong. We’re prone to be overconfident, which can reduce empathy, decrease creativity, and increase stress. I love how Dan applies this lesson, both when dealing with his children (even if they are almost certainly wrong), and with business executives. At the very least, imagining we might be wrong helps us feel empathy. And just because we’ve been right about something in the past doesn’t mean we’ll be right in the future, because all roads, no matter how long, eventually curve.

Second, I love Dan’s techniques for dealing with potential overconfidence. Saying things like, “I bet neither of us is exactly right” or “I’m willing to change my mind” will likely be received much better than telling someone they’re wrong.

In the words of Mark Twain:  “It ain’t what you don’t know that gets you into trouble. It’s what you know for sure that just ain’t so.”

It’s a simple idea. Please take it seriously.

Dan Siciliano Bio:

Dan Siciliano is Co-founder and CEO of Nikkl, Inc as well as the current Chair of the Council of Federal Home Loan Banks. Has has consulted with the Boards of Fortune 500 companies including Google, Microsoft, Fedex, & Disney, and invested in, and advised, firms in Silicon Valley, Hong Kong, India, and Latin America.

Dan’s teaching includes Finance, Governance, and Venture Capital and he has testified in front of both the U.S. Senate and the House of Representatives. From 2009-2011, alongside Ben Bernanke, Paul Krugman, and Carl Icahn, Dan was named to the “Directorship 100” – a list of the most influential people in corporate governance.

He was co-founder, CEO and Executive Chairman of LawLogix Group – a technology company named nine times to the Inc. 500 and ranked in the Top 100 fastest-growing private companies in the US.

In 2006 Dan co-founded the Stanford Rock Center, and as Associate Dean at Stanford Law School, led the Center until 2017.

Dan is a first-generation Mexican-American, and he chairs the American Immigration Council. He is a board member at the Latino Corporate Director Education Foundation and is policy expert and activist on issues of immigrant/refugee rights, corporate and boardroom diversity, and related matters of economic development.

I hope you enjoy learning from Dan Siciliano today, because I always do.

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