Scarcity of Wisdom in Business: Access To More Information Produces More Knowledge, But Apparently Less Wisdom…

World is awash with information, but there seem to be a growing scarcity of wisdom. And worse, the two are often confused; many believe that having access to more information produces more knowledge, which results in more wisdom… But, if anything, the opposite is true– more information without the proper context and interpretation only muddles your understanding of the world rather than enriching it…

So; What is wisdom? How does anyone become wise? Is it something you are, something you have, or something you do? Does anyone ever set out to develop or acquire wisdom as a goal? How does a person become wise? Do people regarded as wise think of themselves as wise? What is it about someone who has others see them as wise?

Philosophers, psychologists, spiritual leaders, poets, novelists, life coaches, and a variety of other important thinkers have tried to understand the concept of wisdom… For some; wisdom is the ability to think and act using knowledge, experience, understanding, common sense, insight…

wisdom Words-of-Wisdom

For Cheryl; wisdom is the ability to use the best means at the best time to accomplish the best ends. It is not merely a matter of information or knowledge but of skillful and practical application of the truth to the ordinary events of life… For Al; a person acquire wisdom from life-long, child-like curiosity and a playful spirit. Wise people are happy rather than hostile, no matter how badly life has treated them. You gain wisdom when you ask questions, explore, want to know how thing work, and learn valuable lessons from rough experiences…

For Gail; knowledge is knowing how to apply the information. And wisdom is bringing all of your knowledge and skill to a situation to bring it to a successful conclusion… A couple more pearls of wisdom:

  • Quote–Jim Rohn: For things to change, you must change… for things to get better, you must get better… discipline is the bridge between goals and accomplishment… motivation is what gets you started , habit is what keeps you going… don’t wish it’s easier, wish you are better.. don’t wish for less problems, wish for more skills… don’t wish for less challenge, wish for more wisdom… if you really want to do something, you’ll find a way; and if you really don’t, you’ll find a good excuse…
  • Quote– Peter Drucker: Leadership means getting the right things done; no two leaders are alike– some are very gregarious, some very aloof, some are charmers, others are like a dead mackerel, but they all have two things in common; they get things done and you can trust them… Doing the right thing is more important than doing the thing right… If you want something new, you have to stop doing something old… What gets measured gets improved… So much of what you call management consists of making it difficult for people to work…

In the article Wisdom in the Age of Information by Maria Popova writes: A great storyteller– whether a business person, journalist, filmmaker, curator… helps people figure out not only what matters in the world, but also why it matters. A great storyteller dances up the ladder of understanding, from information to knowledge to wisdom… Through symbol, metaphor, association… the storyteller helps us interpret information, integrate it with our existing knowledge, and transmute that into wisdom…

A great story is not about providing information, though it can certainly inform; but a great story invites an expansion of understanding, a self-transcendence… and more than that it plants the seed to grow new understanding– of the world, your business, yourselves… At a time when information is increasingly cheap and wisdom increasingly expensive, this is the gap where the value of storytellers lives…

wisdom Data-information-knowledge-wisdom-chart

In the article Business Wisdom Of Steve Jobs by Jeff Soloman writes: Throughout the years, Steve Jobs has shared his remarkable story and business insight through speeches, interviews, keynote addresses… Here is a compilation of some inspiring bits of wisdom from Steve Jobs… hopefully, some of these will encourage you to follow your heart as you build your own business empire:

  • Embrace the opportunity in every situation: Getting fired from Apple was the best thing that could have ever happened to me. The heaviness of being successful was replaced by the lightness of being a beginner again, and less sure about everything. It freed me to enter one of the most creative periods of my life.
  • Commit to doing great work and never settle: Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking, and don’t settle. As with all matters of the heart, you’ll know when you find it. And, like any great relationship, it just gets better and better as the years roll on. So keep looking, and don’t settle.
  • Make every day count: Remembering that I’ll be dead soon is the most important tool I’ve ever encountered to help me make the big choices in life. Because almost everything all external expectations, all pride, all fear of embarrassment or failure- these things just fall away in the face of death, leaving only what is truly important. Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose.
  • Don’t miss your moment: Right now the new is you, but someday not too long from now, you will gradually become the old and be cleared away. Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice. Have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.
  • Keep your priorities in check: Manage the top line, which is your strategy, your people and your products, and the bottom line will follow. My model for business is the Beatles. They were four guys who kept each other’s negative tendencies in check. They balanced each other, and the total was greater than the sum of the parts. Great things in business are never done by one person. They’re done by a team of people.
  • Attract remarkable people: Building a company is really hard. It requires the greatest persuasive abilities to hire the best people and to keep them working at your company and doing the best work of their lives. We’ve been lucky to have great partners and to have attracted great people. Everything that has been done has been done by remarkable people.
  • Choose the right horse to ride: Apple is a company that doesn’t have the most resources. The way we’ve succeeded is by choosing the right horses to ride really carefully. We try to pick things that are in their Spring. If you choose wisely you can save yourself a tremendous amount of work, instead of trying to do everything. Sometimes you just have to pick the things that look like they’ll be the right horse to ride.
  • Don’t stress… it will all work itself out: If the market tells us we’re making the wrong choices, we’ll listen to the market. That’s what a lot of customers pay us to do, to try to make the best product. And if we succeed, they’ll buy them, but if we don’t, then they won’t. And it will all work itself out.”
  • Move on to the next great thing: If you do something and it turns out pretty good, you should go out and do something else wonderful. Don’t dwell on it for too long, just figure out what’s next.
  • Stay hungry. Stay foolish: Much of what I’d stumbled into by following my curiosity and intuition turned out to be priceless later on.

In the article What’s Your Conventional Wisdom? by Holly Green writes: What does conventional wisdom look like in a business? Try these for starters: Your biggest competitive threat will come from someone inside your industry. Your customers have always wanted it this way; they’ll never change. You don’t have to worry about your service getting commoditized because you are different and special. You can’t do it that way; nobody’s ever done it that way before. Don’t mess with your cash cow; the products and services that made you successful in the past will continue to do so in the future…The real danger with conventional wisdom is that it shuts down creativity and different ways of thinking…

It intimidates people from bringing up new ideas and expressing opinions that run counter to prevailing attitudes. It’s the little voice in your head that whispers; Don’t be ridiculous, that idea couldn’t possibly work. Or, don’t say that, people will laugh at you! Any time a business fails, loses market share, or makes a costly blunder, it’s usually because conventional wisdom had the upper hand… When conventional wisdom fails in sports, the team gets a chance to start over the next year with faster, better players. In today’s business environment, however, you often don’t get a second chance…

wisdom tumblr_m5oy48SPbj1rtanbqo1_500 Wisdom is an ancient concept and an esteemed human value, but– What is it? According to Stephen S. Hall; it’s easier to define what wisdom isn’t: First, it isn’t necessarily or intrinsically a product of old age, although reaching an advanced age increases the odds of acquiring the kinds of life experiences and emotional maturity that cultivate wisdom… Second, if you think you’re wise, you’re probably not…

According to Donald Cooper; every business is faced with increased competition, shrinking margins, more demanding customers and the challenge of finding and keeping great staff. Mediocrity is no longer an option. To thrive, or even survive, you need wisdom, passion, focus… and 2 out of 3 isn’t good enough! You need to truly understand your business, your customers, your market, your industry: That’s the ‘wisdom’ part…

According to Harriet Tubman; every great dream begins with a dreamer. Always remember, you have within you– strength, patience, passion, and with a little persistence– the ‘wisdom’ to change the world…