The End of Creative Thought

We choose between fakery and creative thought.

Organizations where everyone “has it all together” are sick. When you maintain the illusion of competence you, propagate fakery, inflame stress, dilute relationships, and end creativity.

One benefit of authenticity is creativity. 

the deepest danger of fakery is coming to believe your own lies


Fakers focus brainpower on preserving image. There’s little brainpower left for creativity. I’ve noticed this during live coaching demos.

I often invite an audience member to be coached during presentations I give. I notice indications of thought in people who are confident enough to be themselves. After I ask a question, authentic leaders lean back and look at the ceiling. Some look down. Occasionally they sigh. (All indications of thought.)

One thing fakers never do is pause and look at the ceiling. A faker’s brainpower is spent on protection, not reflection.

Fakery drains creativity.

Conspiracy of silence:

No one really believes the baloney that you have it all together. They don’t confront you because they don’t want to expose themselves. 

It’s normal to hide weaknesses and flaunt strengths. During job interviews, for example, you’re taught to say, “I’m a bit of a work-a-holic,” when asked about weaknesses. It’s bull crap.

The deepest danger of fakery is coming to believe your own lies.

Protecting the appearance of having it all together results in falling apart.

Authentic expectation:

Let others know you don’t have it all together. Expect others to acknowledge inadequacy and incompetence. The facade of competence prolongs incompetence.

Authentic leaders say:

  1. I used to be satisfied with my job.
  2. I feel like I’m missing something.
  3. How would you handle this?
  4. I don’t know?
  5. What are some options?
  6. I’m not good at….
  7. I wonder how best to handle this?

Owning inadequacies is justified by creative thought.

How might leaders create environments where authenticity prevails?