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Author: Nalebuff, Barry
Resulting in 1 citation.
1. Ayres, Ian
Nalebuff, Barry
For the Love of the Game
Forbes Magazine, OutFront, March 12, 2007: .
Cohort(s): NLSY79
Keyword(s): Armed Forces Qualifications Test (AFQT); Test Scores/Test theory/IRT

Permission to reprint the abstract has not been received from the publisher.

We'd like you to take a short aptitude test. From among the possible answers listed for each question in the table (below), circle the one that is the correct code number for that word. Taken at face value this has to be one of the dumbest tests ever devised. If you can read, then you can find the answers. It turns out that you've just taken part of the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery. These questions were originally designed to find people who would be well suited to clerical positions.

Now for the surprise. Harvard postdoc Carmit Segal has just completed a study that shows that a person's coding-test results predict how much money the person will earn 20 years later in life. A one-standard-deviation increase in coding speed translates into a 7% increase in future income.

So clerical skills predispose you for a chief executive slot? Not quite. As it turns out, the performance on this coding test was measuring something other than clerical skills, and it was that something that is an ingredient for success. That something is conscientiousness.

Bibliography Citation
Ayres, Ian and Barry Nalebuff. "For the Love of the Game." Forbes Magazine, OutFront, March 12, 2007: .