Stop Faking It

Francis King

“Fake it ‘till you make it” is the mantra for those who believe that a big persona and pretending to be well-establishing will substitute for the real thing. But, there is a cross-section of the population that believes this to be the opposite. In fact, there seems to be more material supporting authenticity over pretense. But, why do people insist on maintaining a show of business by trying to be prematurely successful? It’s a recipe for easy failure.

The need to project success for social validation is rooted in deep levels of insecurity. If anyone needs some sort of social validation of wealth, status, or power, then the acquisition of these things doesn’t truly matter. It’s the social approval that does.


Why? We are all sold on the idea of anyone becoming a runaway success. It’s so easy for some (a minority) to become successful easily and quickly. Unfortunately, it creates some damage. It creates and reinforces the notion that flashiness is a determinant of entrepreneurial success. Most business owners don’t have time to flaunt their assets. It’s not considered to be in good taste, and social media showcases take too much time.

There is also the danger of fake startups. Investors and stakeholders can be duped because of the ease of getting started. Customers and financiers should be aware of who’s faking it. This is one of the main reasons why businesses that are legitimate need to establish credibility. One way to do that is to play to your strengths. The urge to fake it stems from a sense of inadequacy.

Playing to your strengths means using skills that you are confident in –– using skills that you have efficiency with. Starting there will place you on solid ground. Consumers are more knowledgeable now, so if a business is promoting products or services that are backed by confidence and not arrogance, they can tell when something isn’t quite right.

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