Superiority Bias

Superiority bias ensures you will always believe you are better than the next person Unless and Until they can prove their credibility and capability which are driven by results, experience and history.

It doesn’t matter who you are…

It doesn’t matter who you are or how enlightened you and your industry is or think that are. There will always be superiority bias



This is the subconscious belief that you are better than the next person.

This may come as a shock to some of us who feel we are open minded and tolerant, but it is ingrained in our very subconscious as a human being we are HARD WIRED. It doesn’t matter what the world around us says we should be like WE HAVE SUPERIORITY BIAS.

Superiority bias explained.

You will always believe you are better than the next person UNTIL and UNLESS they can prove their credibility.

Automatically you will look for reasons or evidence to confirm this bias (confirmation bias) be that results, experience, history, gender, cultural or chronology. You can’t avoid it… It WILL happen because humans are hard wired to do this. All you can do is be aware it IS HAPPENING and avoid making decisions about credibility and capability based on culture, gender or chronology.

Credibility and capability are driven by results, experience and history.


Results – speak for themselves – have you been here before, done this particular activity and won –

i.e. achieved or exceeded the desired outcome. Not just once – but on multiple occasions. Once we can write off or discount as a lucky event or a fortuitous anomaly. read more…


Experience – is a complex issue, driven by several ethereal and ephemeral element Where you have worked, lived or travelled previously. The type and status of companies you have worked with. The job titles you have or have had. Where and in what circumstances you were raised. Where and to what level you are educated.


History – the other parties comparative chronology their experience and education vs your own chronology, experience, results and education.

Assumption and Experience

We find these things out about people by assumption and experience –
Have I seen anything like this before?
What were the outcomes?
Are there any reasons why it might be different this time?
These are confirmed over time by either directly asking a sequence of well-structured or learned questions or more often in some cases ONLY by observations and base assumptions.

Results, experience, history, gender, cultural and chronology all have an ethereal value and together they deliver us a credibility quotient by which we judge others motives, competence and credibility which in turn delivers us a way to position the other person either above or below ourselves in a global competence pecking order

“Joanne is better than me.  Tom and Greg are about the same as me, but I’m better than Sam and Pat ” – you often can’t quite put your finger on why… but you know in your world this is THE TRUTH!

When you get a New Job

Think about when one starts a new job – before you can be successful you will need to prove your competence and value to those around you and those you encounter.
To prove your credibility in the short term…
You may use your Education credentials
Your previous job title
Previous company histories
Previous results in similar environments or jobs.
Longevity and success in similar industries or jobs.

In the longer term your Credibility and perceived capability will depend upon results.

This is why it is difficult, but not impossible to change industries… it’s easy to hire someone with credibility in terms of results, experience and history in this type of industry than take a risk on someone who… hasn’t worked in this industry, hasn’t done this type of work, doesn’t fit the average known or accepted profile.

As the saying goes…

“Don’t judge a book by its cover!”

And remember, there is always…

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