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Don’t let "successful" people fool you

Martin
Martin
Jul 26, 2020 · 3 min read

In the past months, I’ve experienced a rise in business people and advisors that promote themselves on social media platforms. They market themselves as successful gurus while showing off with expensive toys and cars. They want to inspire others to follow their paths by applying their “magic tricks” which apparently got them to where they are.

It might give the appearance that their "magic tricks" or hacks tip the scales and allow everybody to do the same. But this is where the big danger lies. There is often absolutely no causation between their practices and the outcome. This bias is called survivorship bias, meaning you are likely to get to the wrong conclusion by only listening to these successful people. Furthermore, their actionable advice might not having any causal relationships with the outcomes they show.

A simple example

Don’t only judge by listening to successful people

The advice business is a monopoly run by survivors. They cannot tell you what you should not do. They often don’t know themselves how they got there.

The takeaway

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