Another article by Joel that makes a nice honours topic: smart and gets things done. We have people in academia with IQs of 130+ who basically achieve nothing. The world is, of course, overflowing with people who get nothing done. There are those too who get things done: the wrong things!
So finding people who are smart and get thing done will be of value. Detecting companies run by and staffed by these people will be a good investment guide. How can we do it?
How can we select smart? – easy: there are many IQ tests, and they all measure the same construct: general ability.
But how do we measure getting things done? Is that organization? Maybe. Conscientiousness? (no – too high and you can’t tolerate the noise that abounds during getting things done).
How about “energy”? This is my best bet: just plain energy. The ability to work hard, physically and mentally. To not give in, to not sit idle, not to be busy with busy work.