So I just finished reading The 4-Hour Work Week, by Tim Ferriss. My brother the economist was appalled when he saw me reading it at his house in Denver this weekend, but what can I say? I like books about employment and this one certainly qualifies
I’ll save the review for another post (assuming anyone cares), but I was rather intrigued by this passage from pp. 90-91:
“For all four years of school, I had a policy. If I received anything less than an A on the first paper or non-multiple choice test in a given class, I would bring 2-3 hours of questions to the grader’s office hours and not leave until the other had answered them all or dropped out of exhaustion.
This served two important purposes:
1. I learned exactly how the grader evaluated work, including his or her prejudiced and pet peeves.
2. The grader would think long and hard about ever giving me less than an A. he or she would never consider giving me a bad grade without exceptional reasons for doing so, as he or she knew I’d come knocking for another three-hour visit.”
When I first read this I thought it would never work on me because I’d be thrilled to have student actually come to my office hours to talk about the material, rather than to explain why they haven’t produced the assignment on time. Then I digested the part about 2-3 hours of questions. I can’t imagine where 2-3 hours of questions on ANY undergraduate assignment would come from, but perhaps that’s just a failure of my imagination.
Do you think Ferriss’ strategy would work on you? I could certainly see this working on an underpaid teaching assistant, but do you think this strategy would work on a tenured professor?
Oh yeah, it helps to know that Ferriss went to Princeton.