Confidence and Competence Foundation for Success

CONFIDENCE is vital for success in life and business. I look for confident people when assembling a leadership team. A leader must have confidence in order to lead. A leader also needs to be competent. Success is the right combination of confidence and competence.

Today, the multi-billion dollar industry of self-help really focuses on boosting people’s confidence. However, Paul McGee, author of S.U.M.O (Shut Up, Move On) and Self-Confidence, emphasizes both confidence and competence for success. He outlined a wonderfully simple confidence-competence matrix (below).

In the business environment, it is not likely to find many people in Quadrant One. They usually do not last long in any one particular job. They need help.

I’ve managed people, and even had friends, who fit into different parts of Quadrant Two. These people can be found in some large organizations, where competency aren’t measured clearly. In the smaller startup environment, they can be quite disruptive, and poisonous to the work culture. The reality show American Idol capitalizes on showing up people who are delusional about their singing abilities. I can be pretty delusional about my dancing moves after some drinking.

The magic Quadrant Three represents our leaders, innovators, executives, entrepreneurs and other high achievers. You know these people. It doesn’t take long to spot one. We naturally want to be around them. We follow them. We want to be like them. We should all be striving to be in this quadrant. You need both competence and confidence to build a successful life.

The most interesting is Quadrant Four. People with tremendous potential who can’t get to the next level of success because they lack confidence. Look for these types of people within your organizations to help build their confidence and unlock their full potential. Finding competent people is not easy. If you have them within your organization, then invest time into building their leadership skills and your company will benefit.

Which quadrant are you? I challenge you today to set your sights on Quadrant Three in your life and work.