California Management Review
California Management Review is a premier academic management journal published at UC Berkeley
by Don A. Moore
The leadership literature is replete with admonitions that successful leadership requires confidence. While that may be true, striving for greater confidence runs the risk of overconfidence. Overconfident leaders put themselves, their teams, and their organizations at risk. There are reasons to be skeptical that greater confidence improves performance, and substantial reasons to worry that greater confidence can undermine preparation. This article offers suggestions to avoid being fooled by overconfident charlatans. It also offers strategies for wise and honest leaders who would like to be both confident and truthful.