I'm an expert

I can't tell you how many times I hear men claim their expertise in business [and I purposely wrote "men"]. It's a constant and it's grating.  Because as expert as you may have been, it doesn't always mean you will be an expert in the here and now. Failure to understand that has consequences - largely around innovation. Research backs me up on this:

"the negative consequences of self-confidence, which leads people to stick with and repeat the actions that brought them past success — and forgo exploring new ideas or methods that might lead to more innovations."



The Bullshit Factor

--Anyone who works in finance will sense, at least at first, the pressure to pretend to know more than he does. It’s not just that people who pick stocks, or predict the future price of oil and gold, or select targets for corporate acquisitions, or persuade happy, well-run private companies to go public don’t know what they are talking about: what they pretend to know is unknowable. Much of what Wall Street sells is less like engineering than like a forecasting service for a coin-flipping contest -- except that no one mistakes a coin-flipping contest for a game of skill. To succeed in this environment you must believe, or at least pretend to believe, that you are an expert in matters where no expertise is possible. I’m not sure it’s any easier to be a total fraud on Wall Street than in any other occupation, but on Wall Street you will be paid a lot more to forget your uneasy feelings.


~Michael Lewis, Occupational Hazards of Working on Wall Street