My Opinion: Admit It When You Don’t Know Something




Dear Readers:

Very recently, I had a conversation with an up-and-coming planner who asked my thoughts on a topic and seemed shocked when I told him I would need to do a little research and get back to him. “I expected you to know everything,” he said half-jokingly and I couldn’t help but to laugh. If there is one thing I know to be to be true it is that I know that I have a lot to learn. As far as I am concerned, we all do. It is for this reason that I only hire people who can teach me–and one another– something. I love to sit with my staff members and brainstorm ideas and allow them to share their own special wisdom as much as I enjoy sharing the lessons from my own past experiences.

I know it’s not popular to admit when we don’t know something, but I wonder when curiosity and room to grow became an indicator for lack of talent, ability or professionalism. Of course, we must all have a foundation and skills to be successful, but the idea that once someone is in a certain position, they suddenly hold all of the answers is a bit silly, isn’t it? Worse, it really can hold your business back. If you have a hard working and clever team who wants to support you and give you their best but you’re more interested in preserving your ego than allowing them to support you in the best possible way, how will that benefit your business in the long run?

It is my opinion that we should not only admit it when we don’t know something, but embrace it. In doing so, I really feel we will have more interesting and vibrant discussions, come to better conclusions and grow in a space that feels empowering.

Lastly, I want to ask all of you to share if you have ever worked with or for a know-it-all. How did that impact you?