When LB and I caught up with Chris Roberts a hedge fund manager based in Hong Kong he made an interesting point during our conversation – he said that trading is not a committee. The implication is clear, trading is a solo endeavour and should be treated and embraced as such. My observation has always been that part of the poor performance of many funds is not only the simple fact that they dont know what they are doing but rather they suffer from an inverse of the the wisdom of the crowds. Instead of group opinion leading to a more cohesive and comprehensive answer the decisions the group makes actually degrades the overall fidelity of the decision. Groups often make people dumber but they feel vindicated in their stupidity because everyone around them is stupid.
In October a researcher at the remote Bellingshausen Station in Antarctica allegedly stabbed a colleague. Some reports attributed the incident to the victim giving away the endings of books the attacker was reading.
Other reports identify the cabin fever effect as a possible contributing factor. During extended periods in isolation and confined conditions, such as at a station in Antarctica, people can become restlessness, bored and irritated.
These effects, however, are not limited to the small number of scientists living in cabin-like environments in remote locations. Isolation can just as easily affect people on the move, such as the drivers of the 3.5 million freight vehicles registered in Australia. Studies cite social isolation as a recurring theme and a cause of mental health problems and dysfunctional family relationships for truck drivers.
Interestingly, knowledge workers are also increasingly prone to suffering from isolation. This is because the ability to work “anywhere, anytime” has led to the development of new organisational structures that have increased the effects of isolation by increasing the social distance within a distributed workforce.
Depression, stress, lack of motivation and eventually burnout are all possible consequences of isolation. Other effects include experiencing fears of missing out on crucial events or decisions being made by others elsewhere – colloquially known as the feeling of out of sight, out of mind.
More here – The Conversation