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The Importance of Human Connection

The Mission Newsletter, 7/9/2018

“Obstacles don’t have to stop you. If you run into a wall, don’t turn around and give up. Figure out how to climb it, go through it, or work around it.” — Michael Jordan

The Importance of Human Connection with Mark Viden

Episode 51 of The Mission Daily

Mark Viden, the VP of Marketing for Dignity Health, stops by for a chat about building a successful brand.

Listen to Episode 51 of The Mission Daily.

The Mission Daily is a podcast dedicated to accelerated learning and helping you become healthier, wealthier, and wiser. It is designed to help you learn — as fast as you possibly can.

From the Archives

What Happens When You Jump

“Take stock of your surroundings. Jumping into some things is good, but remember that you’re only one jump away from catastrophe. There is always another opportunity coming, and sometimes it pays to stay put. Sometimes it pays to jump. The only person that will know the right answer when the time comes is you.”

This is The Story of a boy with an unusual upbringing who grew into a man who would try anything…

Read: What Happens When You Jump.

News That Matters


Hawaii became the first U.S. state to sign legislation banning sunscreen containing two chemicals thought to be harmful to the coral reefs in the ocean surrounding the islands.

The chemicals, oxybenzone, and octinoxate, are said to be contributing factors in the ongoing deterioration of the health of the coral reefs, which are also being harmed by runoff from land, invasive species, and climate change.

Residents of Hawaii will still be able to protect their skin, though, as various other sunscreen options are available. Companies have until 2021, when the ban goes into effect, to continue working to find ways to protect human health, and also the health of the surrounding ecosystems.

More here.


Last year, 255,000 Americans 85 and older were working, the highest number on record. The jobs they take vary from crossing guard to truck driver, but the importance of this measure is not what these older Americans are doing, it’s that they’re doing anything at all.

Since the recession in 2006, the American workforce has been trending older. In part, it’s because of economic unrest, but factors such as longer life expectancy, higher education levels, and shrinking retirement plans also playing into why people are working longer.

For more info on the aging workforce, check here.


In a recent study called The Life, Liberty, and Happiness Project, which was run by Peter Francia, a political science professor at East Carolina University and director of the school’s Center for Survey Research, it was revealed that, overall, Americans are a pretty happy bunch.

In a poll, 68% of Americans agreed with the statement that read, “Overall, I am satisfied with my life.” The older generation reported being happier than the Gen Xers or Millennials, but it is important to note that factors such as political stress and financial worries were major criteria cited in why someone might be a little less happy. As the younger generations are still finding their way professionally, and are in the middle of some of the more politically divided times the country has witnessed, it’s not a shock that their happiness index is slightly lower than the generation that grew up in economic boom time.

Some other interesting findings in the study include that drug addiction and access to healthcare are the top two concerns in regards to health, and that majority of those surveyed (56%) believe that marijuana should be legalized.

Read more from the study here.

Tech Trends

Michael Green, a visionary architect, has proven that it is possible to recreate the Empire State building using only wood. 102 stories, made with wood.

It’s that idea that Green is hoping will pave the way to people accepting that more and more projects can be done with wood, too.

“We can build 35 storeys — why not? Making that proposal expanded everybody’s imagination. It’s the same with the Empire State Building study project, and the conversation about tall buildings. It’s not because I think that’s likely to be the future. The future is really about people’s needs, which is buildings set at 12, 15, 18 storeys. These are the kind of heights that the majority of the population live in.”

Green believes using wood will be more sustainable in the future, and will also bring back a sense that buildings are meaningful and should be saved, rather than torn down and started from scratch after only 20 years.

Read more about Green’s thoughts on a wood-filled future here.

Marketing Trends

Through 26 years at Microsoft, CMO Chris Capossela has seen the company grow into one of the most successful the world has ever had. His success — and in turn, Microsoft’s — is based on what he terms as moving the lens.

It’s important to give yourself a fresh perspective and find new ideas. Sometimes that means moving jobs or geographies or teams, but it can all be within the same company. In doing that, Capossela has helped Microsoft become the empowerment company that allows for both employees and customers to succeed. And, in order to hire the best talent, Capossela says that most of the young innovators today are looking for a company with purpose over one that just has good products

Check out more of what Chris has to say about being successful here.

Education Trends

It’s not the nuclear codes or the trade secrets of the newest Apple tech. No, the most tightly held secrets are often found … in the ivy-covered walls of Harvard University and all the other ivy league schools.

Admissions to these prestigious universities are highly competitive. As such, how each university goes about making their decisions about which of the qualified applicants are offered admission is kept tightly sealed. So, when Harvard was targeted in a lawsuit claiming the university discriminated against specific applicants, the college argued to keep certain documents out of the public domain.

“It is not difficult to imagine how Harvard’s competitors might try to utilize information about Harvard’s yield rates, or the number of students Harvard seeks to admit from certain geographic territories, to their advantage and to Harvard’s detriment,” Harvard’s lawyers said.

The idea is that the way colleges evaluate applicants should be considered proprietary, in the same way that a patent or other company information is protected.

Find out more here.

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The Best of What We Are Using

We’ve been busy traveling all across the country enjoying the summer weather in different parts of the US. ✈️ ☀️

One of our must-have travel companions is a pair of soundproof headphones. They’ve completely revolutionized our air travel experience. 🎧

Although they can get pricey, if you travel even a few times a year, we highly recommend picking up a pair. (They are also a great tool to help you stay focused when you are working in a public space.)

Writer Spotlights

12 Rules of Directing by Ben Mattingly

The 13 Best Apps to Maximize Your Business Productivity by Larry Kim

Our Media

The Mission is a new kind of media company. We publish stories, videos, and podcasts to help smart people get smarter. You can find us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram or learn more about us here. We’d love to connect!

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We create custom podcast sponsorships for enterprise companies. To learn more about why companies like Salesforce trust us to produce results, connect with our team here.

The Importance of Human Connection was originally published in The Mission on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.

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