WATCH: How To Avoid The Trap Of Over-Confidence Bias

I’m sure you’ve heard, that a lot of people say a little knowledge is a dangerous thing. Well, scientists have now proven that a little experience is a very dangerous thing. Because, we get an overinflated sense of our own confidence and ability in doing something. The less we have experience, the more confidence we have. And the more experience we get, the less confidence that we have. Until we get to a level of expertise when we regain our confidence.

Dunning Kruger Effect

This called Dunning Krugger Effect and Dunning Kruger did some very interesting experiments. They actually, interviewed drivers in America. And of all the drivers, 88% of the drivers said that they had a driving ability above average. Now, that just makes no statistical sense whatsoever. So actually, the lower our competence level, the lower level of experience, the more like a novice. The more our confidence grows. We initially have a sense of overconfidence, that goes up like this.

The Peak Of Stupidity

The Peak of Stupidity in a number of examples. And then it drops quite precipitously, and comes back up again, as we get to a level of expertise. And it’s interesting, the level of expertise, never goes back up to 100, again, never goes as high as this. It’s only around sort of moderate level of 60% to 70%. Because, experts know that stuff can go wrong, and the things can get in the way. So, what I’d like you to do is to consider this.

When you’re delegating stuff, people who you are delegating to, can easily have a flush of confidence and a flush of being really confident in their own abilities. And then they’re inevitably going to, as reality kicks in, they’re going to really have a crash. And you can see this with a lot of politicians who begin to say, “Yeah, we’ll be able to do this, yeah, we’ll be able to do that”. And then reality kicks in, and they realize actually, that they can’t do half the things that they thought they could. But also, when you get to a level of expertise, and you’re living over here, and you’re really expert at what you do.

It’s important to recognize that other people will actually, have less experience, less ability and less competence. Because, we tend to when we get to a level of expertise, assume, “Well, I can do so surely, it’s simple. Everyone else can do it”. And, they often forget actually that people will go through this curve, and not be able to do things nearly as well as you can yourself. So, watch out for that.



With best regards,

David Klaasen

Talent4Performance help business leaders clarify complexity. We inspire people and drive continuous performance improvement, so they can convert thinking into action and results.

©David Klaasen – 2023