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Everyone’s an expert now

But where’s the expertise?
Dateline: 7 August 2024

Here’s the thing: Now that knowledge is universally accessible, it doesn’t take much more than a few hours of surfing the interwebs to glean insight into the most intractable conundrum. You can even acquire a valuable new skill by watching a few YouTube vids on the subject; DIY-as-a-Service.

It’s no longer rocket science to learn all about, well, rocket science. Which makes everyone an instant expert; and happy to demonstrate their expertise on Twitgram and FaceApp. Except they’re not. Informed opinions are not the same as unassailable facts. Faced with an inexhaustible smorgasbord of facts, opinions, analysis and speculation – and fake news – we’re often seduced by confirmation bias, rejecting anything that doesn’t reinforce our internally sacred beliefs.

What complicates the issue is that we’re encouraged to ignore conventional wisdom, and become mavericks, in our quest for innovative solutions and new business models. Especially when the old paradigms no longer work. In those situations, often the ‘expert’ can tell us all the ways something will fail – but they fail to see how it might work, if we can forget the past!

“In the mind of the beginner, almost anything is possible!” said one sage, and that’s true, though you might have to fail many times before you find the formula for success.

But rejecting dogma isn’t an excuse for turning ignorance into a virtue. Don’t let the Dunning-Kruger effect sneak up on you – that’s where you know just enough to think you know it all – and respect real expertise for what it can bring: A shortcut to more informed decision making and better solutions.

Like Richard Feynman, I’d rather have questions that can’t be answered, than answers that can’t be questioned; but let’s not make a hero out of stupid. Even if they are sometimes right!

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Warning: Hazardous Thinking at Work

Despite appearances to the contrary, Futureworld cannot and does not predict the future. Our Mindbullets scenarios are fictitious and designed purely to explore possible futures, challenge and stimulate strategic thinking. Use these at your own risk. Any reference to actual people, entities or events is entirely allegorical. Copyright Futureworld International Limited. Reproduction or distribution permitted only with recognition of Copyright and the inclusion of this disclaimer. © Public domain image.

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