Start With “I Don’t Know”
February 19, 2020
I thought I had strong business acumen until I took some wrong calls.
I thought I had good relationship management skills until I erred on some people decisions.
I thought I was good at leadership until I took some wrong decisions.
I thought I was great at Sales until I lost a big deal.
I thought I was great at Marketing until a campaign I launched, bombed.
I have written in the past that mistakes make for a great teacher if we can mindfully take the learning and improve.
But the problem with mistakes is that they can be very expensive and painful, sometimes.
Is there no way I can learn something valuable without having to experience the pain of the mistake?
There is a way. If I start by humbly accepting the fact that I don’t know everything.
Whenever I have gone with a strong conviction that I know, I’ve done it all, I am the expert, there is a mistake waiting round the corner, to ambush me.
If Instead I start with the acceptance that there is still so much that I do not know, my mind is tuned to the frequency of learning. Because I don’t know everything, I seek answers by asking the right questions and I am open to taking help, inputs and guidance from others on how to deal with any situation.
There is a thin line between confidence and over confidence. Confidence is when I know I have the skill and competence to deal with a challenge. Over confidence is when I believe that only I know the best way or the only way to deal with the challenge.
The humility to accept that I don’t know everything creates a possibility for me to learn something new and strive for growth. It is like a vaccine that inoculates me against the virus of over confidence.