General, Social, Tips


Taiwo Williams Written by Taiwo Williams · 1 min read >

An over-flogged cliché, a proven maxim or just a bunch of rhyming words. It is near impossible to have not heard this statement at some point in time of your life. In the study and practice of business, it is attached to almost every other advice either directly or impliedly. But is it true? Do you actually make it after faking it? Is this good advice?

I’ll cut to chase and say, not always. This is because most people mis-understand or chose to misinterpret what is truly meant by the phrase.

If you are like me, (out-spoken when I think I need to be and introverted EVERYOTHER time) then you might be guilty of misinterpreting this popular advice too. Truth is, I have actively and passively “faked” it for so long, I barely know where my comfort zone is anymore. I just know I don’t like many shalaye.

This is an image thing right?”

I recently received a peculiar feedback from a presentation task I delivered for Management communication. After the “okay” presentation which for some reason surprised people, I was asked, “It’s an image thing, right? There’s nothing wrong with that. We all do it. The key is to monitor it and ensure consistency” For the first time in a while, I felt a crack in the matrix. When I understood what she was saying, I couldn’t give any other reply but “um..yeah, thank you” I thought the point of faking it till you make it was to not get found out.

“You Don’t Always make it from faking it”

For the most part, I do this to instil the confidence in myself that I otherwise would not have. This reserved nature makes its way to the surface from time to time but I’ve had to keep it at bay because I understand that visibility is vital in business. But when can faking it result in something far from making it? Simply, when you’re faking competence rather than confidence.

Faking a competence has a host of negative consequences attached to it. Most notably, you are unable to do the work. A collection of people (you included) have just put their trust in you because you have convinced all that you are the man for the job. Unfortunately, you are in a sticky situation because you don’t actually know what to do.

Secondly, YOU KNOW that you’re faking it and this can lead to imposter syndrome. It’s possible to feel like you do not deserve the accolade, plaudits and even opportunities you come across. This even more likely in situations where you actually do not.

By way of a recommendation, be honest. I plan to be. It’s wild to hear sometimes but people can sense a truthful energy. This eventually fosters trust and as a result of a fruitful relationship, genuine confidence is instilled.

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