57. Fake it until you make it? Why pretending you have it all figured out is an outdated mindset.


Evidence illustrates that we incorrectly assume that confidence represents competence. This recognition has manifested as a “fake it until you make it” mindset. If we can just act like we have it all figured out then our colleagues and clients will believe us.


This no longer works. We’re finally more aware of this bias, partly because of recent research, and partly because we’ve been burned by these constituents.

Confidence as competence now surfaces in a new and more helpful manner. Namely, we are more likely to see others as competent when they are comfortable admitting that they don’t know the answer. Further, we see them as more competent when they are proactive enough to explain how they’ll go about figuring it out.


Fake it until you make it is old news. We want people who ask good questions, dig in and do research, and then put it all together.

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