link roundup
Link Roundup

Link Roundup #94: 10 Things to Know This Week

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1. How Managers Can Support Employees With Long Covid – MIT Sloan

We are moving into endemic phase. It seems that lots of people getting Covid-19 is considered unavoidable as long as the death toll remains low(-ish).

However, the outcome of getting Covid is not simply death or complete recovery. There’s also the in-between recovered-but-still-in-pain situation, where some people suffer from prolonged symptoms, sometimes lasting even years. This is called long Covid.

It’s not a stretch to say more people than you think are suffering from long Covid, who still have to work. Hopefully they (you?) will have the support you need from the workplace, if you’re unlucky enough to get it.

2. Stuck in a Mental Fog? 5 Research-Backed Ways to Clear Your Mind – Inc

Even if you manage to avoid Covid-19, you could still be affected by something that affected almost everyone during the pandemic – brain fog.

If your head frequently feels ‘foggy’, then read this article. It may help. At the very least, you’ll know what caused it – prolonged stress and anxiety.

3. Here’s What Doomscrolling Is Doing to Your Brain – And How to Fix It – Science Alert

If you read the article above (#2), you’ll know doomscrolling is one of the reasons why we are experiencing brain fog.

This article goes a little bit deeper into what doomscrolling does to the brain. It’s not good…

However, I must say that doomscrolling is the reason why I chanced upon the Gender Pay Gap bot.

4. This bot is tweeting pay disparity data at companies posting about International Women’s Day – The Verge

The Gender Pay Gap bot on Twitter is one of the very few things (if not the only thing) that cheered me during International Women’s Day. It exposed how much women are paid in UK companies, compared to their male counterparts.

Even though it’s sad to see many companies still pay women less (being paid 20-40% less isn’t uncommon..), it’s a nice change from the faux-celebratory messages and lip service we usually see from corporates. Now that the companies are shamed publicly, maybe some of them will take some steps to improve.

5. When People Assume You’re Not In Charge Because You’re a Woman– HBR

Gender pay gap is not the only thing we have to improve on. We also have to get used to women in authority positions. Let’s learn a new term: role incredulity.

Role incredulity is a form of gender bias where women are mistakenly assumed to be in a support or stereotypically female role — secretary, administrative assistant, court reporter, nurse, wife, girlfriend — rather than a leadership or stereotypically male role, such as CEO, professor, lawyer, doctor, or engineer.

In these instances, women must expend extra energy and time to assert and sometimes prove their role. Their words may lack the credibility and authority inherent in their position.

Role incredulity surfaced as a common theme in our research dataset of women’s stories from interviews, open-ended survey responses, social media posts, and public articles.

How to avoid this form of gender bias? Until proven otherwise, just assume the women you’re meeting with are the person in charge.

Another type of gender bias that you may have – looking down on househusbands.

6. Local Media Criticised For Censoring Face of Househusband, Sparks Debate on Shame of Being One – World of Buzz

The other day I tweeted about how a local media implies being a househusband is shameful. It got quoted in WORLD OF BUZZ.

Listen, any household arrangement is good as long as the couple is mutually supportive and no one is taking advantage of the other. It doesn’t matter who’s making the money. Men who are househusbands, stay strong and don’t bother what people say. Keep being good dads and husbands.

7. Financial Literacy Programs Ignore That Poverty Is a Policy Choice – Teen Vogue

Let’s move on to financial literacy. Look at wonderfully-written article arguing that poverty is the result of systemic inequality rather than individual choice:

…economic inequality isn’t driven by a knowledge gap. As progressive economists and advocates have said over the years, poverty is a policy choice — meaning that poverty is the result of things like rising housing costs and stagnant wages, a starved social safety net and the criminalization of offenses that are often driven by need, all of which could be addressed through more visionary policies.

Poverty is the result of capitalist free market principles that prioritize continued labor exploitation and resource extraction in service of increasing profits, regardless of the material impacts on people’s lives, their communities, and the planet itself.

I am in AWE that this article was published in Teen Vogue magazine. This is what our publications should be publishing. Not shaming househusbands.

8. The parasite economy – The Economist

Here’s another piece of info that proves poverty and wealth inequality issue in Malaysia is systemic. Look at the chart below. Are we surprised that Malaysia is #2 in the crony-capitalism index? Are we?

This means that unless you are a crony, you’re highly unlikely to be a billionaire in Malaysia.

9. Overhaul Needed for BNPL as Losses Mount up to US$ 5.2 Billion in APAC – FintechNews HK

Learning that BNPL companies are not making money and in fact making billions in losses is the schadenfreude I needed today.

Quinlan and Associates, an independent strategy consulting firm, estimates that in Asia-Pacific (APAC), the largest BNPL firms, including Australia’s Afterpay and Japan’s Paidy, are currently running average profit margins of -15% per annum (p.a.), while the more nascent players operating in emerging markets like the Philippines’ Cashalo and Indonesia’s Akulaku are suffering from profit margins of -100% p.a.

This means that under their current business models, APAC BNPL players are facing a combined loss of US$5.2 billion by 2025, the firm estimates.

However, it seems they are not giving up. They are figuring out ‘BNPL operations optimisation’ strategies including, I kid you not, targeting users who would use BNPL to buy big-ticket durables and luxuries.

BNPL operations optimization, Source: Buy Now, Pray Later: Solving for Commercial Sustainability in Asia Pacific’s BNPL Industry, Quinlan and Associates

Another proof that all these financing companies want is for you to buy more expensive things you don’t need.

10. How I Live on a $3200 Monthly Salary in Singapore | Budgeting as a Homeowner and Sole Breadwinner – Lisa’s Adulting in Singapore

And last but not least, I’d like to share this wonderful how-I-manage-my-salary video. Although she is a Singaporean and some details are not applicable for us Malaysians, I find her thought process very insightful. Loved the way she explained how she uses her budget template.

That’s it for this round, catch you next time! Want to submit a link you thought was great? Reach out to me on FB or Twitter.

To read past link roundups, please click here.

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