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Imposter syndrome

Colin Campbell
by Colin Campbell on 08/03/18 18:00

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In November 2017 Shaun Sellars spoke about the Dunning-Kruger affect at our Failure Conference.

It was an extraordinary lecture and has filtered back into everything that I teach now, influenced my practice and day to day life.

Sometimes the greatest things come from the most unexpected moments.

Within that lecture Shaun explained that individuals who are on the 12% line of the competency curve will likely rate themselves at 62% leading to a horrible discrepancy of confidence and competence.

Surprisingly though the converse is true and people at the high end of the competency curve often score themselves low.

This is known as ‘imposter syndrome’ and is a terrible cross to bear because the people who suffer from it (and there are many) assume that they’re not supposed to be there and it’s only a matter of time before they get ‘found out’; having the man tap them on the back and telling them “it’s time to go”. 

It is truly awful to have someone who is considerably less competent than they are confident but actually worse for someone suffering from ‘imposter syndrome’.

Very rarely do we find someone with a confidence level that matches the level of their competence and this is something to consider really carefully in many, many aspects of your life as you go about your work and daily chores.

Particularly though ‘imposter syndrome’ leads to a lack of ability to delegate because if you don’t have confidence in yourself at the correct level, how can you possibly have confidence in someone else to do a similar task? 

A psychological assessment of yourself, your intellect and your capabilities are perhaps an important thing we can begin to harness in trying to improve, at least my profession but probably many others professions too.


Blog post number: 1575

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Colin Campbell
Written by Colin Campbell
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