Home Concepts Decison Making & Problem Solving The Crises of Expertise and Belief: Sample Chapter

The Crises of Expertise and Belief: Sample Chapter

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Obviously, there is another side to this story. It is often advantageous for certain leaders to foster fear and anxiety. This is a tragic reality that we must confront. One simply has to access online news or a social media platform to be confronted by information related to some conspiracy theory. These theories are everywhere.

Contributing members of an organization should constantly question the validity of this information, but many members clearly do not—and contribute much less to the welfare of the organization as a result. All too often, members of an organization feel under threat and anxious. If they have received less education and training, an unscrupulous leader can simply state that an expert, leader or influencer with opposing views is part of some nefarious plot. This is often enough for large groups of people to believe what this leader has said and respond defensively, if not violently.

We need not sit back and observe this form of leadership taking hold in our organization or in organizations where we engage in coaching or consulting. Leadership effectively confronts conspiracies by being collaborative in their role as leader, by being a champion of education and training, and by being thoughtful in their use of language so that optimism and empowerment prevail.


A modern and effective society (whether at the personal or organizational level) cannot succeed without trusted experts and leaders. Steps to mitigate the formation and spreading of conspiracies in society and conspiratorial gossiping in organizations should be taken seriously and dealt with quickly before damage is caused. Collaboration and education (specifically focused on critical thinking skills) are critical to counter unscrupulous leaders and experts who are taking advantage and manipulating vulnerable populations to do their bidding.

More susceptible populations (individuals with certain personality disorders) require more support and help to prevent them doing harm to others and themselves. They must find a reason to work for rather than against the collective welfare of their organization. Hopefulness, thoughtfulness and collaboration -can come together to form a “perfect storm” that counters the storm of conspiracy—and the proliferation of lies (the topic to which we turn in Chapter Six).



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